Proposal OK’d despite state budget crunch
PULLMAN – Washington State University will seek $15 million from the Legislature for an overhaul of its student information systems despite the state’s $2 billion-plus budget deficit.
The board of regents approved the proposal at a meeting Friday in Pullman.
Board Executive Assistant Christine Hoyt said the request will be submitted to the Legislature for consideration as part of its 2010 supplemental budget.
WSU spokesman James Tinney said the current student information system is nearly 40 years old. Tinney said the system is used for enrollment, registration and other administrative functions.
The system has caused problems for several years, including last August, when the system was needed the most, he said.
Tinney acknowledged the budgetary problems the state is facing. He said if the money is not approved out of the general fund, then WSU hopes to receive the Legislature’s permission to use what is known as a certificate of participation. The certificate essentially works as a bond that would be paid off in the future through the university’s income.
The board also approved creation of the long-discussed University College.
Tinney said the college is designed for students who come to WSU and don’t go directly into a major. That leaves a period when they are not affiliated with any college. He said the University College would provide advising and academic support to those students.
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