Archive for Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Regents repairs will require a lot of dough

April 18, 2007


— As state leaders fight over how to pay for $663 million in repairs to crumbling college classrooms, some students tried selling cookies and candy.

"We sold cookies to restore our classrooms, brownies to fix our buildings and candies to improve our campus," Drew Thomas, Fort Hays State University Student Government Association president, said Tuesday.

The sale cleared $50.70, which students will donate to the Kansas Board of Regents.

Thomas noted at that rate it would take 13,076,923 more bake sales to repair the university buildings.

"The continued inaction on the part of state leaders has made our efforts necessary to this $663 million problem," Thomas said. "We only hope that one day our state universities will be able to fix their buildings without need for our bake sales."

Gov. Kathleen Sebelius on Tuesday asked the Legislature for $62.7 million to fix the highest priority projects at Kansas University and the five other regents institutions.

To kick off the budget sessions, Sebelius proposed $203 million in budget amendments, including funds for school repairs, for the Legislature to consider. The Legislature returns to work April 25.

Sebelius' earlier plan included increasing Kansas Turnpike tolls. Other proposals made by legislators, such as increasing taxes, tuition and athletic ticket prices, failed.

Under Sebelius' new plan, $15 million would go toward paying off debt on previous university projects, thus freeing funds for maintenance.

The remaining $47.7 million would be a one-time appropriation to fund the seven highest priority projects, including repairs to utility tunnels at KU.

Reginald Robinson, regents president and chief executive officer, thanked Sebelius for the budget amendment.

"This is the perfect opportunity, through a one-time appropriation, to take a significant and meaningful step toward solving this growing problem," Robinson said.


Ragingbear 11 years, 1 month ago

Wonderful picture. Too bad it hurt my eyes to try to read. I wonder what it says? Oh well, I will just assume all is well and go warm up my H2.

samsnewplace 11 years, 1 month ago

Again with the number of students who attend KU alone, the cost of tuition rising yearly........what is KU doing with this money? You have alumni who donate BIG TIME to their almamater and what becomes of their donations, art, another new building that will need repair? I'm tired of paying more taxes, more toll fares, etc.....because NOONE can balance a budget. Even Universities have to live "within their means".

Bruce Bertsch 11 years, 1 month ago

Sheesh...Sam, it is the legislature with the recomendations of the regents who budget the money for maintenance of [b]STATE OWNED PROPERTY[/b] on the KU campus. Alum contribute to the endowment, hoever most put strings on the money. You might note that the legislature reduced taxes at least five times while this issue was being raised throughout the years. If they had just funded it in the first place it would be done, and likely for less than they will spend now. The University living within its means is why there is a problem.

booze_buds_03 11 years, 1 month ago

Sam- I will tell you where the money is going, the same place it has always been going. There is just less money there. The state has reduce funding to KU over the last 10-15 years from 49% of their budget to 24% of their budget. This is the reason for rising tuition. Also the state has neglected these building for a long time. They have given tax cuts to private enterprise while failing to take care of the state's biggest business, Higher Education

Wilbur_Nether 11 years, 1 month ago

Bowhunter99 wrote "I think KU's budget has risen SO fast and become SO large that the State's funding now account for ONLY 24% of their budget."

This is true from a certain perspective. A study of the budgetary process over the last several decades shows that State's funding has been well below the rate of inflation. By zeroing out the inflationary increases in the last several years, one finds the State's support for KU--and the other regents institutions--has declined.

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