A compromise higher education budget bill ready for a final vote at the Minnesota Legislature is getting good marks from both sides of the aisle, including the Walz administration. Office of Higher Education Commissioner Dennis Olson:
“A strong higher ed bill here…. A strong compromise for all.”
The bill caps annual tuition increases at three-and-a-half percent in the state college and university system, increases grants to low- and middle-income families, ups funding for scholarship programs — and backers say it will reduce textbook costs. Minnesota State and the U-of-M get a smaller funding increase than requested, but key lawmakers appear satisfied with the amount:
Vernon Center Republican Senator Julie Rosen: “Senator Tomassoni, you got exactly what you asked for, didn’t you?”
Chisholm Independent Dave Tomassoni: “If I had known that, madame chair, I woulda asked for more.”
Rosen: “Nice try, Senator Tomassoni.”
Under the bill, Minnesota State receives about a 56-million-dollar increase — less than half the 120-milllion they requested. The U-of-M gets about a 38-million-dollar bump — versus 46 million they asked for.