WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - As part of an ongoing effort to make an education at Purdue more affordable, university officials are cutting fees for meal plans and co-op programs.
In Thursday's Purdue Board of Trustees committee meetings, it was announced that President Mitch Daniels wants to cut the fees for meal plans by 5 percent.
"We have fairly high costs compared to similar schools. It's all a part of the affordability equation," said Daniels.
After an outcry from students about the cooperative program fee of more than $900, Daniels also wants to reduce that fee by $514.
"We were charging several hundred dollars more than other similar programs elsewhere. We want to encourage students to have this work experience," said Daniels.
The Finance Committee approved the cuts Thursday.
Daniels said the reductions in fees go hand-in-hand with the tuition freeze that's expected to cost the University $40 million over the next two years.
With the recent pay restraints and other moves, Daniels said the University has already found about $30 million. The Board of Trustees will have a public hearing on May 22 for people to voice their opinions about the proposed tuition and student fees for the next two years.
"The feedback has just been tremendous in what that means for the families of our students and the freeze in the tuition," Keith Krach, Board of Trustees Chairman.
Following the hearing, trustees will take a final vote on the $1.24 billion general fund budget for the 2014 fiscal year. That budget was drafted after the state approved its two-year spending plan. More than $244 million was appropriated to Purdue. Daniels said he will not be touching that to make up for the tuition freeze.
Daniels will most likely be taken out of a retirement plan structured for presidents. Trustees are expected to vote Friday morning to bring him into the standard retirement plan used by employees.
Trustees will also vote to put some non-exempt employees, who have been recently hired, in a defined contribution retirement and savings plan. The move is expected to save Purdue more than $2 million annually by the plan's fourth year.
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