A steady stream of revenue is likely available for future capital improvement projects at Erie Community College.
The State University of New York board of trustees on Tuesday said revenues generated from use of ECC's facilities - such as rental fees or bookstore fees - now qualify as SUNY matchable funds. A similar resolution goes before ECC's board of trustees June 30, where it is expected to pass without incident.
ECC President Jack Quinn said clarification from SUNY about which types of funds may be matched by SUNY dollars means the two-year public college could raise $500,000 to $1 million each year in facility-use revenues. Officials anticipate the funds will serve an immediate need: ECC's pursuit of a new $30 million academic building at its north campus in Amherst.
"What this will establish is a regular stream of revenue that ECC will be able to use for capital-related projects for a long time," Quinn said. "The key to this is that our money at ECC will be matched dollar for dollar by SUNY, so this is a big deal."
ECC announced in April that it wants to build a $30 million, 25,000-square-foot health sciences building at its north campus. Erie County pledged $7.5 million to ECC, as long as ECC raises the same amount. SUNY, meanwhile, would bond $15 million for the remainder of the costs.
The ECC Foundation, which raises money for scholarships and other initiatives, will seek additional money from various foundations, along with the college's alumni and supporters, Quinn said.
ECC operates three campuses with 22 buildings, many of which need upgrades, Quinn said. ECC's health sciences programs, such as nursing and emergency medical technology, are in need of more space to handle rising enrollments, he added.