Chesapeake College will try and hold its tuition at its current rate in fiscal 2010. Chesapeake College President Barbara Viniar briefed county commissioners and council members from Talbot, Dorchester, Caroline, Kent and Queen Anne’s counties on the college’s proposed Fiscal Year 2010 budget. If the governor’s budget is approved, the tuition will remain the same; however, if there are cuts, the college will limit the tuition increase to $1 per credit hour through cost-cutting strategies such as $200,000 in technology cuts, no employee salary increases, two unpaid staff furlough days, and shifting additional health-care costs to employees.
One step aimed at making college affordable is a seven-year agreement with Barnes and Noble as the college’s bookstore vendor. The agreement will reduce the mark-up on books from 25-percent to 20-percent. Another step implements a sliding scale for down payments, which will be as low as 15-percent when registering for fall classes in May and rising monthly to a top down payment of 55-percent in August. Students then pay off balances in equal monthly installments through November. A similar program is planned for spring classes.