Public hearing addresses tuition and fee increases for 2020
Hannah Mabry- Managing Editor
Tarleton invited students to a public hearing about the tuition and fees for the fall 2020 and spring 2021 semesters at the Student Government Association (SGA) meeting on Wednesday. Associate Vice President of Finance and Administration, Acting Chief Financial Officer and Controller Lori Beaty spoke about the tuition and fee increases.
“There’s not any intention to increase tuition because of a move to Division I,” Beaty said. “This is our regular process that we do every year regardless of what’s happening with athletics.”
Beaty explained that there are two types of increases proposed for fall of 2020. She first spoke about tuition.
“Every year we do an adjustment, what we call an inflation adjustment…Every two years we have the opportunity to request specific increases to meet the needs of the university,” she said.
Under this type of increase, there are two types of tuition plans for first-time students to choose from: variable and guaranteed. The variable rate plan is subject to change on an annual basis in accordance with Higher Education Price Index and other Texas A&M System Board of Regents-approved changes, while the guaranteed rate plan has fixed rates for the duration of a student’s four-year term.
Current students with the guaranteed plan will see no change in their tuition rate. According to Beaty, only 24% of students have chosen the variable tuition plan.
“Starting…next fall, variable tuition increase ranges from 2.9% to 3.7%, depending on what college your courses are in,” Beaty said.
While most colleges will only increase by 2.9%, the College of Liberal and Fine Arts and the College of Education have some equipment needs, thus causing an increase of 3.7% and 3.57%, respectively.
“We have stuck with the inflation adjustment for all students, but (those) two colleges…have unique needs that are not being addressed, and so we have tuition differential increases proposed to help those,” Beaty explained.
The second type of increase proposed for the fall of 2020 is the collegiate athletics fee that students voted on in last week’s referendum. All students will see this increase in their fees next fall. The fee was $22 per credit hour and is now $35 per credit hour.
“All students, whether guaranteed or variable, will see the athletic fee increase,” Beaty said.
During the question and answer time, Austin Sikes, co-vice president of Freshman Representative Council, mentioned the SGA Congressional Bylaws which reads, “If the amount of increase is less than 5% increase, the tuition board asks SGA’s approval. This is done so after presentation and a vote is done to a resolution supporting the tuition increase.”
Beaty wasn’t aware of this bylaw, but assured Sikes that she would do her research and follow up.
“I have a chart that I use that comes from the A&M System that ties all of this back to education code so that may be a little bit different from your bylaws,” Beaty said. “But in the education code, I’m not sure if that’s required.”
For more information about tuition and fees, contact Beaty at firstname.lastname@example.org.