Lassen College increases 2018, 2019 budget

Lassen Community College is no longer paying for the sins of the past and is now looking forward to a brighter future.

During the Superintendent/President report, Dr. Marlon Hall shared the 2018, 2019 budget for Lassen College, and it came with the news of past penalties paid in full to the state and an increased budget for the year.

Dr. Hall told the board, “We want to stay focused on what we have to do to move the college in a … positive direction,” detailing his continued work with strategic planning.

Lassen College is no longer required to pay the state of California the annual penalties of $162,047. The penalties stem from a review continuing concerns regarding the fiscal and operational stability of the Lassen Community College District from more than a decade ago.

In the May 2009 Management Review of Lassen College from the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office, it mentions the college had an ongoing problem with its accreditation status.

In 1996, the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, ACCJC, placed the district on probation. The district formed work groups to address the findings and because of their progress, the commission reaffirmed the college’s accreditation but continued to monitor the college and requested that the college submit a progress report in 2004.

The accreditation was interrupted when the ACCJC placed the college on warning in June 2006 and conducted a site visit in July 2006. ACCJC reported, “The team was gravely concerned with the general state of governance at the college.”

The chancellor’s office also decertified the college apportionment claims and issued a minimum conditions complaint and apportionment review after receiving allegations of state apportionment violations related to physical education courses. The office’s report determined that the college had offered courses for which it had inappropriately claimed $1.3 million for apportionment. In addition, the college also identified more than $657,000 of inappropriately claimed apportionment, resulting in a need to repay the state more than $2 million.

In June 2005, the college district’s governing board and former president requested that the Financial Crisis and Management Assistance Team, conduct a fiscal health analysis of the college. The conducted it’s review and in January 2006 issued a report which indicated that the college district’s management of its assets was impeded by a lack of internal controls, that key management positions were vacant or operating with interim appointments, and that the college district’s budget was poorly managed. Although FCMAT helped the college district develop a budget process, the CCCCO continued to monitor the college.

As a result of the chancellor’s continual review and payments the college made, in August 2007, the college district’s liability was recalculated and determined that the college district owed the state more than $1.7 million in overclaimed apportionment.

Now the college district is underway on its first year without the repayments and is enjoying the news of an increased budget. With it’s new funding formula the budget for Lassen College’s 2018-2019 year is $15.8 million an increase of $2.1 million from the previous year.