ENMU-R mulls future of programs

February 7, 2014 • Local News

Administrators at Eastern New Mexico University-Roswell met this week to discuss the future of the school’s programs following the failure of the mill levy, the university system’s president said Friday.

Steven Gamble, president of ENMU-Portales, could not say whether John Madden, president at the Roswell campus, will remain at the school.

“I don’t discuss personnel issues,” Gamble said.

Madden has come under fire this week following several damaging comments he made regarding opponents to the property-tax increase proposed in the three-mill levy that was voted down Tuesday.

Madden also said Monday that a failure of the mill levy would [auth] result in an immediate negative impact to the school.

“The hard part for us will be Wednesday morning. It could be a really ugly day and I don’t think the community understands that,” he said before the vote.

The university, however, has continued operating, Gamble said. Funding for each institution is budgeted for 12 months prior to the academic year.

“I think what has changed immediately is that they are now meeting on these issues,” Gamble said. “If the millage had passed, there would not be a need to address a budget shortfall.”

Gamble said that prior to the vote, Madden had sufficiently outlined to the public the financial impact that the mill levy failure would have on the school.

“I think Dr. Madden did a good job of outlining the financial impact of a millage if passed or the impact if it didn’t pass,” Gamble said.

Any program changes might take months. Madden is expected to present a plan to Gamble.

“When they’ve got a plan together, it will be presented. It just takes time to go through the budget,” Gamble said. “Our process here at the Portales campus is three months. And again, we don’t know what our state appropriations is going to be.”

Madden has seen the Roswell campus through a budget crisis in the past, Gamble said.

“He has done a really good job in navigating them through that road for the institution,” Gamble said.

Gamble doesn’t try to micromanage the campuses at Roswell or Ruidoso, he said.

“I have confidence in the presidents at Roswell and Ruidoso,” he said. “I give them a lot of leeway at running their institutions. They understand their missions and they understand their role in the community of their institution.”

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