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The Oregonian: New, smaller tuition increases approved for Oregon universities
Author: Betsy Hammond, The Oregonian
Posted: July 12, 2013

Read the original story here in The Oregonian. 

Students at Portland State, Oregon State, the University of Oregon and the four other public universities will pay about $100 less in tuition next year after the state higher ed board approved new rates this morning.

"This is a great thing for students," said PSU Provost Sona Andrews.

In its final day this week, the 2013 Legislature allocated $15 million for the universities to reduce their approved tuition increases of about 5 percent down to 3.4 percent.

The Oregon Board of Higher Education decided the specifics Friday morning, shaving about $100 off most of the 2013-14 in-state tuition rates it set last month. But universities that had been slated for the biggest tuition increases, including Oregon State, got bigger reductions than universities that had scrimped on their budgets and asked for smaller tuition increases.

Portland State University, for example, will now charge students $6,615 in tuition in the coming year, down just $63 from the rate the board approved last month. Oregon Tech, by contrast, got its tuition lowered $170, to $7,079.

Andrews, the PSU provost, noted that universities that had "done a responsible job" of paring their spending got less help from the legislature under the board's approach. She said she hopes the tuition-reducing millions will be parceled out differently next year.

Here are the originally approved and revised in-state tuition rates for each university:

UO: Was $8,370, reduced to $8,280
Oregon State: Was $7,056, reduced to $6,876
PSU: Was $6,678, reduced to $6,615
Oregon Tech: Was $7,247, reduced to $7,079
Southern: Was $6,505, reduced to $6,399
Eastern: Was $6,210, reduced to $6,120.

Western Oregon University's tuition is more complicated because students have two options: They can sign up for what is known as the Western Promise, which offers them a tuition rate that remains the same for all four years of their undergraduate education or they can opt for a regular base tuition.

Students who opted promise won't see any increase in their tuition. Freshmen entering the promise program this fall will pay 5.7 percent more than those who entered the program last year. Students also will have the option to pay a base rate that is 3.4 percent higher than last year's entering rate. University officials project the average rate paid by in-state undergraduates in the coming year will be $6,765.

-- Betsy Hammond