Monday, April 21, 2008

Balancing budget means OU room costs are going up

by Brooks Jarosz

For students living on campus, the cost of living is going up. The Board of Trustees met late last week and approved an eight and a half percent hike for residence halls and a separate three percent raise for board. The university is under a tuition freeze. But that doesn't affect other charges. Parent Rudy Stastny, whose daughter is a prospective student, says that the increase doesn't really bother him too much, just as long as his daughter is comfortable.

Parent Rudy Stastny talks about the cost of housing as part of the overall college cost for his daughter.

Balanced Budget

The budget was also a major topic. The OU Vice president for Finance and Administration, Bill Decatur said, "We are still in the middle of planning, we have not proposed a budget to the board for approval. We will bring a balanced budget to the board in June." Currently OU is projecting a $1.35 million shortfall. Trustees talked about cutbacks, but decided not to delay pay raises for university faculty and staff. The rising cost of materials is increasing other charges too. Laboratory fees are going up for several departments. The cost of aviation gas is increasing flight school fees. The university is waiting to see what kind of funding it gets from the state to see whether everything balances.

OU VP for Finance William Decatur says residence halls need renovation

Vision Ohio

Vision Ohio, a ten year strategic plan, aims to improve the university's enrollment, recruitment and retention rate. A three percent faculty and staff pay increase is part of year one of that plan, which starts next year.

Ohio University President Roderick McDavis says the university is on track with the Vision Ohio plan

New Health Center?

The board also moved ahead with plans to build a new campus health center. A proposed location includes the corner of Richland Avenue and South Shafer Street. The center would cost about $20 million. It would replace the current Hudson Health Center.

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