Regents Budget Includes 4 Percent Funding Increase, Tuition Freeze

By Erin Jordan, Reporter

The Campanile at Iowa State University. (image via ISU's Web site)

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By Richard Pratt

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The Iowa Board of Regents would freeze tuition for Iowa undergraduates for a second year under a budget proposal that seeks a 4 percent increase in state funding for fiscal 2015.

The regents on Wednesday unanimously approved an appropriations request of $652.7 million for fiscal 2015.
This includes a $44.2 million, or 4 percent, increase from fiscal 2014 to strengthen educational quality, improve retention and graduation rates and add more financial aid, among other initiatives.

“In addition to supporting important priorities, it would allow the Board of Regents to once again freeze tuition for Iowa undergraduates for the second year in a row,” Regents President Bruce Rastetter said.

The appropriation includes funding for the University of Iowa, Iowa State University, University of Northern Iowa, as well as deaf and blind education and Iowa Public Radio. The regents institutions educate 76,000 students a year, employ 47,000 Iowans and generated $17.2 million royalty and fee income in fiscal 2012.

Rastetter plans to meet with the Legislative and Fiscal Committee Thursday in Cedar Falls to talk about the 2015 budget request, which will be considered by the Iowa Legislature in early 2014. He encouraged university faculty, students and alumni to “tell their story” and lobby for the increase.

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