County Creates New Fee Structure With JCC

Jamestown Community College P-J file photo

Chautauqua County has put in place a new agreement when it comes to funding Jamestown Community College.

During the legislature’s Audit and Control Committee meeting, budget director Kathleen Dennison noted that in the past, the county has provided JCC money per full time equivalent student. Instead, the county wants to provide JCC a fee structure that is not dependent upon student enrollment.

“It would guarantee the college a minimum amount of tuition reimbursements or expenditures, and also a maximum amount,” she said.

The proposal was recently agreed upon. “In order to implement that floor and ceiling model, this year we did have to make an extra payment to JCC to bring them up to the minimum amount of sponsorship,” she said.

That amount will be $100,000 and will come from overage in the sales tax revenue.

Committee Chairman Chuck Nazzario, D-Jamestown, shared that he has been on the negotiating committee to create the new agreement.

“We met with JCC down at their campus, pre-COVID, to come up with a new model to minimize the fluctuations in cash flow to both the college and to the county,” he said. “We wanted to be a good partner because the college is a very valuable asset to the county so we developed this floor/ceiling model.”

Nazzaro said he feels this agreement protects the college by guaranteeing a minimum payment and rewards them when they have an increase in full time equivalent students. At the same time, he believes this agreement protects the county with a maximum amount it will need to pay.

According to Dennison, for 2020, the minimum agreement was $4,182,234 and the maximum was $4,286,974. In 2021, the minimum funding level is $4,137,192, while the maximum level is $4,240,792.

Legislator Mark Odell, R-Brocton, said he supports the new funding arrangement. “I think the greatest takeaway from this in the whole model is the fact that it’s going to create funding for predictability and stability for all parties,” he said.

The Audit and Control Committee unanimously backed the resolution to move $100,000 from sales tax revenue to JCC in order to meet the minimum obligation. The full legislature must give its approval tonight.


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