Palomar Community College District reviewing recommendations for long-term fiscal health recovery

 

Last updated 11/19/2019 at 5:43pm

The Palomar Community College District is analyzing the findings of a self-subscribed fiscal review, examining the district's fiscal and operational policies and procedures. The district requested the 18 factor report by the Fiscal Crisis Management Assistance Team in early August.

SAN MARCOS – The Palomar Community College District is analyzing the findings of a self-subscribed fiscal review, examining the district's fiscal and operational policies and procedures. The district requested the 18 factor report by the Fiscal Crisis Management Assistance Team in early August and the team initiated their assessment in late September. The review began through the Institutional Effectiveness Partnership Initiative, initiated by Superintendent and President Joi Lin Blake, Ed.D., and was monitored by the California Community College Chancellor's Office.

Blake submitted the review request to FCMAT and was commended by the California Community College Chancellor's Office for her proactive approach in addressing the long-term fiscal health of the district.

In the letter, Frances Parmelee, assistant vice chancellor of college finance and facilities planning, said, "We commend Palomar College for its participation in the IEPI process and for proactively reaching out to FCMAT to complete a Fiscal Health Review Analysis and follow-up report. The FHRA is a valuable tool that can highlight specific areas where fiscal operations can be improved."


The Palomar Community College District's Fiscal Health Risk Analysis report from FCMAT indicates the current financial condition of the district is the result of a long history of inadequate practices that have led to outdated business practices and systemic structures and processes that are unsustainable and an impediment to long-term institutional effectiveness. The report showed the district will need careful planning to balance its limited growth funding and increased operational expenses.

The report recommended immediately begin bargaining with all constituent groups and reviewing all aspects of contracts; establishing a comprehensive internal auditing capacity that meets the industry standard for fiscally independent districts and reviewing the management structure in all academic and nonacademic areas.

Next, it suggested updating and following a comprehensive districtwide planning process that drives budget

development; establishing and following a collegewide comprehensive enrollment management plan that uses demographics, enrollment trends, program review and facility capacities as well as other relevant information and conducting a data integrity study to validate all data used for decision making and to ensure it is accurate and understood consistently by all users.


Also, report recommended integrating position control and enrollment management with the financial reporting systems in accordance with standard and best practice and establishing and following a comprehensive training program to include a board of trustees with training in understanding the budget and in governance responsibilities to better understand the district's specific financial benchmarks; data integrity with training in understanding reporting tools and their purposes and department-specific training in Education Code, Title 5 and labor law provisions.

Blake said, "We invited FCMAT to review our fiscal and business management strategies due to historical financial decisions that have placed the district at risk. Our commitment is to the success of our students and ensuring the public trust of residents within this region. We will work diligently to address the recommendations provided to us."

Submitted by Palomar Community College District.

 

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