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The University of Nebraska Board of Regents will vote on University of Nebraska-Lincoln tuition increases for the 2019-20 and 2020-21 academic years at a meeting Friday, June 28. 

Outgoing NU President Hank Bounds will present these and other recommendations to the board at the meeting, which starts at 9:30 a.m. in the boardroom of Varner Hall, 3835 Holdrege St.

Bounds is recommending an average tuition increase of 2.75% for in-state undergraduate students and 3.75% for out-of-state undergraduate students in academic years 2019-20 and 2020-21 across the university system. 

“Increasing tuition is never the goal,” Emily Johnson, president of UNL’s Association of Students of the University of Nebraska, said. “As a student regent, I appreciate [the] administration's efforts to keep the tuition increase low, and I hope students are able to adjust for the average $5-7 increase per credit hour.”

Johnson, as ASUN president, is a non-voting member of the Board of Regents.

She said if the tuition increase passes, ASUN will work to connect students to money management resources to help them adjust. She said ASUN will also be diligent in evaluating ways it can keep student fees affordable. 

The proposal also calls for NU to increase support for Collegebound Nebraska, a need-based financial aid program for in-state students, at the same rate as tuition, so that students with the greatest financial need are not impacted by the tuition increase.

According to Bounds’s proposal, tuition rates will remain some of the lowest in the Big 10, and changes will only generate a 1% increase in net tuition revenues. The proposal said enrollment pressures resulting from today’s highly competitive market for students have caused stagnant revenue growth.

In addition to tuition costs, the board will vote on fiscal year 2019-20 operating budgets, deciding on allocations for UNL’s 2019-20 Fund B University Program and Facilities Fees. 

In the proposal, UNL Chancellor Ronnie Green recommends an allocation of $27,091,135 for UPFF in the 2019-20 academic year, an increase of $70,715 from 2018-19. The cost per student per semester would then increase $2.79 for part-time students and $1.35 for full-time students.

Funding for all facilities, such as the Nebraska Union and Campus Recreation, will remain the same, but funding for program operations, such as the Nebraska Unions, Campus Recreation, the University Health Center and Transit Services, would increase.

According to the proposal, the budget and tuition increases can be accredited to the three funding reductions NU has experienced in the past two years. These reductions have resulted in $22 million worth of cuts to the administration costs and $6 million of cuts to programs, as well as tuition increases. By cutting spending, the university was able to keep last year’s operating budget flat and keep tuition rates affordable for students, the proposal said.

For 2019-20 and 2020-21, NU submitted a budget request for the state to cover some, but not all, of salary, health insurance, utility and general operations costs. The legislature and Gov. Pete Ricketts fully accepted this request for state funding increases of 3% in 2019-20 and 3.7% in 2020-21. 

news@dailynebraskan.com