"According to the state Board of Education, not counting unfunded occupancy costs, we would need to increase our student fees another 8 percent just to cover unfunded maintenance costs for operations items," University of Idaho President Duane Nellis told JFAC. "If we were to cover unfunded occupancy costs with student fees, we would need a total fee increase of 10.2 percent overall." But, he said, student debt levels are rising, "and we've very sensitive to this."
In addition to occupancy costs for buildings already constructed, the university has a long list of future renovation and construction projects to address. "Adequate facilities need to be available to our students," he said. "This will require significant investment to create the capacity to achieve the goal."
Said Nellis, "Your investment in higher education ... is one of the single best investments you can make."