News: Press Releases

August 21, 2015

UMass urges full funding of budget

  • The UMass System
Student affordability cited as top priority

BOSTON -- Aug. 21, 2015: Responding to a call from Senate President Stanley C. Rosenberg, UMass officials today said there was a fiscal path that could still lead to the complete elimination of the student fee increase put in place for the 2015-2016 academic year.

“Senate President Rosenberg suggests paring back this year’s fee increase but UMass could eliminate it entirely if he could win full funding for our budget and collective-bargaining requirements,” UMass Vice President for Communications Robert P. Connolly said. “The supplemental budget process provides the perfect opportunity for taking what would be a significant and much-appreciated step. This action could ease the burden on students and their families immeasurably.”

UMass this year sought $578 million in funding for the five-campus University of Massachusetts system and said it would freeze tuition and fees if state funding came in at that level.

While the new state budget provides a lower amount of funding for UMass -- $531 million -- the Legislature is expected to act on a supplemental budget bill next month.

Under its 50-50 program, UMass was able to freeze tuition and mandatory fees for in-state undergraduate students over the past two academic years, due to a $100 million increase in state funding. This year’s $531 million is only $12 million higher than the $519 million appropriation signed into law last year.

But UMass could still rebate the fee increase put in place with sufficient funding.

“A third freeze would be our preferred course, and we look to Senate President Rosenberg for his support and leadership,” Connolly said.

 

Contact: Laura Wareck, 617-646-1037