HCC trustees approve '93 spending plan including new classrooms, office space

October 29, 1992|By Sherry Joe | Sherry Joe,Staff Writer

Howard Community College's trustees last night approved a proposed $3.9 million capital budget for fiscal 1994 that includes $600,000 to renovate a nearby office building for classrooms and office space.

The Board of Trustees also raised President Dwight A. Burrill's salary from $96,107 to $97,984. The nearly 2 percent raise is in keeping with a 2.5 percent pay increase for all college employees that took effect July 1. Like other college employees, Mr. Burrill received no salary increase last year.

The trustees will send the capital plan for the fiscal year that begins July 1 to county government by Nov. 1.

The proposed budget calls for nine projects, including building renovations, upgrading storage tanks and sprucing up the campus theater and gym.

The college's top priorities are renovating the nearby three-story office building in the village of Hickory Ridge and installing an emergency generator. The college proper is located on Little Patuxent Parkway in Columbia.

The college already leases the first-floor of the building, at 10650 Hickory Ridge Road in Columbia, and would like to add up to 25 classrooms and 35 offices on the second and third floors.

Preliminary estimates of $701,000 increased to $1.3 million after county-funded consultants recommended gutting both floors, adding a fire stair and replacing the heating, ventilating and air-conditioning system, Mr. Burrill said.

The college hopes to occupy the entire building by February 1994, he said.

The generator, which costs $495,000, would provide backup power to the college's phone and computer system, and provide minimal elevator power for disabled people and brighter lights in laboratories.

College officials said that without a generator, the college would be incapacitated during emergencies and could lose valuable labor.

"We're here to provide an environment conducive to learning and education," said Bill Klarner, director of plant operations for the college. Whenever the Columbia campus loses electrical power, it "interferes with the educational process," he said.

The capital plan also includes $2.1 million to improve roads, upgrade two storage tanks to prevent leaks, and renovate the Smith Theatre and the gym.

Renovations proposed for the theater are in line with a 1989 county government study that recommended renovating buildings rather than building a new cultural arts center.

Last year, the theater received a new heating, ventilating and air-conditioning system. The capital plan also calls for new lighting and sound equipment as part of the theater's $2 million renovation, scheduled to be completed in 1998.

Valerie Constantini, humanities division chairwoman, applauded the recent renovations and stressed the need to continue restorations to keep pace with changes in the arts community.

"Students need to see, participate in, and create arts," she said, "and our facilities are woefully inadequate."

In other business, the trustees approved:

* A revised personnel manual that covers affirmative action, sexual harassment, equal employment and drug-free campus policies.

* An in-kind services policy that describes procedures under which the college can offer services, equipment, personnel and facilities to outside agencies.

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