Higher Education

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Budget writers in the Missouri House have approved their version of the 13 bills that make up the states budget for next year. Committee members eliminated $28 million for a program that aids the blind, but then put $6 million back into it from another source. Ryan Silvey (R, Kansas City) chairs the Budget Committee.

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Central Missouri teen sentenced to life with possibility of parole Eighteen-year-old Alyssa Bustamante has been sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole in the killing of her 9-year-old neighbor. The Central Missouri teen was sentenced this morning in Cole County Circuit Court. She pleaded guilty in January to second-degree murder and armed criminal action in the October 2009 stabbing and strangling of her neighbor, Elizabeth Olten, in St. Martins, a small town west of...

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

In the wake of a possible approximately 12.5 percent cut in higher education funding for fiscal year 2013, and ongoing discussion of tuition hikes and job cuts across the University of Missouri system in response, Missouri Governor Jay Nixon has announced an amendment to his budget which would restore $40 million to public colleges and universities in the state. The original 12.5 percent cut amounts to approximately $106 million. So, where will the restored funding come from? A statement from...

(via Flickr/Adam Procter)

Governor Jay Nixon (D) is warning Missouris college administrators not to raise tuition to make up the difference in budget cuts he announced this week during his annual State of the State Address. The governor wants to cut the states Higher Education budget by nearly $106 million, or 12.5 percent. During his address Tuesday he indicated that he wants universities to leave tuition levels where they are.

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Reporting by WILL s Sean Powers was used in this story. The trustees of the University of Illinois system have approved a 4.8 percent tuition hike for incoming freshmen at the systems three campuses. The vote today means incoming freshmen will pay $532 more a year at the main campus in Champaign-Urbana, $468 more in Chicago, and $420 more in Springfield. University of Illinois system schools are required to keep the tuition of incoming freshmen state residents the same for four years, and the...

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Ill. unpaid bills top $4.2 billion in Comptrollers office Illinois Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka says there are even more bills piled up in other government departments. She said Wednesday the states overall backlog is about $8.5 billion. That means organizations that provide services for the state, from businesses to hospitals to charity groups, must wait months to be paid for their work. Topinkas office is still paying bills that date back to Sept. 1 - four and a half months ago. Illinois...

Adam Procter | flickr

Missouris legislative budget leaders may not go along with Gov. Jay Nixons proposed cuts to public colleges and universities. Nixon has proposed a 12.5 percent reduction to higher education institutions for the next academic year. Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Kurt Schaefer said Wednesday he does not intend to follow Nixons recommendation. The Columbia Republican says the cut would be a huge blow to higher education. House Appropriations Committee Chairman Ryan Silvey - a...

(via Flickr/Adam Procter)

A task force is recommending that funding for universities and community colleges in Missouri be based in part on graduation rates and other performance-based criteria. The recommendation was presented today in Jefferson City to the states Coordinating Board for Higher Education . State Senator David Pearce (R, Warrensburg) chairs the Senate Education Committee.

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Mo. state auditor Tom Schweich says contracts between five state universities and former presidents may not be in the best interest of the schools, and some may violate provisions of state law. Schweich, a Republican, reviewed the contracts for the four chancellors of the University of Missouri system and the states nine other four-year public institutions. While the report found that most of the contracts were reasonable, some did not adequately protect the university and contained...

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Faculty at Southern Illinois Universitys flagship campus in Carbondale will be voting later this month on whether to go on strike as part of a lingering contract dispute. The Southern Illinoisan reports that the group representing tenured and tenure-track faculty at the 20,000-student school voted unanimously Thursday to seek a strike-authorization vote. That means the entire membership will vote Sept. 28 on whether a walkout is in order. A representative of the group says the union began...

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Governor Jay Nixon (D) wants to move Missouris universities and community colleges back to a performance-based funding model. It would mark a return to the way business was once conducted. Graduation rates and similar markers were used as a basis for funding public colleges in Missouri, but the system was dumped a decade ago during an economic recession.

The Missouri Senate has passed the state budget for next year. The Senates $23.2 billion spending plan cuts the states higher education budget by 4.8 percent, and provides an additional $20 million for school bus funding. Kurt Schaefer (R, Columbia) sponsored the budget bills in the Senate.

Several local gun stores are reporting an increased demand for tactical weapons and training.
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A judge has issued a temporary restraining order to prevent the Illinois State Police from releasing the names of registered gun owners in the state - something the agency doesnt want to do anyway . The order was handed down Friday in Peoria. It is the latest chapter in a battle between the states attorney general and police force over the release of names of the states Firearm Owners Identification cardholders. Last week, responding to a Freedom of Information request from The Associated...

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