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Statement on senate, house budget proposals (March 30, 2012)

It’s too early to tell how either the Senate or House Appropriations proposals might specifically affect MSU. We’re at the beginning of the budget process, not the end. We look forward to working with the Legislature and the governor as the budget process moves forward.

In the case of the Senate proposal, we’re particularly pleased that the Senate proposal mirrors the governor’s $2.33 million in support of the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams, which promises to bring top global knowledge-economy talent to Michigan. We also appreciate that the Senate’s proposed funding formula incorporates metrics put forward by the Business Leaders for Michigan. Those performance-based measures focus on four key pillars the business community identifies as crucial for 21st-century higher education: excellence, accessibility, affordability and economic impact.

Regarding the House proposal, while we are still evaluating it, we don’t think it meets the goals that were laid out in the governor’s budget or that it puts us on the best path to a stronger Michigan. We believe there are elements in this proposal that are intended to be punitive in nature and that it would force us to raise tuition more than anticipated.

-Heather Swain, VP University Relations