Portage College’s operating budget will be cut again in 2022-23 – but senior administrators are confident the College can weather the storm thanks to astute planning and a heads up from the Government of Alberta.
The February 24, 2022 provincial budget reduced the College’s Campus Alberta Grant by 3.5 per cent for 2022-23, a $731,000 decrease. This is the fourth year in a row that Portage’s operating grant has been cut, totaling $3.595 million. This is equivalent to 16 per cent. The cut was anticipated, however, as the provincial government warned the College last year that a cut in the 3-4 per cent range was coming for 2022-23.
Capital Maintenance and Renewal (CMR) funding, which assists in maintaining the condition of facilities and covers the cost of repairs, upgrades, maintenance to and replacement of building systems and major components, was also cut by $288,000 (19.2 per cent) from 2021-22. Funding for mental health and students with disabilities as well as the Apprenticeship Technical Training Grant (ATTG) were maintained at 2021-22 budget levels.
“The College anticipated these reductions which were included in our budget planning,” said Nancy Broadbent, President and CEO of Portage College. “Our three-year planning model and increasing non-government revenue streams are enabling us to offset the cuts and invest in improving the student experience for the first time in many years. In addition, we are confident that we will remain a key economic driver for the Northeast.”