"WVU Tech cannot ignore the cost burdens imposed by athletics, particularly those incurred by the football program," the report continues. "The elimination of football would provide immediate financial benefits."
The report notes that the nearly 50 percent decline in enrollment over the past decade "has left WVU Tech continually starved for operating funds."
It points out that, without an annual $2.5 million subsidy from WVU, WVU Tech would not be able to make payroll.
"Several WVU Tech constituencies believe WVU Tech is a 'cash-cow' but the reverse is true," the report states. "The question is, "How long can WVU Tech be reasonably assured that WVU will provide this subsidy?"
Plymale, meanwhile, suggested that the costs of WVU Tech's revitalization should be shared 50-50 between the Legislature and WVU, but implied that scenario is unlikely.
"If we come up with half, will WVU come up with half?" he asked.
The report goes on to point out that while a majority of students and alumni "favor a free-standing, independent West Virginia Institute of Technology, the [revitalization] team agrees that today, WVU Tech has neither the enrollment nor the financial base to warrant independent status."
"There are few recreational activities in the local community," the report notes. "Students and staff report that students frequently drive to Charleston for recreational and entertainment reasons."
"Several alumni have withheld contributions, unclear as to whether they would be giving to WVU or to Tech," the report notes. "As one alumnus pithily expressed his frustration: "I am a Golden Bear, not a Mountaineer, and I am not sure what my school is."
Committee members will discuss the report in detail during the November legislative interim meetings.
Reach Phil Kabler at ph...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1220.