Posted: April 20, 2008

Contact: Doug Anderson,, 651-201-1426

Legislature trims Minnesota State Colleges and Universities budget; Board set to consider lowest tuition increases in a decade

Minnesota State Colleges and Universities officials said today that the legislative budget agreement will reduce the system’s appropriation for the coming year by about 1 percent. Now that the budget reductions are set, the Board of Trustees is expected to act Wednesday on proposed average tuition increases of 2 percent at the state colleges and 3 percent at the state universities next year.

“We are pleased that we will be able to hold tuition increases to the lowest in a decade,” said James H. McCormick, chancellor of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system. “In addition, a bonding bill passed in April provides the system with the largest amount we ever received for much-needed repairs, renovation and construction.”

In April, Gov. Tim Pawlenty signed into law a bonding bill providing $234.2 million in funds for repairs and safety improvements at the 32 state colleges and universities and for renovation and construction projects that will include new classrooms, labs and student service space. The funding total includes $56.9 in user financing to be paid by the system.

The system’s budget increase over the 2008-2009 biennium now will be $143.9 million, a net reduction of about $7.9 million from the $151.8 million increase approved in last year’s session by the Legislature and Gov. Tim Pawlenty.

“We know that legislators and the governor had difficult decisions to make to balance the budget, and we recognize that they worked to protect the public’s investment in higher education,” McCormick said. “Overall, it was a good session for higher education.”

In addition, contracts for all of the system’s faculty and staff were approved by the Legislature and signed by the governor during the session.

A list of specific bonding projects approved for Minnesota State Colleges and Universities is attached