Sharp tuition hikes sought at ASU, UA, NAU

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PHOENIX (AP) -- The presidents of Arizona's three public universities are proposing sharp increases in tuition this fall for new students to offset funding cuts and the uncertain economy.

The presidents of Arizona State University, the University of Arizona and Northern Arizona University also are recommending an "economic recovery surcharge" that added several hundred dollars onto existing tuition bills remain in place again next year.

According to proposals released Friday, tuition for new students at ASU would increase by $1,286 a year, bringing annual tuition and fees to $7,793. Current students would see their tuition increase by 5 percent, which would mean an extra charge ranging from $770 to $871, depending on the year they started.

At UA, tuition would rise by $1,450, to $7,224 a year. In addition, proposed new fee increases would total $680, including a new campus sustainability fee of $24, a health and recreation fee of $306, a $335 increase to the library fee and $15 increase in financial-aid fee.

NAU students would pay $337 more in tuition to $6,964 a year. Incoming students would have their tuition frozen at that level for the next eight semesters, though fees could increase in future years.

ASU and UA currently charge about $6,840 a year, although students who were enrolled at ASU prior to last fall pay a few hundred dollars less. NAU now charges $6,627 a year for new students.

The tuition proposals still need the approval from the Arizona Board of Regents, which oversees the three state universities. Public hearings are scheduled March 1 at several campus locations and the board is scheduled to vote March 11.

Last year, the universities saw a $190 million, or 20 percent, cut in their state funding.

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Information from: The Arizona Republic, http://www.azcentral.com

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