Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker says the state shouldn’t have to subsidize the reciprocity agreement that allows both Wisconsin and Minnesota students pay instate tuition even if they study in the others’ states.
The University of Minnesota is $3,000-per-year more expensive than the the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and he says taxpayers shouldn’t be picking up that extra expense.
So it looks like he wants to charge Wisconsin students the difference.
This from the Associated Press:
MADISON, Wis. — Wisconsin college students would have to
pay more to attend the University of Minnesota under a proposal
backed by Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker.
Walker is asking the Legislature’s Joint Finance Committee to
approve a change to the two states’ 43-year-old tuition reciprocity
program that would save Wisconsin money by making students who go
to Minnesota pay more.
The reciprocity program allows Wisconsin and Minnesota
college-bound students to pay instate tuition even if they attend
public universities in the other state. This year it costs about
$3,000 more in tuition and fees to attend the University of
Minnesota than it does to go to the University of
Wisconsin-Madison. Under the deal, the state of Wisconsin makes up
the difference for students who decide to go to Minnesota.
That subsidy would end under Walker’s proposal, which means
Wisconsin students would have to pay all of the higher Minnesota
“We don’t think taxpayers should pay more to send Wisconsin
students to an out-of-state college than they would for an in-state
college,” said Walker spokesman Cullen Werwie.
The agreement to end the deal was reached earlier this year by
Wisconsin’s Higher Educational Aids Board, which runs the program,
and the state of Minnesota. A spokeswoman for the Minnesota Higher
Education Services Office had no immediate comment.
“Administratively it is a nightmare to keep track of all the
students and come up with the additional tuition they owe,” said
the Wisconsin board’s interim administrator Sherrie Nelson, at a
Thursday budget briefing before the Joint Finance Committee. She
said given the cost of the program, the state felt it was best to
“take the burden off the state” and have the students pick up the
Walker estimated the state would save $12 million a year by
eliminating the subsidy, but Nelson said the savings would actually
be closer to $4 million. About 10,600 Wisconsin students
participated in the program this year, with the majority of them
attending the University of Minnesota, Nelson said.