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Ruiz, Cunningham Bill to Require that State Colleges Post Annual Budgets Advances

TRENTON – Legislation sponsored by Senate Education Chair M. Teresa Ruiz, and Senate Higher Education Chair Sandra Cunningham would require public universities to post their annual budget online cleared the Senate Higher Education Committee today.

“The most important investment someone can make in their future is to get a college education,” said Senator Ruiz (D-Essex). “With the rising cost of tuition it is important we continue to promote transparency and accountability. Posting budgets online, will allow prospective students, and the public as a whole to make more informed decisions as to where to invest their time and money.”

“Considering the expenses of attending college and weighing the burden of student debt, many young people now rethink the whole idea of continuing their education,” said Senator Cunningham (D-Hudson).  “Being able to go to a website and see in plain English how their tuition dollars would be spent – and then comparing their options – will give them a clear idea of the value of their investment.  This bill will make the selection process easier and should result in more students feeling confident about their choice to continue their education.”

The bill, S-1834, would require each public college to post its budget for the upcoming academic year online by August 15. The college would be required to post a user-friendly outline of the institution’s major sources of revenue and major categories of expenditures. The outline would have to be posted on the college’s public site in a prominent and easily accessible location.

The bill passed committee by a vote of 3-0, and next heads to the full Senate for further consideration.