Correction to state budget caps in-state tuition, reinstates Wisconsin Idea

Gov. Scott Walker submitted a series of corrections to his 2015-’17 budget proposal Monday, which includes a cap on resident undergraduate tuition within the UW System and a return of the Wisconsin Idea to the System’s mission statement.

The changes amend a budget that trades $300 million in cuts to the UW System for a public authority model. The System’s Board of Regents approved controversial hikes to out-of-state tuition Friday.

The reinstatement of the language constituting the Wisconsin Idea comes after Walker attributed the removal to a “drafting error” earlier this year.

Although he tepidly commended the renewed spirit of openness between the state Capitol and the System, UW System President Ray Cross criticized the tuition cap for removing an avenue that raises revenue.

“This kind of price control is not compatible with the agile, market driven, and competitive entity the state needs us to be,” Cross said in a Monday statement.

State Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, applauded the cap as a way to rein in the UW’s bloated budget.

“I don’t necessarily have a problem with asking people to be more efficient in how they run their agency,” Vos said.

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