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Covering state lawmakers, bills, and policy emerging from Jefferson City.

Nixon Reiterates Message to Freeze Tuition During Education Stops

Gov. Jay Nixon
Gov. Jay Nixon's office

College affordability was the topic of discussion during stops in southwest Missouri today by Gov. Jay Nixon.

Nixon met with faculty and students at Crowder College in Neosho this morning before traveling to the high school in Aurora.

The governor cited a recent report by The College Board that found Missouri leading all 50 states in holding down tuition increases at public universities over the last seven years.

“Missouri leads the nation in holding down tuition increases at public universities, helping to put a college education within reach for more students and their families,” Nixon said in a statement.

Nixon’s budget for Fiscal Year 2017 includes an increase of $56 million in performance funding for the state’s public colleges and universities in exchange for a tuition freeze. Earlier this week, the Senate Appropriations Committee agreed with that recommendation. By contract, the budget passed by the House would offer a two percent increase in performance funding for most schools if state revenue meets projections.

In March, The Missouri State University Board of Governors approved a slight increase in tuition and fees for the next school year. But MSU said some of those added costs will be waived should the governor’s recommended budget pass.

Nixon credits steady higher education costs because of programs like $200 million Building Affordability Initiative passed last year. It’s offered capital improvement resources to schools, including $2 million for Crowder College, and $19 million at MSU.

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