BG Tech. College Faces Tough Choices in Wake of Budget Cuts

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A 2.5 percent additional budget cut for higher education institutions across the state will mean tough choices for administrators at Bowling Green Technical College.

Dr. Jack Thomas, school president, estimates BGTC has refunded 20 percent of its operating budget over the last four years back to the state. Thomas says community and technical colleges like his are especially hard hit by such cuts because of the small scope of their operation.

"We only have two welders, so do we cut one of those and reduce our welder output by 50 percent?" Thomas said.

BGTC has waiting lists for more than 2/3 of its programs, and trains technicians in fields like surgery, auto repair, welding, and manufacturing. Dr. Thomas says the community and technical college program in Kentucky is the most efficient "bang for your buck" in terms of education funding.

Dr. Thomas says his school, if asked to continue at its current funding level next year, will have to begin cutting teaching positions, and it's enrollment.