ST. CLOUD -- We're continuing our countdown of the Top 10 local news stories of the year.  Today (Monday) we have the #5 story.  The budget problems at St. Cloud State University, which lead to the talk of program cuts both on the sports fields and in the classrooms.

SCSU President Earl Potter dropped a bomb shell on Husky sports fans back in August when he announced he was considering the elimination of several sports programs, including the football team, in an effort to balance the Athletic Department's budget, which was facing a $600,000 deficit.  However, the SCSU students voted in November to raise their own activity fees by $1.74 a credit for the next three years, which ended-up saving all sports teams.

Meanwhile, Potter also cut 34 academic programs this year.  There were 26 cuts in the spring, and another eight cuts -- including the Aviation Department -- were announced in September.

The final piece of the cuts came in November when Potter announced the reorganization of the University, going from five colleges down to four.  The cuts and the reorganization mean the elimination of several staff positions.  The University needed to make $14 million in cuts to balance the budget for the next fiscal year.

Tune-in tomorrow (Tuesday) to hear our #4 story of the year.