There may be some extra money in South Carolina’s budget next year, but it will be up to state lawmakers to decide where and how to spend it.
According to The State newspaper, there could be an extra $446 million to spend in the state budget. However, the state’s universities are asking for more than $750 million as part of their ‘wish list’ of projects.
The article reports state colleges are not the only ones with their hands out. The additional money is being sought this year to help public schools in rural and poor districts, pay for for the state’s roads and bridges or its underfunded pension system. And that’s not including $64 million the state needs to pay for damage from Hurricane Matthew.
Every state-owned university and college — along with the state’s 16 technical colleges — have their own request for a specific amount from next year’s state budget. But due to their large asks and the state budget’s relatively small increase, each school will only get a part of what they are asking for from lawmakers.
State spending on higher education has taken a hit since the Great Recession.