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Posts tagged: higher education funding

Senate GOP: Give colleges extra $300 million, cut tuition

OLYMPIA — Senate Republicans announced what they dubbed a bold plan to reverse the trend in the state's public colleges and universities, saying they wanted to add $300 million to the budget for higher education over the next two years and cut tuition by 3 percent.

The extra money amounts to a 10 percent increase in the overall state spending on higher education. Of the total, $50 million would be directed at increasing slots for science, technology, engineering and math degrees, $42 million for lower tuition and $26 million to expand state need grants for children.

But at a press conference called to announce the introduction of the legislation that spells out the plan, sponsors refused to detail how they would find that $300 million in a budget that already is out of balance and has competing demands for the money that is expected to be there. They won't raise taxes, they said.

Sen. Mike Baumgartner, R-Spokane, said state tax receipts are expected to grow by about 7 percent, which will be enough to cover the costs if the Legislature makes higher education a priority. . .

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Jim Camden is a veteran political reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

Jonathan Brunt is an enterprise reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

Kip Hill is a general assignments reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

Nick Deshais covers Spokane City Hall for The Spokesman-Review.

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