Home > Uncategorized > Higher education should remain top priority

Higher education should remain top priority

The drastic Texas deficit estimated to be somewhere between $15 and $30 billion has legislators looking to cut funding for higher education and it’s a move that could potentially harm the future of the Texas economy.

If legislators truly want to cut down this deficit, cutting funding is not the way to go about it.  The only result of that will be fewer students in colleges, less graduates earning degrees and ultimately less of the Texas public in the work force.  Meaning the Texas economy will suffer from it.  Less people with jobs equal less spending to circulate the Texas economy.

The easy solution would be to raise tuition to supplement the loss of state funding, but raising tuition is the equivalent of less state funding.  The problem is students are finding it tougher to pay for their college education.  Federal grants and financial aid has been declining and further impacts will happen to students in need of financial help.

The question then becomes, how do legislators avoid cutting funding to higher education, while at the same time making the necessary budget cuts?

Governor Rick Perry does have an ace up his sleeve in the form of the Rainy-Day Fund, which is ripped and ready to be devoured given the current economic status of the state’s budget crisis.

As it stands the Rainy-Day Fund, or as it’s better known, the Economic Stabilization Fund, is estimated to be about $9.4 billion.

There is no dire need to spend the entire fund, but simply half or at the very least one-fourth of it, roughly $2.35 billion.  This will ensure that higher education continues to progress and be able to compete on a national level.  If only Governor Rick Perry would see it that way.

Perry has publicly stated that Texas must protect the Rainy-Day Fund.

 

His reasoning is the fund should be used to handle bigger emergencies.  I guess cutting out higher education is not a big emergency to our governor.  And if the governor has enough support behind him, the Rainy Day fund will not see the light of day anytime soon.

Which leaves funding for higher education on the cutting table and on the way out.

 

 

 

 

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