State-Related Universities Say It's Time To Act

Mar 3, 2016

Credit (Photo: AP)

Pennsylvania’s four state-related universities are pleading with lawmakers to do whatever’s necessary to approve their annual state aid.

Leaders of Penn State, Pitt, Temple, and Lincoln universities say they’re contemplating borrowing money, making cuts, and raising tuition to deal with a loss of state funding.

University of Pittsburgh Chancellor Patrick Gallagher says the nice thing is that lawmakers are in agreement that the state-related universities should receive state aid.

“Five weeks ago, we had broad, bicameral, bipartisan support for five-percent increases for the current year,” said Gallagher. “It’s only recently that we’ve been caught up in the larger budget impasse.”

The state supplies 15 to 25 percent of the schools’ educational budgets. The universities found themselves dragged into the budget impasse in January. Democrats blocked their $578 million appropriation, arguing that Republicans hadn’t supplied the revenues to support the spending.