Government Relations

UM Legislative Update Newsletter

January 28, 2005

Gov. Blunt addresses education funding in State of the State address

"I want to commend Gov. Blunt for his support of our public universities and colleges," said University of Missouri President Elson S. Floyd. "Given the funding problems facing most areas of state government, a flat appropriation is good news for public higher education."

"We appreciate Gov. Blunt’s recognition of the important role that higher education plays in Missouri’s economy," Floyd said. "We stand ready to work with the governor and lawmakers to educate a workforce prepared to support Missouri’s future business and industry."

The financing of the state’s multiple responsibilities (corrections, mental health, social services, and education) continues to be problematic. Despite relatively strong revenue growth for next year, a structural problem exists in the budget. The cost of current state programs exceeds annual revenue. Last year the State of Missouri used millions in funds from the federal government and other sources that were "one-time" in nature and would not be available for next year to balance the budget.

During his State of the State address, Gov. Blunt indicated that several departments of state government must be significantly downsized to accommodate anticipated revenues. Confounding the problem, the cost of the state Medicaid program continues to expand.

To see the governor’s recommended FY06 budget or to watch the State of the State address, visit http://gov.missouri.gov/index.htm

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