2009 Budget update: credibility and funding suffer

“There’s nothing to cheer about in this update,” said George Davison, Secretary-Treasurer of the Federation of Post-Secondary Educators.  “Funding at our public institutions is not keeping pace with either demands in the community or the core inflation needs of our institutions,” Davison added.  

“Our organization released a poll last week that showed a majority of British Columbians found the government’s handling of budget issues lacked credibility.  The numbers in this update confirm why credibility is failing to hit the mark.  The Ministry’s own service plan admits that its original forecast for student enrolment was half the actual number entering our institutions,” Davison noted.  

“This budget also comes nowhere close to meeting the needs of students.  Student aid has been cut by $17 million even though tuition fees will continue to rise over the next three years,” Davison said.

“Operating grants to post-secondary institutions are virtually flat-lined in this budget, leaving no capacity to improve access or affordability,” Davison added.

“The ultimate irony is that at many institutions we will have new buildings, but not enough operating funding to turn on the lights.  At a time when we know the economy needs the skills and training that our post-secondary institutions can produce, this budget completely by-passes the chance to make the investments in post-secondary education that a majority of British Columbians want to see,” said Davison.

“It’s disappointing to see a budget that is so wildly off-side with the views of most British Columbians,” Davison concluded.

About FPSE

The Federation of Post-Secondary Educators of BC is the provincial voice for faculty and staff in BC teaching universities, colleges and institutes, and in private sector institutions. FPSE member locals, represented by Presidents' Council and the Executive, represent over 10,000 faculty and staff at 18 public and 12 private sector institutions.