FRANKFORT, Ky. — At its meeting, the Council on Postsecondary Education took actions to address financial instability at Kentucky State University as specified in HB 250, enacted earlier this month.
Topping the list was the approval of Kentucky State University’s request for a disbursement of $17.5 million to address the current year’s budget shortfall through June 15.
Before the June Council meeting, CPE staff will work with KSU staff and its board of regents to develop a final funding request for FY 2022. The time will be used to determine final payroll amounts, evaluate cash flow needs for the transition from FY 2022 to 2023 and year-end closeout expenses.
The Council also approved an expenditure approval policy for KSU that sets the process for approving KSU expenditures in accordance with the legislation. HB 250 states CPE approval is required for any expenditure greater than $5,000 and requires the university to provide a monthly report of finances to CPE, which will provide a monthly update on the financial status of the university to the governor and the Legislative Research Commission.
In other action, the Council approved two new academic programs at the University of Louisville and one at Western Kentucky University.
For the University of Louisville, the Council approved an Education Specialist in Curriculum and Instructions degree, a 30-credit hour program designed to prepare classroom teachers to become curriculum and instruction specialists in a particular area of teaching, such as reading. The target populations for the program are teachers in Jefferson County Public Schools and the Ohio Valley Educational Cooperative school districts.
The second program, a 34-credit hour Master of Science in Accountancy and Analytics, aligns with the needs for accounting and business analytics talent in the region and will replace the current Master of Accountancy degree program.
A Master of Science in Cybersecurity Data Analytics was approved for Western Kentucky University. The 30-credit hour program will combine cybersecurity and data analytics to provide students with the skills to prevent and detect cybersecurity attacks.
In finance action, the Council approved the tuition and mandatory fee policy for the upcoming academic year, with no changes from last year’s policy. The tuition parameters adopted last year for a two-year period limit public university base rate increases for undergraduate students to 3% over two years, though increases are limited to 2% in any one year. The increase for KCTCS institutions was limited to $5 per credit hour over the two-year period, while the increase in any one year was limited to $2 per credit hour.
In compliance with the policy, the Council approved a 2% increase in undergraduate resident tuition for Northern Kentucky University for the coming year and a $3 per credit hour increase, or 1.7%, for KCTCS.
The Council also approved a $1.15 million federally funded interim capital project at Eastern Kentucky University to upgrade building management system controls, replacing an aging system with a security-compliant operating system. The new project will improve building system reliability, indoor ventilation and air quality.
A resolution thanking resigning council member Ronald Beal for his service was passed by the Council.
The Council heard reports from CPE President Aaron Thompson and KDE Commissioner Jason Glass, a legislative session update from CPE’s Jennifer Fraker and Travis Powell, and a report on the Higher Education Matters Campaign from Sue Patrick, CPE, Terri Giltner, KCTCS, and Rick Hesterberg, Morehead State University.
The next meeting of the Council will be held June 16-17 at CPE’s offices in Frankfort.
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