GOP senators put forth college funding bill

  • By Jerry Cornfield
  • Thursday, March 21, 2013 1:29pm
  • Local News

Republican senators moved forward today with their plan for reasserting state control on the running of Washington’s community colleges and public universities.

They introduced a bill promising steady funding for colleges based on enrollment while demanding tuition be cut by 3 percent for next year’s students.

“A highly subsidized state-controlled model is good for our economy and that is what we have to get back to,” Sen. Michael Baumgartner, R-Spokane, said Wednesday of the strategy embodied in Senate Bill 5883.

The bill encompasses the policy changes outlined at a Tuesday press conference conducted by Baumgartner and other members of the Senate Majority Coalition. Senators pledged to steer $300 million more into higher education in the next budget though no sum of money is included in the bill.

The bill spells out the formula under which universities and community colleges would tie an annual allotment of funding with the enrollment of full-time students. It would increase each year by the rate of inflation.

Colleges could snag additional dollars based on other factors such as the number of students who earn degrees in high demand fields, graduate in four years and come from low-income families. Schools also can be rewarded for using classrooms more hours in the day.

Meanwhile, the bill requires a 3 percent cut in tuition for community college and university students effective this fall. The directive comes less than two years after the Legislature awarded colleges the authority to set their own tuition rates.

As of this afternoon, no hearing had been set for the bill.

More in Local News

Second teen charged after $1 million in school vandalism

Two teens now face felony charges for damage at two schools in Darrington last summer.

This dental office devoted a day to free care for veterans

All Smiles Northwest in Everett was among businesses observing Freedom Day USA.

A potentially transformative council election in Snohomish

As the city adopts a new form of government, many new faces are seeking office.

Majority of Marysville City Council seats are contested

The most closely watched race is between Mark James and Donna Wright.

Mill Creek hires Gina Hortillosa as public works director

Hortillosa will be responsible for creating strategic infrastructure plans to promote economic growth.

Inclusion super important to Monroe High senior

Sarah Reeves worked to make homecoming more representative of the student population.

500 tires go up in flames at a store south of Everett

There were no injuries. And it was nowhere near as bad as that months-long tire fire in 1984.

1 shot dead, another wounded in apparent Everett robbery

There are indications the victims might have known the shooter, who apparently fled in a vehicle.

Most Read