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Students March for Education Money

March 3rd, 2009 by flanews

Hundreds of FAMU and FSU students marched to the state Capitol today, telling lawmakers to keep higher education off the chopping block. Students say their schools are suffering from recent budget cuts. As Whitney Ray tells us, lawmakers would have to raise tuition, and possibly raise taxes to satisfy the students demands.

Hear it Here: Students March for Education Money

A crowd of angry sign-toting college students flooded the state capitol Tuesday with a message for the Governor.

Charlie Crist, we are pissed, the crowd chanted.

The students are demanding more money for their schools, arguing that theyre losing professors and its already hard to get the classes needed to graduate.

A lot of times you have to wait two or three semesters to get the right class because they cant offer them, said Keath White, an FSU Senior.

After two straight years of budget cuts, a tuition increase may be at least part of the answer to the funding question. Lawmakers will consider giving universities the ability to raise tuition 15 percent a year.

Even if lawmakers give universities the go ahead to raise tuition, administrators say it wouldnt be enough to keep their schools funded.

House Democrats laid out their plans for saving schools, which include lifting the tax exemption on bottled water, and adding a temporary one cent sales tax.

A folk singer supported the students efforts with music, but back in the Capitol, House Leadership was singing a different tune.

I dont like tax increases, said House Speaker Larry Cretul.

By the time session is over, Federal stimulus dollars may be the lifesaver used to keep higher education afloat. Florida is still waiting on word from Washington on 3.4 billion federal stimulus dollars earmarked for education. The money is being held in limbo as punishment for deep cuts to education.

Posted in Charlie Crist, Education, State Budget, State News, Taxes | No Comments »

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