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COC trustees face hardships

Posted: November 4, 2009 10:02 p.m.
Updated: November 5, 2009 7:00 a.m.

Tempering the celebratory moods of Joan MacGregor and Michael Berger, who both decisively won seats on the College of the Canyons board of trustees, was the need to prioritize the difficult work ahead for both as state funding cuts have put the college into financial straits.

Joan MacGregor, who was re-elected to seat three on the COC board, said she and her supporters were cheering after the results from absentee voters showed she had a sizeable advantage over her opponent Randy Moberg. She said endorsements from COC faculty and staff and legislators have been gratifying, and proof she had earned the trust of the community.

She added she knows she will need support, and her 16 years of experience as a COC trustee, to negotiate the rigors of the daunting financial crisis facing the college.

"Obviously the financial challenges are extreme," MacGregor said. "The state economy is in a difficult situation. I'm going to look to manage state funding cuts so they have the least impact on students. That is the primary concern."

According to previous reports, COC has cut nearly half its classes for the winter session. MacGregor said the financial problems are reaching a "crisis state."

Berger, a COC foundation board member and businessman, said he was ecstatic after he saw final election results at 4 a.m. He was nervous until all the votes were counted, even though he had a large lead over his opponent Brian Keogle after absentee votes were counted, he said.

He said he will use his business and city connections to create new partnerships advocating college funding. MacGregor and Berger both said they expect the funding shortage to end after about two years when the state economy is expected to rebound.


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