(this story originally appeared on Sheridan Media)
The Northern Wyoming Community College District (NWCCD) Board of Trustees approved two significant action steps toward its separation from Gillette College during its regular meeting last week.
Trustees voted to approve a universal Memorandum of Understanding between NWCCD and Gillette Community College District (GCCD) as well as an agreement to transfer funds and debt to GCCD.
The documents were created by a joint transition team comprised of three trustees from each district and their respective college presidents.
The MOU provides a framework to aid in the process of separation and outlines how agreements on topics such as indebtedness, insurance and employees, among other items, will be documented during the transition period.
As new agreements are reached, they will be added to the MOU and ratified by both NWCCD and GCCD.
The Wyoming Community College Commission will then review the agreements.
“This milestone is significant because we’re creating the structures that will help us move forward expeditiously but with proper consideration given to each item,” said NWCCD President Dr. Walt Tribley.
Trustees approved the first agreement Tuesday which transfers the balance of funds given to NWCCD in support of Gillette College by the City of Gillette and Campbell County 1% funding, the Campbell County Board of Cooperative Higher Education Services, a bookstore fund balance, and a State matching fund totaling $879,567.20.
“This money was earmarked to be used for Gillette College and gives GCCD the operating budget it needs to move forward with other necessary action steps in the process of becoming its own independent district, such as hiring employees,” said Tribley.
The approved agreement also transfers the debt on Inspiration Hall, the newest residence hall on the Gillette College campus.
This debt is currently scheduled to be paid out over the next four years, with the next payment not due until the summer of 2022 in the amount of $244,871.18.
This is just the first step in a larger conversation regarding the transfer of property between the two Districts, which will be addressed by the transition team in meetings that will take place over the coming months.
– The Gillette Community College District Board of Trustees has subsequently approved the agreements with Northern Wyoming Community College District as well. – Ed.