Operating budget remains unsettled for upcoming year

By Kevin Graham

Oakland University is not among 11 of Michigan’s 15 public universities that have set their tuition rates for the next year.

Any proposed budget, including the operating budget which sets tuition rates, requires the approval of the Board of Trustees.

The operating budget also sets the amount of money allocated to different colleges and the amount received by various university departments.

The Board canceled its June 11 meeting and rescheduled it for Aug. 6 at 2 p.m.

OU’s tuition rate is largely based on the amount of support it receives from the state of Michigan. OU’s state aid increase was 2.06 percent, which is less than the state average of 3.5 percent.

Director of Media Relations Ted Montgomery said the state’s allocation formula included some new performance-based measures that Oakland is working hard to meet.

Performance funding is based upon degrees in critical skill areas such as technology, science and math.

Within the state’s blueprint in House of Representatives Bill 5372, Oakland received more than $378,000 for the number of undergraduate degrees completed in critical skill areas. An additional $489,419 was given based on the total number of degrees and completions.

State Relations Director Michelle Lange said Oakland works extensively with other state universities to gain further funding for higher education.

“As the budget is the one item the legislature is constitutionally required to complete each and every year by the end of the fiscal year, we work closely with members of the Michigan Senate and House of Representatives, as well as the executive office, to inform them on the importance of increasing funding for higher education and Oakland University in particular,” Lange said.

Contact Senior Reporter Kevin Graham via email at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @KevinGraham88