Republicans in the Iowa House have voted to try to change the terms of a deal that would freeze in-state tuition for students at Iowa, Iowa State and U-N-I this fall. Senator Brian Schoenjahn, a Democrat from Arlington, is asking Republican Governor Terry Branstad to intervene.
The board that governs the three state universities has offered to freeze tuition for the second year in a row if legislators provide a four percent budget boost for each of the schools, as well as an additional four-point-four million dollars for the University of Northern Iowa. Governor Terry Branstad has signed onto that deal and Senate Democrats have as well, but House Republicans voted to scoop into the University of Iowa’s allotment to provide the extra money to U-N-I, putting Iowa’s budget boost at two percent rather than the four percent going to the other two institutions. Representative Cecil Dolecheck (DOLE-uh-check), a Republican from Mount Ayr (like the word “air”), says the U-of-I is sitting on a “tremendous” cash reserve.