Gov. Jay Nixon wants Missouri's universities to freeze undergraduate tuition next year while also proposing more state funding.
The governor says the budget he recommends next year will include an additional $36.7 million for public universities. The 5 percent funding increase would be distributed using a performance-based funding system.
Nixon announced the proposal Wednesday at Missouri State University in Springfield.
The governor called for a tuition freeze at four-year schools for Missouri undergraduates in the 2014-2015 academic year.
The University of Missouri is expecting fewer freshmen this fall as compared to last year.
A memo from Ann Korschgen, the university's vice provost for enrollment management, and Barbara Rupp, director of admissions, estimates freshman enrollment this fall at 6,165 based on current deposits. That's a drop of nearly 480 from last year.
The Columbia Daily Tribune reports that officials say the university has anticipated the drop in freshmen as the number of high school students in Missouri and the Midwest declines.
A Missouri legislative committee is creating a new funding model for the state's public colleges and universities.
The Joint Committee on Education plans to release a detailed draft Monday at the state Capitol. The panel will accept public comment on the proposal until Feb. 11.
A recently approved state law requires development of a higher education funding formula similar to the one used for public school districts. Missouri now bases funding for colleges and universities largely on how much they've received in past years and how much money is available.
Governor Jay Nixon pitched a nearly $26 billion budget to the state of Missouri during Monday night's State of the State Address. It includes spending increases for K-12 schools, higher education, and the proposed Medicaid expansion he’s been calling for since late November.
The Missouri legislative panel will hold its second of three higher education hearings Tuesday at the University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg.
The legislature’s Joint Committee on Education is working to develop a funding formula that would divide state money given to higher education institutions. State Representative Mike Lair said he would like to see Missouri’s community colleges included in the new budget. But, he said the new budget’s success depends on cooperation from all office holders.