Declining enrollments require budget cuts, but the faculty union at Green River College is not wanting to budge an inch.

Katherine Long writes at The Seattle Times:

Green River College, faculty union deadlocked over potential cuts

Classes have ended for the academic year at Green River College in Auburn, but there’s no end in sight to a dispute between the faculty union and the college’s administration, which have been at odds over a contract for more than a year.

Although all of the state’s community colleges face the double-whammy of state budget cuts and shrinking enrollments, Green River is the only public college where budget issues have become so contentious.

President Eileen Ely wants to close three Green River programs because of declining enrollment and a looming $5.7 million shortfall. Faculty-union officials argue that she is trying to close programs run by their members in an attempt to intimidate the union.

There have been marches on campus, calls for Ely to resign, two no-confidence votes on her leadership and, most recently, a vote in favor of a measure authorizing the union to call for a strike if necessary. Meetings of the board of trustees have been packed with dissenters.