Saturday, February 07, 2009


The latest on the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund from Inside Higher Ed firms up the numbers I wrote about in my last post . The result is a bleak picture for higher education in Pennsylvania, Penn State included
The Senate version would also provide significantly less money to states that have been counting on the stimulus package to help them backfill budget gaps for education programs. The original Senate legislation, like the House version, would have created a $39 billion “stabilization” fund designed to be distributed to states to keep their higher education and K-12 budgets at their 2008 levels, as well as $25 billion in additional money for states to use to sustain crucial public services, including education.

Under the revised Senate version, the stabilization fund would be cut by a third, to $26.7 billion, and the additional $25 billion pool would shrink to $9.6 billion.

This is likely to be a major issue in states such as Missouri, where Gov. Jay Nixon’s agreement with university leaders to keep higher education whole in the 2010 budget, in exchange for freezing tuition, depends on the federal stimulus funds to make it work.
The IHE piece is well worth a read, as it contains a complete run down of the implications of the senate bill for higher education. Not all of the implications are bleak, for example, increased funding for Pell grants remains in the compromise bill.

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