Following the passage of the Building Our Future Bond Act in November, the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey is set to pursue money to help pay for projects.
The college’s Board of Trustees approved a resolution seeking an undetermined amount of money made available by the passage of the act at its meeting Wednesday afternoon, Feb. 20.
The act authorizes the state to issue $750 million for public and private colleges and universities for upgrades to academic and research facilities.
Of the $750 million, $247 million has been set aside for state colleges, the category Stockton falls into. There is no formula for determining how much money would be allotted to each college, and there is no guarantee Stockton will receive any money.
The college is going to submit a proposal with no specific amount requested to the New Jersey Secretary of Higher Education. The initial deadline is March 11, with the final deadline set for March 23. There will be another cycle in the fall.
Stockton will apply for funds to cover the completion of its Unified Science Center, an addition to the Unified Science Center and a new classroom building. An estimated cost for all three of these projects is about $63 million, with the completion of the Science Center costing about $17.6 million; the addition to the center costing $28.6 million; and the new classroom building costing about $18 million.
The Unified Science Center was built in a way so that the expansion is possible.
“The science building is a priority because it’s ready for completion,” Stockton College President Herman J. Saatkamp said. “ … The expansion can be added toward Vera King Farris Drive.”
The Science Center is being constructed in Parking Lot 4, while the new classroom building would be constructed in Parking Lot 2, if approved.
Should the application see approval, the college will save a significant amount of money it would have had to find in other areas.
“This enables us not to take funds from elsewhere,” Stockton College President Herman J. Saatkamp said. “It allows us to save money and provide more for our students.”
Saatkamp expects to know the result of the college’s application in the spring.
In October, New Jersey Senate President Stephen Sweeney toured Stockton’s campus, ahead of the vote on the bond act, which took place as part of November’s election.