December 15, 2011 1:21 PM
Natasha Lindstrom, Staff Writer

VICTORVILLE • Victor Valley College’s board members have voted themselves a 60 percent raise, increasing their monthly stipend from $250 to $400.

The VVC Board of Trustees approved the hike at Tuesday night’s meeting. The increase is retroactive back to July 1, according to college spokesman Bill Greulich.

The stipend increase was justified because of the college’s increasing full-time equivalency rate, Greulich said. Community colleges get reimbursed based on full-time equivalency, or FTE, which can equate to one student taking 12 units, three students each taking a four-unit course, or another combination adding up to 12 units.

The move to up the stipends came after a review of board policy found that California Education Code allows for an increase in board member stipends when FTE surpasses a certain level. The board voted 4-1 to adjust the stipends accordingly, with trustee Michael Krause opposing.

“I cannot see giving myself more money — even though (Education) Code states that board members will get that amount over 10,000 FTE — when we are cutting employees and cutting classes,” Krause said in a statement Thursday. “I support the board’s decision and respect each board member’s vote.”

The latest estimates show the number of students enrolled in VVC during fall 2011 fell by 9 percent from fall 2010, but the college’s full-time equivalency rate was up 7.2 percent.

The full-time equivalency figure for fall was 4,146 compared to 3,867 in 2010, data shows. Meanwhile, there are 1,286 fewer students enrolled this fall compared to fall 2010, with the current head count at about 12,366.

Neither Board President Dennis Henderson nor Vice President Joe Range could immediately be reached for comment

Natasha Lindstrom may be reached at (760) 951-6232 or at

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