Carroll Community College officials said there are pros and cons to Gov. William Donald Schaefer's proposal to abolish the agency that oversees the state's community colleges.
"It's a significant issue,"said Alan M. Schuman, CCC's interim director and its director of administration. "It's an issue for the governor and the Legislature to decide."
Schaefer plans to ask the General Assembly to abolish the State Board for Community Colleges, which oversees the state's 17 two-year institutions. He is omitting the board's $1 million budget from next year's spending plan.
The governor's plan, prompted by the state's $420 million revenue shortfall for the current fiscal year, would expand the powers of the Maryland Higher Education Commission, which oversees the state's four-year institutions.
Schuman said community college officials believe there has been some redundancy between the community colleges board, which guides the academic programs, funding and other policies for the state's community colleges, and the Maryland Higher Education Commission.
"If the two agencies are consolidated, we believe there will be some savings," Schuman said.
The governor's action comes just days after his administration proposed cutting state aid to community colleges by 5 percent. For CCC, that amounts to $97,000 for the current fiscal year, which ends June 30.
Schuman said he didn't know what the overall impact of the governor's latest action would be on colleges, such as CCC. He said the impact would be little if the Maryland Higher Education Commission adopts the same type of procedures as the community colleges board.
"There'spros and cons," Schuman said. "All we can do is await their response."