Community College Budgets Advance: On Wednesday, May 15, the community college budget saw action on both sides of the Capitol with the full Senate approving Senate Bill 134 by a vote of 20 - 18 and the House Appropriations Committee reporting House Bill 4230 along party lines.

Before passing the budget, the Senate adopted a floor substitute that would fully fund Indian Tuition Waivers to reflect changes in student case load that have shifted since that line item was rolled into each college's base funding. Unfortunately, that funding would not be new money but instead would come out of the proposed 1.5% operations increase for colleges that are serving fewer Native American students than they did historically. Senate Bill 134 now goes to the House of Representatives for consideration.

Also on Wednesday, the House Appropriations Committee reported its recommendation for House Bill 4230 , which funds community colleges. The full committee did not make any changes to the subcommittee recommendation to provide a 1% overall increase in operations funding, and to use a modified version of the performance funding formula that would give extra weight to the six colleges with the lowest taxable values. The House recommendation would implement tuition restraint for community colleges at 3.2%. House Bill 4230 now goes to the full House of Representatives for consideration.

Slight Changes to Previous Revenue Estimates: While crafting the upcoming fiscal year budget, the House and Senate will have a slightly increased amount of money to appropriate, according to updated economic estimates. According to Friday's May Revenue Estimating Conference, revenue to the General Fund-General Purpose (GF-GP) is projected at $10.85 billion, up $151.50 million from January estimates. School Aid Fund (SAF) revenue is estimated to be $13.48 billion, down $151.50 million from January estimates. That gives a net increase of $83.30 million to the combined GF-GP and SAF revenue estimates.

Committee Considers Campus Speech: On Thursday morning, May 16, the House Oversight Committee continued testimony on House Bill 4435 & 4436 (Reilly), which would create a new act purporting to protect freedom of speech, expression, and assembly at public institutions of higher education, including community colleges. HB 4436 would require colleges and universities to adopt policies on this topic, would dictate the content of those policies, and would mandate distribution of campus speech policies to all students. The Committee heard from groups that did not have a chance to testify previously, but did not vote on either bill.

Hearing on Sexual Assault Bills: On Tuesday, May 14, the House Judiciary Committee took testimony on a number of bills, some of which stem from the ongoing lessons learned from MSU and Larry Nassar. Of particular note to community colleges are House Bill 4830 (Anthony), which would create a Higher Education Sexual Assault Prevention, Advocacy, and Resource Officer within the Department of Civil Rights, and House Bill 4381 (Hoadley), which would require campus sexual assault response improvement plan and create grants to implement best practices.

 
 

 

HELPFUL LINKS

Michigan Legislature’s website (bill tracking and committee meetings)

Michigan House of Representatives

Michigan Senate

Community College Legal Authority (Michigan Constitution)

Community College Act of 1966

 

For the map of the community college districts, click here.

 

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