Gov. Beverly Perdue’s budget proposal, unveiled Thursday, includes $23 million for enrollment growth at UNC system campuses.
That’s about half of what the UNC system requested, even though Perdue and the university each base their dollar figure on the same projection of 2,337 new students next fall.
Here’s the discrepancy: Perdue’s $23 million is based on her staff’s calculation of what it costs strictly to provide classroom instruction to each of those students. The UNC system’s projection is based on the cost of classroom instruction as well as other services provided to students like the registrar’s office, financial aid and public safety, according to Joni Worthington, a UNC system spokeswoman.
“The funding formula has multiple components and [Perdue] funded a piece of it,” Worthington said. “It would be up to the other institutions to fund the rest.”
Perdue also proposes sending $34.8 million to the UNC system for need-based financial aid. Here too, Perdue and the UNC system are far apart; UNC requested $71 million.
Overall, Perdue proposes a 9.5 percent cut to the operating budgets of the UNC system and its campuses. She said that cut would actually scale back to about six percent once the revenue from a series of tuition increases approved last week is factored in.
Perdue's math there assumes campuses would receive 75 percent of the revenue from those tuition hikes, because she stipulates campuses use 25 percent for financial aid to help offset the extra financial burden created by those tuition increases.
But on some campuses, tuition revenue will be significantly less than what Perdue projects because they already use more than 25 percent of tuition increase revenue for financial aid.
At Fayetteville State University, for example, campus leaders this year plan to use 70 percent of all tuition increase revenue for financial aid.
For more on Perdue's higher education funding plan, click here.