Fund the 2019 Florida College System Request of $222 Million

The Florida College System plays an integral part in Florida’s degree attainment and workforce training needs. With more than half of FCS graduating students transferring to universities, there is a direct correlation between supporting our students and strengthening our state universities to achieve a preeminent destination status.

The below priorities have been established in order to meet the workforce demands of industry for our state as well as maintain Florida’s ranking of #1 in Higher Education according to US News & World Report.


performance-based funding


Continue strategic improvements in areas of job placement and continuing education, retention and completion rates, and wage earnings.


for industry certifications


Expand the number of nationally recognized high-value certificates that address areas of critical workforce need in emerging or targeted industries.


for Workforce Preparation


Increase degree and certificate programs to fulfill identified employment gaps in high-demand areas.


for Student Success and Completion


Establish program-specific “2+2” targeted pathways and shorten time-to-degree completion by investing in services, including mental health, to promote student success, persistence, and retention.


for Faculty Recruitment and Retention


Recruit and retain high quality faculty and staff, with focus on competitive fields including STEM.

Additional Funding Requests

Additional funding requests include $401 million for Public Education Capital Outlay (PECO), $210 million for deferred maintenance, and the operational cost of new facilities (OCNF). These dollars are imperative to maintaining the operations of campus facilities and hurricane hardening to ensure FCS institutions are meeting the needs of the students and the communities we serve.

  • Operational Support - $212 million
    • Quality Faculty recruitment/retention
      Workforce Program Expansion and Development

      • Operational costs for workforce (High Skill High Wage)

      • Target to achieve the Florida Chamber 2030 Plan, which identifies future job needs

      • Five priority areas that have been identified include Aerospace & Aviation, Finance & Professional Services, Health Care & Life Sciences, Logistics & Distribution, and Manufacturing

      Student Success Initiatives

      • Increase advisors to achieve a ratio of 450 students to 1 advisor over 3 years

      • Purchase advising technologies

      • Implement STEM and Gateway Initiatives for Student Pathways (i.e. Emerging Technologies and Student Support Services: AI, cybersecurity, simulation, etc.)

      • Increase retention (short term) and completion (long term) while shortening time to degree

  • Industry Certifications - $10.2 million
    • • Increase of $10.2 million fully funds $1,000 per certification program (which are currently being prorated) and increases the total number of certificates awarded

      • Currently at 14,000 industry certifications. Increased funding would allow for approximately 19,000 industry certifications (per DOE projections)

Capital Outlay Infrastructure Requests

  • Public Education Capital Outlay (PECO) - $401 million
    • COP requests the following funds to complete the number one capital outlay priority projects at each of the 28 colleges. These projects have been submitted to the Florida Department of Education, which are ranked through a focus on STEM and high-wage programs. This year’s priorities include both partially funded and recently approved projects.


  • Deferred Maintenance - $210 million
    • Funding for system-wide deferred facilities maintenance is critical for maintaining the infrastructure of our colleges’ campuses. According to the 2016 Facilities Inventory Report, the FCS has indicated $1.05 billion of deferred maintenance needs over the next five years. Annually, this equates to roughly $210 million per year for maintenance, repairs, and general renovation and remodeling.

      Throughout the FCS, there are currently 2,171 buildings totaling 42,306,500 gross square feet, with an average age of 26.8 years. The cost to replace this amount of square footage (at current construction costs) would total approximately $12.7 billion. The degradation of facilities – including age, use and environmentally-related occurrences – creates life-to-safety hazards and a failing infrastructure which impacts the health of students, faculty and staff.


  • Operating Cost of New Facilities (OCNF)
    • In the past two years, the FCS has opened 562,721 new gross square feet. Traditionally, the legislature has appropriated funds for the operating cost of new facilities. Despite the significant increase in gross square footage, the FCS did not receive OCNF funds for 2017-18 and only received an annualized portion the previous fiscal year. The COP requests consideration for operating costs of new facilities.



About The florida college system

The Florida College System (FCS) serves as the primary entry point to higher education for Florida students and has been recognized as the nation’s best. Since the Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence was first awarded in 2011, two FCS institutions have won the prize, three were named finalists with distinction, and over half have been among the nation’s top 150. The 28 colleges of the FCS provide the necessary programs for transfer students to the State University System (SUS), meet local workforce needs through degree and certificate programs, and offer low-cost baccalaureate degree programs in areas with demonstrated workforce need.


Founded in 1949 as the Florida Association of Public Junior Colleges by the presidents of Florida’s first four public junior colleges, the organization changed its name to the Association of Florida Colleges in 2010 to reflect the growth in many colleges to include baccalaureate degree programs and institutional name changes. It has become the most inclusive higher education organization serving any college system in the nation. The AFC is the only organization which represents all employees, presidents, and trustees associated with a college system. Today, all 28 of the state’s colleges support the work of the Association through institutional dues as do nearly 7,000 regular and retired members through the sharing of their talents, time and energy. AFC advocates on behalf of and administers the operations of the Council of Presidents since 2001.

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