A proposal to raise millions of dollars for University of Northern Iowa athletics would take much of the funding the university now designates for sports and replace it with an increase in student fees, The Des Moines Register has learned.
The plan would raise student fees by $25 each year from 2014 to 2020, and would more than double the money students now pay in athletics fees. Students this year are paying about $125, and fees would climb to about $300 by the final year, said UNI President Ben Allen, who first pitched the plan with Athletics Director Troy Dannen.
Allen and Dannen have for years said the Cedar Falls-based university must find new sources of revenue to sustain Panther athletics, which this year operates a $12.3 million budget.
Raising student fees would allow the university to reduce the taxpayer money in the general fund that’s used for athletics. This year, the athletics department received about $1.5 million in student fees and about $4.5 million from the general fund. Those numbers would be reversed by 2020.