WCC’s audited financial statements are revelatory. If you pay close attention to what the statements are telling you, you’ll see that the cost of WCC’s administration is a growing problem. WCC spent 30.67% more on administration in 2019 than it did in 2012, the first year of Rose Bellanca’s tenure.
That’s not exactly apples-to-apples because you need to adjust for inflation. So, using real (2019) dollars, WCC spent nearly $2.1M more on administration in 2019 than it did in 2012. Which means that Washtenaw County taxpayers pay 17.3% more to administer WCC today than they did on Rose Bellanca’s first day on the job in 2011. Here’s the data from the audited financial statements from 2012-2019, showing the growth in cost of WCC’s administration.
|Fiscal Year||Administrative Expense||2019 dollars|
You might ask why the cost of WCC’s administration is so much higher today than it was in FY 2012? The simple answer is that the size of WCC’s administration has exploded under Rose Bellanca. But why does WCC need so many more administrators today than it needed in 2012? Those are both good questions that your elected Trustees don’t ever ask.
Other data indicate the rising cost of WCC’s administration
Another way to look at this is to compare the cost of WCC’s administration as a percentage of its instructional costs. In other words, for every dollar WCC spent on instruction, how much does it spend on administration? Once again, let’s turn to the audited financial statements to see what’s happening.
|Fiscal Year||Instructional Expense||Administrative Expense||Administration Expense per Instructional Dollar|
It is important to realize that the rising cost of WCC’s administration compared to its instructional expense is not the result of inflation. It is the result of the unrestrained growth of the administration. And it’s also important to realize that the instructional budget at WCC is measured in tens of millions of dollars. Increasing the cost of administration by a few cents per instructional dollar raises the cost of WCC’s administration by millions.
The cost of WCC’s administration is a real issue that the Trustees have not addressed. Today, WCC has a structural deficit. It is programmed to spend more than it takes in – largely because the Trustees do not pay attention to (or act upon) the information they’re being given at every monthly meeting and in every annual audit. As their voting records attest, the Trustees attend the meetings to sign off on whatever the Administration asks for.
It’s like the old joke: “How can I be out of money? I still have checks in my checkbook!”
Photo Credit: sk , via Flickr