No go on tuition bill Senate panel not persuaded, kills tuition cap bill

With revenues improving, a bipartisan group of lawmakers led by Kerr last session won a $100 million increase in higher education funding – along with a 6 percent cap on increases for the 2014-15 and 2015-16 budget years.

Gov. John Hickenlooper is proposing a similar bump for higher education in the next budget year, but there are widespread concerns those sorts of increases won’t continue for long.

Citing other future demands on the state budget, Department of Higher Education lobbyist Kachina Weaver told the committee, “It’s extremely unlikely that we’re going to continue those kinds of funding levels” in the future.

Given that, committee Republicans were reluctant to limit colleges’ options to respond to variations in state support. “It seems to me we need to give some flexibility to higher education,” said Sen. Owen Hill, R-Colorado Springs and chair of the committee.