EUGENE, Ore. (KMTR) -- Closing Oregon's legislative session in Salem, lawmakers have passed a bill that will likely help fund more than a dozen capital improvement projects at community colleges across the state, including Lane Community College.
Oregon House bill 5202 will infuse more than 19 million dollars in to projects across 17 community colleges in Oregon.
Lane Community College will get 1 million dollars for new classrooms and labs. LCC says the capital improvement work will target one building specifically: building 18 or the Shields Industrial Technology Building.
Right now, building 18 is home to offices, winding hallways, classroom space without doors and the student newspaper among other things.
With 1 million dollars from the state, LCC will also match the funds with another 1 million dollars, then remodel the building. The remodel work will add another 4 classroom / labs on to the building.
There's no concrete plans as to how the remodel will work at this time, however the hope is to expand the building on at least one side. Construction is expected to start in spring 2013.
LCC says the extra classroom space will help meet student demand and get more people graduating on time.
“Being able to get students in to classes that they need to move in to the programs. For instance, nursing, students have a list of prerequisite classes they need to take to move into the nursing program,” says Brett Rowlett, Director of Government Affairs and Community Relations at Lane Community College.
“So having more state of the art classroom space to offer these classes in will help us get students into those programs faster,” says Rowlett.
All of the classroom space will be used for career and technical education, also “STEM” program classes, also called Science, Technology, Engineering and Math classes.
Ideally, LCC is hoping to consolidate those programs in to building 18.
While the funding is likely to come, LCC and ther other 16 community colleges in the state that are a part of House Bill 5202 will have to wait for a final nod for the funds from the State Treasurers office. The money will come from bonds through Oregon Lottery dollars. Those bonds will likely be firmed up in 2013.
Linn Benton Community College is also set to benefit from House bill 5202, receiving 800,000 dollars for an “advanced transportation technology center.”
Southwestern Oregon Community College will receive 387,200 dollars to renovate labs and classrooms for STEM and CTE support.
Umpqua Community College will also receive $400,000 for CTE and STEM centers.