Miss. universities seek stimulus funds restoration

Higher Education Commissioner Hank Bounds says Mississippi’s universities have shaved $91 million from operating expenses, but will still need more state money next fiscal year.

The spending proposal presented to the Joint Legislative Budget Committee on Tuesday seeks state money to replace $66 million in federal stimulus funds that will be lost after this year.

In all, the system has asked for nearly $96 million in additional state funding for the year that begins next July 1.

Bounds said tuition increases brought in an additional $28.2 million last year. He said the $91 million in cost-savings came through various measures, including cutting positions, eliminating programs and combining some campuses’ office operations.