After Decade Of Cuts, Proposal Boosts Funding For Michigan Colleges

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

After what university leaders have sometimes called a "decade of disinvestment," Michigan's public universities are poised to get a rare increase in state funding next fiscal year — and it could bring some tuition relief for students.

The proposed additional state money — 3 percent on average — comes with strings attached, and some universities would fare better than others under the recommendations this month from Republican Gov. Rick Snyder. Universities would be expected to keep their tuition increases at or below 4 percent to get some extra money for the fiscal year that starts Oct. 1.

Smaller tuition increases would be welcomed by Michigan university students, who have faced significantly higher bills in large part because state government reduced taxpayer assistance for general operations over the past decade.

The average, enrollment-weighted listed price of tuition and fees at a public university in Michigan climbed from $6,294 in 2004-5 to $10,837 this academic year for in-state residents, according to The College Board. There's a wide range of tuition costs among the state's 15 public universities, but the general trend has been higher costs.

Read more »