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CPE approves budget request to accelerate degree growth, maintain affordability, preserve buildings


The Council on Postsecondary Education approved the 2020-22 budget recommendation for the state’s colleges and universities at its meeting Thursday at Hopkinsville Community and Technical College.

The two main components of the recommendation include an operating funds request for performance funding and a capital request for asset preservation of state-owned buildings.

For performance funding, CPE requested $52.5 million in 2020-21 and $75 million in 2021-22. These institutional operating funds will provide incentives for campuses to maintain affordability, increase student success and course completion outcomes, while accelerating progress toward the goal of 60 percent of working-age Kentuckians with a college-level certificate or degree by 2030.

Now in the third year of implementation, performance funding is encouraging positive impacts on student success outcomes. Over the past two years, following adoption of the performance funding model, degrees and certificates grew at an average rate of about 4 percent per year, up from 1.7 percent the previous year. This growth puts the state on a trajectory to meet the educational attainment goal.

Aaron Thompson

“The legislature and the governor asked that higher education participate in a performance funding system, and we have done that with very successful outcomes,” said CPE President Aaron Thompson. “Now we’re asking for state reinvestment so we can sustain and build upon this historic momentum. This progress is simply not sustainable without additional dollars.”

The total operating funds request is a 6.2 percent increase in the first year and an 8.8% increase in the second year. It also includes base adjustments for debt service and a Kentucky State University land grant match.

Since 2007-08, public institutions have been cut 21 percent in state general fund appropriations and have experienced mandated pension increases.

The second part of the budget request is $200 million in each year of the biennium for asset preservation to address a projected $7 billion need, as identified by a commissioned study. The recommendation calls for $400 million of state bond funds matched with $200 million of campus funds, which would address about 10 percent of the estimated capital investment needs of the state-owned buildings.

CPE’s budget recommendation for asset preservation in previous biennia included a dollar-for-dollar match by the institutions. Following a decade of state funding cuts and mandated pension cost increases, CPE approved an institutional match of 50 cents on the dollar.

In other business, the Council:

• Approved a proposed amendment to 13 KAR 4:010 that changes the language defining the appeals process regarding participation in the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA).

• Approved a proposed amendment to 13 KAR 1:020 that will revise the language regarding the procedures for private college licensing.

• Approved recommendations from the Finance Committee to revise language used in the Nonresident Student Tuition Policy and to renew the tuition reciprocity agreement with West Virginia.

Approved the following programs:

• Murray State University: Master of Science in cyber security management.

• University of Louisville: Master of Science in couple and family therapy.

• Issued a resolution for David Adkisson, outgoing president and CEO of the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce.

• Heard reports from the Council’s president, QA Commons, Committee on Equal Opportunities, the Council’s data and advanced analytics unit, Education Commissioner Wayne Lewis, and reports from the campuses were available.

• Welcomed two new members to the Council—Richard Nelson of Cadiz and EKU senior Grant Minix as our student member.

Chair Sherrill Zimmerman made several appointments to standing committees:

• Academic and Strategic Initiatives Committee: Grant Minix

• Finance Committee: Grant Minix.

• Nominating Committee: Donna Moore

• Committee on Equal Opportunities: Grant Minix, Whitney Allen, Alfonso DeTorres Nunez and Deborah Aparicia.

The next meeting of the Council will be held Jan. 23-24 at the University of Kentucky.

To access more budget information, visit cpe.ky.gov.

From Council on Postsecondary Education


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