Read this item some of which I removed to give you the basics…
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — State universities still trying to recover from deep cuts last year would have their public funding slashed even further under a budget plan unveiled Tuesday, leading some institutions to warn of a choice between maintaining buildings and offering academic programs students need to graduate.
Students also would receive less financial aid under the $27.1 billion spending plan for 2012-13 put forth by Gov. Tom Corbett. He called the proposal “lean and demanding” as the state grapples with tepid revenues and higher costs. It still requires legislative approval.
The Republican governor seeks to cut $330 million, or 20 percent, from 14 state-owned universities. He also wants to reduce aid to Penn State, the University of Pittsburgh and Temple University by about 30 percent.
Yet Corbett seemed to acknowledge the distress such cuts could cause by simultaneously announcing the creation of a panel to examine higher education funding — a problem he said needs to be addressed “without rancor and dramatics.”
University leaders said they are still reeling from cuts of about 19 percent last year, which led to tuition increases between 5 percent and 10 percent. In January, the schools were asked to cut back another 5 percent because state revenues were below projections.
Penn State has already eliminated hundreds of jobs, cut programs, merged academic departments and instituted a salary freeze, the university said in statement Tuesday.
Now, Corbett is proposing another $64 million reduction in state aid next year.
If the governor’s plan is adopted, Temple will have lost more than half its state subsidy over the past two years, university President Ann Weaver Hart said.
The 14 universities in the State System of Higher Education collectively would lose $82 million, taking the schools back to nearly the same funding level they had in 1988-89, according to a system statement.
Corbett proposed a 4 percent funding decrease for community colleges and a 6 percent cut at the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency, which offers financial aid to students.
However, it’s possible that the proposed reductions will be softened by the time state lawmakers approve a budget.
The 14 state universities are Bloomsburg, California, Cheyney, Clarion, East Stroudsburg, Edinboro, Indiana, Kutztown, Lock Haven, Mansfield, Millersville, Shippensburg, Slippery Rock and West Chester.
OK, I get it. I believe the governor is attempting to make colleges and universities get in line with the rest of us tightening our belts. I think he’s counting on them to make cuts, be frugal and stop killing the middle class with tuition hikes all the time. And don’t cry to me colleges and universities. No one told you to invest your money in the stock market.
But in the meantime, hey governor, I’m going broke here. With two in college and two more coming soon to a college or university near you, there’s no way for me to keep up. Heck, they won’t even lend me any more money!
So while I think I understand your reasons, please, please don’t make this any more stressful than it already is. All we parents do is sit around the complain how we can’t afford to send our kids to college. And to pay for college these days I would have had to save just about any money I ever earned. These kids need reasonable tuition, books that don’t cost hundreds to buy and pennies on the return, and a way to earn money or credit to their bill by working or something. Something!
I am calling on our area legislators to end this madness. Kids are coming out of school with tens of thousands of dollars in tuition debt. It’s sad really.
So who’s going to step up? I’m waiting to see who has the guts…
— Andy Hachadorian