Thursday, July 13, 2017

Higher ed takes biggest WV budget hit, but how much is too much? - Brad McElhinny, WV Metro News

When West Virginia, up against budget struggles, reduced funding to its higher education system by $16 million for the coming fiscal year, it was far from the first state to do so. “The quick overview is that higher education is sometimes referred to as the balancing wheel in state budgets in that it is the largest single program in state budgets that is not formula driven,” said Arturo Perez, fiscal affairs program director for the National Conference of State Legislatures. “When things get tight in state budgets, whether it’s a recession or a fiscal situation, higher education tends to be the first to go to in terms of making reductions in spending. When states find themselves on the recovery side it often is the program that finds an acceleration in spending.”

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