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Blinn board votes to submit modifications to recent house bill

College seeks firms to provide master planning, traffic impact analysis for new campus development

March 24, 2015

The Blinn College Board of Trustees voted Tuesday to submit modifications to House Bill 1903.

The bill, introduced by Rep. John Raney, would require Blinn to allocate funds based upon campus contact hours. The board voted to recommend modifying the bill so that state appropriations would be based upon campus contact hours. The original bill requires state appropriations and tuition and fees to be distributed according to campus contact hours.

The board also suggested changing the effective date from the biennium ending August 31, 2017 to the biennium ending August 31, 2019.

“We remain committed to managing the college district as a single entity that provides our students a variety of campus environments and educational programs,” said Douglas Borchardt, board president.

Blinn has experienced an historic 37.5 percent enrollment increase since 2006, with much of that growth taking place on the Bryan campus. Blinn registered 19,317 students for the recent Fall semester, an increase of 4.9 percent over last year and the highest total in the College’s 131-year history. According to the Texas Association of Community Colleges, two-year college enrollment is down slightly statewide.

To accommodate that growth, Blinn has begun a $10 million Bryan campus renovation project and recently announced the purchase of 95 acres at F.M. 2818 and Leonard Road in Bryan for the development of an additional campus. During Tuesday’s meeting, the board authorized Blinn administrators to seek architectural and engineering firms to develop a master plan and conduct a traffic impact analysis to aid in the development of the new campus and assist the city of Bryan and the Texas Department of Transportation in their planning efforts.

The completed master plan is tentatively scheduled to be complete in time for the Nov. 17 board meeting. The first phase of construction is scheduled for completion in 2017.

In other action, the board approved a $3 in-district tuition increase, a $10 increase to out-of-district and out-of-state tuition and a $2 general fee increase. Tuition in 2015-16 will be $48 per credit hour for in-district students, $102 for out-of-district students and $177 for out-of-state students. The general fee will be $46. These adjustments are expected to generate an additional $5.3 million in annual revenue to offset the expanded instructional and infrastructure costs related Blinn’s continued enrollment growth.

About Blinn College
Founded in 1883, Blinn is a comprehensive community college committed to educational excellence and to individual and community enhancement. With an enrollment of 19,317 students, Blinn ranks among the nation’s leaders in transferring students to leading four-year universities and has received national recognition for its affordable educational excellence.

As part of its commitment to student success, Blinn is implementing a Quality Enhancement Plan titled “Destination Success: First-Year Focus,” which utilizes learning communities to support first-year college students.

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