We are lobbying for higher education funding in the form of a reduction of Governor Bevin’s proposed budget cuts (4.5% and 9%) as well as a replenishment of lottery funds. The former is self-explanatory, as we need to emphasize how a total 13.5% budget cut will significantly harm our university.
The second topic is more technical. The lottery typically generates approximately $300 million each year, but about $30 of the $300 million in funding has been drained from money that should be going to need-based grants/scholarships for students. Instead, it is being diverted to the General Fund to pay for the rest of Kentucky’s economic woes (KEES money is financed fully every year, so it is not depleted). This is a massive issue that is affecting around 15,000 students in need per year.
Obviously, there are many other problems with state funding for higher education; however, it seems that the Student Government Association’s most beneficial route is to focus on lottery funding. Our plan is to be in unison with other students across the state. Let’s show these legislators that we pay attention to what happens to our funding.
Western Kentucky University’s Student Government Association speaks on behalf of all students when we say we need our need-based grant/scholarship funding back.
Photo taken from Scott Beale / Laughing Squid laughingsquid.com.