County Sues Eac

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Gila County has filed its long-awaited lawsuit against Eastern Arizona College.

"They're being sued for stuff they owe Gila County and the community college," county legislative liaison Lionel Martinez said.

In the suit, EAC is accused of making a profit from its provision of courses and programs in Gila County despite the fact that on numerous occasions EAC assured the county that all funds collected in Gila County were being used for the education of county residents. The county believes it is owed about $1 million by EAC.

The county also is considering suing the state of Arizona over funding and equalization money. A joint meeting of the Gila County Board of Supervisors and the governing board of the Gila County Community College District will be held at 2 p.m. Oct. 21 in Payson to discuss that subject.

The county severed a 34-year relationship with EAC last year and contracted with Pima Community College to administer credit courses at the Gila Community College campuses. County residents also voted to form a provisional community college district last year, the only one in Arizona.

The state, however, recently passed Senate Bill 1105 which blocks some sources of funding for provisional districts. That bill had the effect of eliminating some $2 million in state support to our district, while every other county in the state received full funding.

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