University of Illinois Trustees have been asked to increase tuition within the rate of inflation for next academic year.
At their meeting in Chicago next week, they’ll be asked to raise it by 1.7 % on the three campuses, the same increase approved for last fall. A Trustees committee recommended the plan Monday.
It would raise tuition for in-state students to about $12,000 at the Urbana-Champaign campus, nearly $10,600 in Chicago and around $9,400 in Springfield. Only incoming students would pay the higher rates.
U of I President Robert Easter says larger tuition hikes prior to this year were due in part to lagging state support. He says setting the rate now helps both the U of I and families plan budgets… and sends a challenge to lawmakers:
“I think what we’re saying is, we hear that concern," Easter said. "And as a result of that, we’re attempting to maintain our tuition at a level that’s affordable. One would certainly hope that message resonates with the legislature, and they do their best to provide us with an appropriation that’s at least as good as the one we had this past year.”
The U of I appropriation for fiscal 2014 was nearly $670-million. Easter says any reduction in that amount will create a challenge, but the university won’t revisit tuition rates.
Trustees will also be asked next week to approve a resolution allowing the president and his staff spend a few months developing a supplemental U of I employee retirement plan, making up for pension cuts.
The strategy to preserve benefits through an employee matching program stems from the pension reform plan approved by lawmakers, which takes effect June 1st.