PEMBROKE — Anyone worried that The University of North Carolina at Pembroke might be on the state’s hit list for closing can now breathe easier.
Gov. Pat McCrory, speaking in Pembroke on Thursday at a UNC Board of Governors meeting, said state legislators are no longer planning to consolidate UNC campuses in an effort to save money. The governor addressed the university system’s Board of Governors on the first day of its monthly meeting, which was being held at UNCP.
Concerns had been raised locally about the possible closing of UNCP after state Sen. Pete Brunstetter, a Republican from Forsyth County and co-chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, said that one or two of the university system’s 17 campuses might be consolidated or downsized as a way of saving the state money. Brunstetter said such action would reduce duplication of programs, as well as move money from poorly performing schools in the UNC System to better-performing schools.
McCrory told board members that while consolidation is no longer being considered, it would benefit the universities to continue to look for ways to consolidate resources and reduce overhead.
McCrory, in his proposed state budget, is recommending that the system be cut by $142.9 million in the fiscal year starting July 1 to $2.52 billion. This year the system’s budget is $2.66 billion.
The Board of Governors will continue its meeting today at 2 p.m. in Chapel Hill, where the new chancellor for the University of North Carolina will be announced.