U of L Likely to Raise Tuition Following Budget Cuts

by Devin Katayama on January 18, 2012

The University of Louisville will likely raise tuition when Kentucky’s Council on Postsecondary Education sets the limits for increases later this year.

“We’ll be working with the CPE over the next three months on what the actual tuition increase will be,” said James Ramsey, U of L president.

Higher education wasn’t hit as hard as some other state agencies from Gov. Steve Beshear’s latest budget proposal, which cut many agencies by 8.4 percent. Higher education was cut by 6.4 percent.

The hiring freeze enacted this year at U of L will continue indefinitely while the university makes its financial decisions about how to adjust to the cut, said Ramsey. Right now, it’s still premature to make any decisions, he said.

“We’ll talk about can we provide any raises, will there be layoffs, so all those things will be decided and we’re beginning those conversations with the faculty, the staff, the students,” said Ramsey.

U of L has increased its tuition the maximum amount allowed by the Council for Post Secondary Education (CPE) for the past few years, he said.

Between 2006 and 2011 then annual resident undergraduate tuition and mandatory fees for a full time student at U of L increased from $6,252 to $9,126, which is a 46 percent increase, according to data from CPE. The average annual growth rate for the period is 7.9 percent per year.

Beshear has, however, approved bonds for millions of dollars for university projects. The largest support he offered was to the University of Kentucky, which got the nod for $200 million for various projects in addition to the $175 million to expand its residence hall.

U of L was approved for nearly $40 million worth of projects, including $19.5 million to expand the student activities center, $15 million to build a new entry way to the campus on the northeast corner near I-65, and $4.5 million toward an contract with Siemens, which U of L hired to install energy saving systems around campus.

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