Mo. Gov. promises millions to higher education

Feb 8, 2012

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon says he want to add $40 million to his higher education budget.  The money would come from a proposed lawsuit settlement with five large mortgage banks over foreclosure practices.

Nixon’s proposal comes just weeks after announcing plans to slash higher education spending by nearly 106 million dollars.  House Budget Chair Ryan Silvey is glad the governor plans to add 40 million dollars to higher ed.

“I’m happy to see that the governor is finally starting to listen to the legislature and the people of this state that are demanding that higher education not continually get eviscerated as they have in their first budgets that he’s recommended,” Silvey said.

However, Maryville Rep. Mike Thomson is urging caution.

"It's good news; we definitely want to embrace that.  But I think we need to go after it cautiously.  I don't know what kind of strings will be attached.  We just need to wait and see before we--I'm pretty skeptical about letting balloons in the air too quick," he said.

Nixon, meanwhile, has warned universities not to raise tuition as a means of closing any of their budget gaps.  However, the University of Missouri System is considering tuition hikes for its campuses in Columbia, Rolla, St. Louis and Kansas City.