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Posted: June 19, 2012 9:41 p.m.

GPC cuts 26 Newton employees

No campus was spared as Georgia Perimeter College laid off 282 workers in an effort to reduce a $25 million budget deficit.

The Newton Campus of Georgia Perimeter College will lose 26 employees as part of a college-wide reduction that will cut 215-full-time and 67-part time employees from the two-year college as it seeks to reduce an expected $25 million budget deficit.

Spokeswoman Beverly James released the cuts by campus and by department, but a list of the specific positions cut at the Newton campus was not made available.

Interim President Rob Watts announced the cuts in a letter to faculty and staff Monday, noting that personnel costs account for more 90 percent of the college's expenses. The cuts will not affect any tenured or tenure-track facility, he said.

GPC employs about 3,110 people, including 390 tenure and tenure-track faculty.
The cuts represent 9 percent of the college's total employment. Watts said previously he planned to reduce personnel costs by $10.7 million.

Newton lost one of the smallest numbers of employees, though it also has one of the smallest student populations, enrolling 2,724 students in the fall of 2011, according to the website.

In addition to cuts at specific campuses, GPC is cutting five of its online staff.

Watts said the college will work with displaced employees to find them work at other University of Georgia institutions in the metro-Atlanta area.

In addition, Watts said the college will be closing a number of internal institutes, though specifics were not released.

"Our first priority in making the reduction-in-force decisions was protecting classroom instruction for students," Watts said. "There may be a larger or smaller number of limited-term and part-time faculty members in the fall, but that will be based on enrollment and the academic needs of the college to provide instruction at its various locations and across its disciplines.
"All other areas of the college were affected. Some were affected less, such as public safety, given the need to maintain a safe learning environment on our campuses, and some areas were affected more, such as administrative support."

The personnel cuts will come in addition to previously announced cuts, including:
- eliminating non-essential out-of-state travel and reducing in-state travel
- reducing expenditures for supplies and materials, equipment purchases, library collection purchases and other operating expense categories to essential levels
- delaying the replacement schedule for faculty and staff computers by a year
- delaying a planned upgrade to our campus network by a year
- scaling back convocation and other similar college-wide or campus-wide events
- have SACS-qualified administrators, including the president, teach one or more courses this year
- use the new revenue allocated by the Board of Regents for FY13 to reduce the deficit
- eliminate vacant positions and continue the hiring freeze
- reduce expenditures on part-time staff to essential levels
- increase class sizes in order to reduce the number of small sections
- on a temporary basis, adjust faculty workload from 5-4 to 5-5

GPC is the state's third-largest public college with an enrollment of around 27,000 students at campuses in Alpharetta, Clarkston, Covington, Decatur and Dunwoody.

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