The existing Brentwood Center is costing $68,000 a month and its location is not suitable as it sits in a high density retail establishment.
The new center is planned to be completed and open approximately Sep 2020 to support student needs in a 17 acre environment in the Trilogy/Marsh Creek Road Location.
I support the Governing Board’s decision to go ahead with the center as part of phased plan for enrollment with the first phase planned to support forecasted enrollment with a future phase to increase capacity as enrollment increases.
The initial facilities that are being constructed will provide what is required for the existing student population and is not expected to reach capacity for many years, at which point the 2nd phase of the project will be reviewed for additional construction. This is a smart approach as it ensures that the costs are aligned with the needs of students when it opens and for future students.
Mr. Enholms position’s has resulted in numerous delays. Delaying the construction of the center would not serve the needs of the district or its students and would ultimately result in higher costs with no benefits to the district, its students and its taxpayers.
Delays also impact the jobs of workers who would contribute to its construction.
Mr. Enholm who was an instructor at DeVry and Heald, the two failed for-profit institutions, four years ago ran on the platform opposing the 17-acre campus and advocated for a 110-acre campus.
He voted for the Brentwood Center as part of the Governing Board recommendation and helped in its bond passage, but continues to pursue a bigger campus even though no location is available and a bigger campus is not approved by the Community College Board.
If a bigger campus were to be built it would mean a tax increase for working families. The need for a larger campus is not practical or a wise use of taxpayer dollars. The LMC campus has unused capacity and forecasted enrollment trends shows that an extension Center will meet the needs of future students as enrollment starts to creep up. The trend of on-line classes also continues to grow reducing the need for increased facilities.
There were discussions early on to move from the planned Trilogy and Marsh Creek Road location, however a feasibility study concluded there is no reasonable alternative to the original site, and the governing board voted 4-1 not to move the site, which it had already purchased. BART had urged possibly moving the site to Highway4 and Mokelume Trail, however, the BART Board had made no official decision to pursue property for a future eBART station near the intersection of Highway 4 and the Mokelumne Trail.
We have no secured land for a site near an eBART.
It would take an additional three or four years and cost an additional $750,000 or more in site-selection processing expenses alone. The move would also need to be approved by the California Community Colleges Board of Governors or the district could risk losing lose $1.1 million per year in current revenue. Pursing a new larger campus could result in a 10 year delay at a minimum and impacting the services that are required for students.
The existing construction at planned facility at the 17 Acre center is estimated at this time to be $43.6 Million dollars. The costs to move to a 110 Acre campus would be astronomical in comparison with the taxpayers footing the bill for this increase, with no current basis for its usage based on enrollment needs and trends compared to the approved 17 acre campus.
Mr. Enholm’s delaying tactics in stalling the construction has already cost the district thousands of dollars. Mr. Enholm continues to advocate for a larger campus for Antioch, Oakley and Brentwood. However, unless those communities are willing to pay an increase in taxes, as the entire District taxpayers would not support it based on past tax increase elections. A key reason Measure E passed was because there was something for every taxpayer.
Mr. Enholm continues to advocate for a campus in Antioch and Oakley and stated in part that the reason he won his first election was that he went before those communities and told them he would help build a larger campus. However, these communities were informed that Mr. Enholm did not have the authority of Board approval for such a statement.
Mr. Enholm’s desire to move the campus may be more in self-interest as these new campuses would be in Ward 5, which he presently represents. The planned Brentwood Center is located outside of his ward. Self-interest is never a reason to lobby for change that is not beneficial to the larger community, especially our students.
We need fresh eyes, new ideas, and a leader who can bring people together in order to solve problems with practical ideas and future thinking.
Fernando is listening. Fernando has the education, experience, and commitment to bring needed change.
Vote wisely November 8th.
Resident of Ward 5