Students and faculty at Colorado State University-Pueblo are furious after news of a budget problem came to light a few weeks ago.
CSU-Pueblo President Lesley Di Mare notified the campus last month that she was directed by CSU System Chancellor Michael Martin to trim $3.3 million from the budget.
Students and faculty alike say they were stunned to abruptly learn the university is facing some serious budget issues. Students say professors told them when they started classes after the winter break that they did not know which services will be cut.
According to the Pueblo Chieftain, state lawmakers from the district are urging Martin to reconsider cuts that could mean the layoff of as many as 50 faculty and staff members next year.
The university sites decreasing enrollment and rising operations costs as the reasons behind the monetary issues. They say the majority of their operations go towards paying salaries, so they are looking at cuts in all departments. The university says the number of layoffs could be less than 50 depending on the salaries of the people let go.
Thursday, a group rallied against the proposed cuts. Protesters in downtown Pueblo could be seen marching behind a huge "Save CSU-Pueblo" banner, carrying signs with statements such as "Students First! Find the Budget!" and "Save My Future, Stop Budget Cuts!"
University staff will be holding a forum Friday afternoon from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. in the OUC ballroom to discuss how they will move forward.
Protesters will be out once again, meeting at 2 p.m. Friday at the university's central fountain.
11 News will continue to follow developments out of the university.