Legislative Update – May 2, 2017

Higher Education Conference Committee adopt budget provisions

The Higher Education Conference Committee met on Monday to complete their work and adopt budget provisions. Last week, the conference committee adopted their policy provisions.

With a budget target of $125 million, which was announced by the House and Senate leadership on Friday, the conference committee members worked to find a compromise between the original House and Senate positions. The final engrossment can be found HERE.

Items that pertain to the Office of Higher Education include:

  • The State Grant received an increase of $18.5 million
  • $350,000 to develop a new grant matching program to provide emergency assistance for post-secondary institutions to support those students in need.
    $6 million to support spinal cord injury and traumatic brain injury research grants.
  • Provide $2 million to Minnesota Life College for need-based scholarships and tuition reduction.
  • $300,000 to support the hiring of a campus sexual violence prevention and response coordinator to serve as a statewide resource providing professional development for post-secondary institutions. $50,000 each year is dedicated for administrative funding to conduct training and provide materials.
  • $400,000 to to develop grant programs for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
  • The assigned family responsibility for the MN State Grant was reduced by 4 percentage points.

    Of the $125 million budget target, Minnesota State received an additional $77.756 million to base funds:

  • $68.536 million was dedicated to Campus Support of which $6 million provides supplemental aid to two-year colleges that have campuses outside of the metro area. A minimum of $100,000 per campus can be awarded with a maximum of $300,000 to an institution.
  • $1 million is dedicated for the Workforce Development Scholarships which would provide scholarships to students at two-year colleges who are enrolled in programs in: advanced manufacturing, agriculture, information technology, or health care services.
  • $8 million to support the replacement of ISRS.
  • $100,000 is awarded in FY2018 only to HealthForce MN to develop educational materials to increase career awareness of career opportunities.

    Provisions on tuition were adopted for Minnesota State which states that tuition at colleges must be frozen for the 2017-2018 academic year and reduced by 1 percent for the 2018-2019 academic year. Tuition at state universities for the 2018-2019 academic year is frozen at the 2017-2018 rate.

    In addition, an amendment was passed that deleted the language that provided a non-exclusive easement to the City of Virginia Housing and Redevelopment Authority.

    The University of Minnesota received an additional $18.674 million to base funds which includes $14 million dedicated to Health Training Restoration; $2 million to support MnDRIVE; $50,00 to complete a study at the University of Minnesota-Morris to develop a program to serve students with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

    Bonding picks up at Capitol

    On Monday, a joint meeting of the Senate Capital Investment and Higher Education committees was held to hear presentations from Minnesota State and the University of Minnesota on their HEAPR requests. Associate Vice Chancellor of Facilities Brian Yolitz and Lori Kloos, CFO at St. Cloud Technical and Community College shared with members campus the critical need on campuses.

    The House released on Monday their bonding bill. A breakdown can be found HERE. The House provides Minnesota State $25 million to address HEAPR needs. In addition it funds, projects at:

South Central College – STEM and Healthcare renovation – North Mankato

Minnesota State Community and Technical College – Center for Student Success – Fergus Falls

Minnesota State Community and Technical College – Library and Student Development renovation – Wadena

Northland Community and Technical College – Laboratory renovation – East Grand Forks

The House Capital Investment Committee will take public testimony on their bill on Wednesday at 3:00 p.m. In addition 33 amendments have been posted so far to the bill. The meeting will be live streamed.

Read more…

Questions? Contact the Government Relations Team:

Jaime Simonsen
Bernie Omann
Jim Grathwol

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