NJCCC Statement in Response to Governor Murphy’s Fiscal Year 2025 Budget Cuts to Community Colleges

Governor Murphy’s Fiscal Year 2025 proposed State Budget drastically reduces critical state investment in New Jersey’s Community Colleges, inexplicably cutting $20 million from this historically underfunded but vital sector of higher education.

The proposed reduction jeopardizes the operation of New Jersey’s 18 community colleges—which serve over 230,000 residents and power the key industries of our state’s economy. Community colleges, which typically serve the most economically vulnerable students, will be forced to make difficult decisions, including raising tuition, cutting programs and student supports, and reducing staffing.

Even before this proposed reduction, New Jersey’s community colleges rank toward the bottom of the nation for state funding. Governor Murphy’s budget strips out the same $20 million the community colleges received last year with the help of the State Legislature in the FY 2024 state budget. This increase, while important, still left our colleges far behind their counterparts in other states and well behind where we would be if funding kept pace with inflation.

As our newly released Opportunity Agenda makes clear, at this moment when New Jersey is facing rapid and complex economic, technological, social, and climate changes, New Jersey’s 18 community colleges need expanded resources, not cuts to operating aid. Our colleges have a plan to address equity and economic prosperity, including helping all high school students get on a path to postsecondary and career success, helping our employers thrive in the global digital economy, and helping working learners, unemployed and underemployed adults, student parents, justice-impacted individuals, individual with disabilities, immigrants and refugees achieve lifelong academic and career mobility. New Jersey’s community colleges do this work with a relentless commitment to equity, accountability, and results—but our work requires adequate state funding, not budget cuts.

About the New Jersey Council of County Colleges

Governed by the presidents and trustees of the state’s 18 community colleges and enshrined in state law, the New Jersey Council of County Colleges (NJCCC) supports New Jersey’s Community Colleges and the more than 230,000 students they serve annually across 49 locations by fostering collaboration and developing solutions that expand access to college, promote equity and student success, and create a skilled workforce to drive economic growth.

NJCCC brings together the state’s Community Colleges to build a world-class, flexible higher education and workforce development system that can respond to the needs of local communities and employers while having statewide reach and impact. NJCCC promotes innovation and policy changes to help New Jersey’s Community Colleges in their efforts to achieve academic, social, and economic mobility for all residents. The Council’s New Jersey Community College Consortium for Workforce and Economic Development builds statewide industry, education, and labor partnerships that align education and training with the needs of a changing economy.

To learn more about NJCCC and New Jersey’s Community Colleges, go to www.njcommunitycolleges.org. Follow us @NJCommColleges on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube to learn more about our latest programs and initiatives.