[Correction: An earlier version of this story identified the cut to higher ed as $143 million. The story has been adjusted.]
Gov. Bobby Jindal released his executive budget proposal to state lawmakers Friday morning and higher education officials statewide might be exhaling a tempered sigh of relief: Anticipating upwards of $400 million in cuts to state colleges and universities, higher ed is facing a much less daunting proposed cut of $141.3 million. As Nola.com reports, the governor says he will offer ways to further reduce the cuts.
Jindal’s budget recommendations also include a $185,000 dollar funding boost for the Louisiana Procurement Technical Assistance Center, PTAC, at UL Lafayette. According to a budget overview released by the administration, PTAC has, since its inception, “helped Louisiana small businesses obtain $4.5 billion in contracts, creating 19,000 new direct jobs and generating more than $100 million in tax revenue within the state.”
The TOPS scholarship program will also get a funding boost of $34 million. But the administration is proposing hikes in student fees, although Jindal says families could be offered a tax credit to offset the higher fees.
Overall the administration is proposing cutting the state budget by $1.2 billion. Among other recommendations: making a dozen refundable tax credits non-refundable for a savings of $526 million and saving $415 million by cuts to state departments’ operating budgets.
Read more here.