The State Board of Regents approved a double-digit tuition increase in tuition today for the three state-supported Universities. The cost of college for students at Iowa State, Iowa and UNI will increase 18 and-a-half percent in 2003. All three school presidents, including the University of Iowa’s Mary Sue Coleman, supported the increase.Coleman says the increase will restore about half of the money that’s been cut from university budgets since July of 2000. Student leaders opposed the increased. U-of-I student body president Nick Klenske expressed frustration that the regents didn’t respond to their opposition. He says when students expressed concerns at the October meeting, there was no discussion, indicating that the “student voice does not matter.”Regent David Neil of La Porte City said it was not easy to vote for the increase. But, Neil said it is important to continue delivering quality education.Neil says the blame for the increase falls on legislators, not the regents.as he says the fight is “under the dome in Des Moines” as the legislature is still cutting taxes despite poor budget forecasts. The only Regent to vote against the increase was student member Lisa Ahrens.Ahrens says she’s concerned they’re sending the message it’s okay for the Legislature to cut, because they can make it up in a tuition increase. The increase in tuition will cost in-state students an extra 576-dollars. Other mandatory fees will increase between 90 and 100 dollars depending on the school The Regents approved the tuition increase at their meeting today in Cedar Falls.
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