Texas system regents decide not to raise tuition

AUSTIN (AP) — In-state tuition and fees will remain the same in the next school year for University of Texas System students, despite concerns from school presidents that they need more money or risk losing top faculty to competitors.

The system Board of Regents voted Tuesday to maintain current prices and to keep looking for other ways to help schools meet rising costs. The board directed Chancellor Francisco Cigarroa to bring ideas to the board at its August meeting.

The system’s nine academic campuses had proposed some tuition hikes for coming year. The plan would have pushed semester costs at the flagship Austin campus above $5,000 for the first time.

The board postponed a vote last week after Gov. Rick Perry, who has fought to keep tuition low and clashed with Austin campus President Bill Powers, urged the board not to raise in-state tuition. The board is appointed by Perry.

Board Chairman Paul Foster said regents don’t want to pass costs on to students.

The board did approve tuition hikes last week for out-of-state students and on Tuesday approved the new four-year guaranteed tuition plan option. That plan allows students to enter college at a higher price with a guaranteed they will pay the same rate for four years.

The board on Tuesday also formally named former University of Alabama and Texas Tech University president Guy Bailey as president of the new University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, which is set to hold its first classes in fall 2015.

Foster also said he will no longer call for the resignation of board member Wallace Hall, who is facing legislative and criminal investigations over his efforts the last two years to try to force Powers out of the Austin campus.

Hall is accused of improperly launching a one-man investigation against Powers and inundating the UT system in open records requests. A House panel already has found grounds exist to impeach Hall and meets again Wednesday to consider formal charges that could lead to his removal.

Foster last week publicly urged Hall to resign, but Hall said he will not.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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