Dr. Anthony Tricoli, the president of Georgia Perimeter College, was removed from his post Monday and reassigned by the chancellor of the university system of Georgia.
The announcement came in a letter from Chancellor Hank Huckaby to the staff.
The Crier obtained a copy last week of an audit showing GPC with a shortfall in its budget of $16 million, a deficit compiled over the last five years. Tricoli became president of Georgia's third-largest post-secondary institution in 2007.
The Crier also obtained a letter from GPC's executive vice president for finance, Ron Carruth, to staff announcing drastic spending cuts and a hiring freeze. The memo also announced a freeze on travel with very few exceptions. He also temporarily deactivated all Purchase Cards and freeze on spending requests until July 1, again with few exceptions.
The $16 million shortfall in the college budget for the fiscal year that ends June 13. The deficit is an underlying one that Huckaby said would affect the next fiscal year as well. Additional university system funds will be used to close the gap, in addition to the measures announced by GPC. Huckaby said personnel cuts may follow.
Tricoli has presided over unprecedented growth at GPC with 26,000 students taking classes in Dunwoody, Clarkston, Covington, Decatur and Alpharetta.
That expansion has made Tricoli a controversial figure in Dunwoody, where the rapid expansion saw a campus designed for less than 5,000 students grow to be the second largest unit of GPC and approaching 10,000 students, with projections for more.
The college is served by residential two-lane streets. Its traffic loads, especially in rush hour have made some residents captives. Tricoli resisted city and citizen requests for a shuttle bus system and an off-campus parking facility.
The tension between college and community led to the creation of a town and gown committee that meets twice a year.
Tricoli has been assigned to the office of the university system where he will work on distance learning and other programs.