The Hancock College Board of Trustees is scheduled to vote on the district's 2017-18 budget Tuesday night in Santa Maria.

The public session begins at 6 p.m. in the college boardroom, room B-100.

Michael Black, vice president of Finance and Administration, will present the board with a $61 million budget -- slightly higher than last year's $60 million spending plan.

A memo addressed to the board indicates that the budget is a continuation of established financial policies and procedures.

"The fiscal year budget focus is maintaining fiscal stability and managing reserves in light of declining enrollment experienced [over] the past four years," the memo reads.

Administrators anticipate enrollment to remain flat compared to projections, an overall decline from the 2016-17 school year. To mitigate the latest enrollment drop, Hancock will receive stability funding from the state to compensate the college's diminished ability to generate revenue from tuition and fees.

The memo identifies three priorities (faculty, supplies and student workers) for the proposed budget. Administrators hope prioritizing areas will "relieve capacity constraints in high demand program areas."

While the district projects a roughly $1 million revenue increase, expenses have grown by almost $3 million. Projections suggest a sharp decline in expected income for the college -- down from approximately $1.9 million to $23,000. Though small, the projected income will help bolster the college's unrestricted financial reserve to more than $7 million.

The memo indicates expenditure increases are largely due to additional faculty and staff hires, revisions to the California School Employees Association contract, revisions to the Supervisory/Confidential salary schedule and increases in employer obligations to the California Public Employees' Retirement System and California State Teachers' Retirement System.

Mathew Burciaga covers education in Santa Maria and the surrounding area for Lee Central Coast Newspapers. Follow him on Twitter @math_burciaga

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