Eastern Florida State’s New Budget Includes Faculty and Staff Pay Raise, No Tuition Increase for Students

By  //  June 15, 2021

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No tuition increase for students for the 10th straight year

No tuition increase for students for the 10th straight year and pay raises for faculty and staff are the main features of the new fiscal year budget at Eastern Florida State College. (EFSC image)

BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – No tuition increase for students for the 10th straight year and pay raises for faculty and staff are the main features of the new fiscal year budget at Eastern Florida State College.

The $77 million plan for Fiscal Year 2021-22 was unanimously approved Monday by the college’s Board of Trustees. It goes into effect July 1.

The budget comes after a difficult year during which the college successfully navigated the COVID-19 pandemic and deep recession.

“The college is on sound fiscal footing because we lived within our means in a financially responsible way, avoiding the job and academic program cuts that have hit other colleges and universities hard,” said EFSC President Dr. Jim Richey.

Key elements of the budget include:

■ No tuition increase for students for the 10th straight year, which corresponds to the time Richey has been EFSC’s president.

The total for tuition and general fees will remain $104 per credit hour for lower-division courses for Florida residents, which is in line with other state colleges in Central Florida.

The per credit hour charge for upper-division courses for Florida residents will remain $128.51, which is similar to other institutions in the 28-member Florida College System of which Eastern Florida is a member.

“Students have had a tough year with many financially hurt by the pandemic. Keeping tuition affordable is critically important for them to stay in the classroom. It remains my top priority,” said Richey.

■ A tentative new three-year collective bargaining agreement with the United Faculty of Florida Brevard Chapter that includes a $1,750 increase to base salary in the first year.

UFF members will hold a ratification vote in August before the start of the Fall Term.

“Our faculty are among the college’s most valuable resources and their performance was extraordinary the past year as in-person classes were moved online. Students continued to receive an excellent education because of their efforts,” said Richey.

Adjunct faculty will also receive an additional 3 percent raise in compensation for each class they teach.

■ A 3-percent pay increase in base salary for all full-time and regular part-time non-probationary staff. They will see the additional money in their paychecks in July.

The college will also pay 100 percent of the premium cost for health, dental and life insurance for the base individual employee plans.

“Our staff has risen to the occasion during the pandemic, demonstrating innovation and dedication that kept students on the right track. They are first-class professionals and are extremely valued,” said Richey.

The raise does not include Richey, who also turned down a pay increase during his annual performance review by trustees in February.

The budget fully funds all academic programs and includes cost savings such as not filling vacant positions and reductions to several areas of college operations.

The budget benefited from an additional $1.6 million in funds above last year’s appropriation from the Florida Legislature. Richey thanked the Brevard County delegation, especially Rep. Rene Plasencia, for their efforts.

“Their support is making a big difference to our students and colleagues. It means a lot to all of us and is greatly appreciated,” said Richey.

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