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State budgets getting tighter in 2008

December 10, 2007

A survey released by the National Governors Association found that states are facing much tighter budgets in the coming year than they did during 2007. This could make it more difficult for higher education institutions around the country to request increased state investment in their budgets. It is more likely that, rather than negotiating increases, institutions will have to fight back budget cuts at many state capitols to simply maintain the status quo. This problem will be compounded by the rising costs of Medicaid and health-care costs facing state legislatures in 2008.

Already, the State of Wisconsin cut its higher education line item to address a $116.5 million dollar deficit facing the state in FY2008. The legislators ended up cutting the University of Wisconsin by $12.5 million alone.

The survey also said that in 2007 states spent 10.4 percent of their budget on higher education on average. But it looks like 2008 will see a decline in state support for higher education.

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