Oregon Community Colleges Denied State Security Funding

Lawmakers asked the state’s community colleges to wait a year for an increase in security funding.

In the wake of October’s deadly shooting at Umpqua Community College in Oregon, state lawmakers approved $6 million to renovate the hall where the shootings occurred and improve the school’s security measures.

Lawmakers, however, did not extend the wish for additional security measures to other community colleges in the state. A $17.6 million request to improve security measures at Oregon’s other 16 community colleges was not approved. Lawmakers instead told the colleges to reapply next year, according to Oregon Live.

“Waiting until next year doesn’t do us any good,” said Brent Finkbeiner, student government president at Clackamas Community College and board chair of the Oregon Community College Student Association.

Clackamas is not immune to mass shootings: In 2012, one occurred across the street from its campus at a mall.

The $17.6 million request would replace doors, install surveillance cameras and beef up aging buildings and communication systems at the colleges, according to the report. Finkbeiner says the colleges have few security systems along with poorly lit parking lots and walkways.

Nine students were shot and killed at Umpqua Community College on Oct. 1 by a student who later died in a firefight with police.

In addition to lawmakers passing on the security proposal, Clackamas could soon be getting rid of a program that has armed security guards on campus.

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