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Nicolet College - 2.4% budget increase proposed to fund job training programs

Nicolet proposes 2.4% budget increase

to fund new job training programs

Nicolet College is proposing a modest budget increase for the next academic year in order to launch a variety of new training opportunities in areas with expanded or emerging job opportunities: heath care, road building, broadband internet, and renewable energy.

The proposed $32 million budget is a 2.4 percent increase over last year.

If approved by the Nicolet College Board of Trustees, the college will be able to offer Northwoods residents seven new certificates, many of which are designed to give people the skills necessary to quickly change careers.

"These new certificates were created in direct response to what is happening in the economy," said Nicolet College President Adrian Lorbetske. "The college will provide the training that will put people to work in areas projected to be the focus of new job creation."

Short-term in length, the new certificates will allow people to get the training they need for a new career relatively quickly so they can start working. The training also provides the initial basic classes that can lead to associate degrees.

The classes lead to employment as a:
- Broadband Technician
- Manufacturing Fundamentals/Essentials Technician
- Basic Highway Construction Worker
- Renewable Energy Technician
- Weatherization Technician
- Phlebotomy Technician
- Home Integration Technology Technician

The college will also add additional nursing and welding courses to meet demand.
The proposed budget also includes more refresher courses in math and computers to get future students - particularly those who have been out of a classroom for a while - the skills necessary to succeed in college.

Along with the slight budgetary increase, the college is also proposing to reallocate existing funds of $627,000. Part of this reallocation includes not filling the equivalent of three full-time, non-teaching positions; filling some positions at lower rates; and various line item reductions.

The proposed budget, which is based on a 2 percent increase in property valuation, includes a tax levy increase of 3.09 percent.

This would translate to a mill rate of 1.057, which is projected to be the lowest or second lowest mill rate of the 16 colleges in the Wisconsin Technical College System. Total increase on the tax levy would be $622,015, bringing the Nicolet levy total to $20.77 million.
At least four of the technical colleges in the state system are at their statutory maximum mill rate of 1.5.

The Nicolet College Board of Trustees will hold a public hearing on the budget at 5 p.m., Tuesday, June 16, in the University Transfer Center Fireside Room on the college's Rhinelander campus.