Thursday, February 23, 2006

University Budget Cuts

I read this morning in the Herald Journal that Utah's institutions of higher learning took a huge hit on Tuesday on Capitol Hill when the legislative budget recommendation for higher education was reduced to a fraction of the original request.

The higher education subcommittee recommended a 26.4 million budget to help universities in the state with operating budgets and faculty retention. Legislators were thinking of a number closer to 4.1 million!

Eight out of 10 University presidents cruised to Salt Lake City to voice that disappointment. Why the cut? Utility bills are sky high. Heating the buildings and keeping the lights burning are a costly necessity. We students get to dig a lot deeper into our pockets to gain an education. Some programs may be scaled down or cut. The focus remains on elementary and secondary education funding. Sure...the little kids need to know their "three R's....reading, writing, and arithmetic" a whole lot more. But getting a degree at a University is also becoming increasingly difficult. Will gaining a higher education only be for the gifted and the rich? Higher education obviously doesn't rank too highly right now in Utah. I hope my taxpayer dollars are well-spent. These legislators are well payed to figure out this money mess. And please....don't raise my taxes too.

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