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Action needed to combat budget cuts

On April 10, 2013

It is no secret that our federal government has spent beyond its means, which is essentially bankrupting our future generation. Many Americans are living on credit rather than savings. Eventually, the out-of-control spending catches up and for Marshall University students, this was definitely the case Tuesday when President Stephen Kopp sent a university-wide email to students, noting the drastic measures the university is taking to combat a massive budget cut.

In February, it was made clear that Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin was implementing a 7.5 percent appropriation cut to the state’s Higher Education Policy Commission. Some individual institutions, such as Marshall, could face an appropriation cut that reaches 8.94 percent. When crunching the numbers, that equates to more than $11 million. According to Kopp’s email, however, only a $5.11 million of the cut would affect the main campus.

Marshall students, faculty and staff realize this cut is on the horizon — it has been on the radar of many college administrators for many months. Although there has been much protest from students and the Student Government Association initiated a petition that acquired thousands of signatures, the cuts are looking as if they will indeed take place. This is definitely upsetting, but it just goes to show the reality of what can happen when too much money is spent and short-term gain is prioritized over lasting achievement. Republicans and Democrats can both be blamed for allowing spending to get out of control, but Americans all need to pitch in and help our country, especially at a time when our government simply cannot pay their own bills.

The “taking action now, looking ahead to looming budget challenges” email from Kopp laid out conservation measures the university is taking to tackle the forthcoming cuts. Some have criticized Kopp over the way in which he publicized the information. For instance, he so happened to be out of town when the announcement was made, making it difficult for media to ask questions. In addition, Kopp continues to get a pay increase until his salary maxes out at $430,000 in July 2014. Acquiring a pay increase the same time the university is implementing a hiring freeze and sweeping some revenue accounts is not exactly frugal.

Kopp will receive criticism, but taking action now instead of having to deal with drastic measures later is the appropriate step to take. Kopp still wants to maintain the same priorities and continue the same mission the university has done for years. Kopp wants to continue to accelerate growth, improve productivity and gain efficiencies, even in the midst of a devastating

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