College presidents pitched their institutions’ strengths and accomplishments to the Joint Budget Committee and other legislators Monday at the annual day-long hearing on spending for the state’s colleges and universities.
But looming over the session was a bigger question – what happens if there’s no tax support for higher education in the future?
“Enrollment is at an all-time high while funding, as we all know, is going in the opposite direction,” noted Lt. Gov. Joe Garcia, who’s also executive director of the Department of Higher Education. “We know that some of our institutions are on increasingly shaky financial ground.”
Complete loss of state support “is a reality if we don’t change our [state] funding system in the next three to five years,” warned House Minority Leader Mark Ferrandino, D-Denver.