Ball State approves lowest tuition increase since 1976

The Daily News

Ball State’s funding situation is slowly improving, and students and faculty will start receiving the benefits in the Fall Semester.

Ball State’s Board of Trustees approved a 2 percent increase in tuition and fees for each of the next two years, the lowest since 1976, and a 3 percent increase in salaries and wages for faculty during its meeting.

The increase will be $90 per semester in 2013-14 and $92 per semester in 2014-15 for in-state, full-time students.

The increase is still larger than Indiana University-Bloomington’s 1.75 increase and Purdue’s choice to freeze tuition, but the state handed Ball State major cuts in the 2009-11 and 2011-13 biennia. The state gave Ball State a modest increase overall in the 2013-15 biennium.

Randy Howard, vice president for business affairs and treasurer, said the small increase is a result of a few factors including a growth in enrollment.

“[We] did at least get some increase from the state, so that helped rather than a cut,” Howard said. “And then we implemented a lot of efficiencies over the last few years and that has helped us.

“I would say the state funding situation is starting to get a little better. I think we still have challenges with the funding formula.”

In the 2013-14 approved budget, faculty and professional staff will receive a 3 percent increase in salaries and wages, with 70 percent of it being merit-based. Ball State staff will receive a 2.5 percent increase in salaries and wages.

The $339.3 million budget will also include $400,000 allocated toward faculty promotions and high-merit increases.

Trustee Frank Hancock, from Indianapolis, said he hopes the funding formula improves to allow even smaller tuition increases in the future.

“I think it’s great that we can hold it to 2 percent. It would be great if we could hold it to zero,” he said during the meeting. “Hopefully as these funding formulas change, maybe we can get more balance for the state universities would be our goal for the future.”

Ball State trustee Rick Hall said he appreciates the administrations to efforts to limit spending.

“While we hate to have any increase in tuition go on the backs of our Ball State families, I feel very good about this 2 percent increase,” he said.“I’d like to express my appreciation to the administration for the ideas they’ve come up with that have saved money that has allowed us to keep spending growth below the rate of inflation.”

Ball State also approved an additional transportation fee which will affect roughly 11,000 students and another 500 who will pay a partial fee. The fee ranges from $20 to $50 based on credit hours and will be assessed to off-campus students taking main campus courses. The fee is designed to support the campus’ shuttle program.

An increase in fees for journalism and telecommunications students is also included in the approved tuition increase. In 2013-14, students in those programs will now pay $125 dollars per semester.

Howard said the increase is a result of the costs of implementing those programs.

The Indiana Commission for Higher Education recommended no more than a 2 percent increase. Ball State was able to meet the commission’s recommendations due to an increase in state support.


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