Government Relations

UM Legislative Update Newsletter

June 29, 2007

Higher education leaders begin to consider funding formula ideas for public institutions

The Department of Higher Education has formed a Higher Education Funding Formula (HEFF) Task Force to focus on the way in which public funds for operation of Missouri’s public higher education institutions are allocated. The task force includes representatives from the public two- and four-year institutions, staff from the Senate and House as well as the governor’s office, and DHE officials. The group is working with Brenda Albright, a national higher education finance consultant, who presented preliminary comments at the CBHE’s June meeting in Springfield. The task force plans to complete its work over the next year in preparation for the Fiscal Year 2010 budget request. The University of Missouri is represented on the task force by Stephen Lehmkuhle, senior vice president for academic affairs.

The Council on Public Higher Education (COPHE), which represents the state’s public four-year institutions, has formed its own working group to review funding formulas in other states and develop input for the statewide task force. This group, which includes a representative from each public institution’s fiscal affairs department, is chaired by Larry Gates, UM associate vice president for finance and administration. The COPHE group plans to have its report completed and recommendations provided to the DHE by this October.

University of Missouri leaders have emphasized that any new funding formula for the state must reflect the unique mission of UM as the state’s public research and land-grant institution that trains a majority of professional workers. Graduate and professional education is more costly per student to deliver than undergraduate education, and any new formula must compensate for that cost.

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