ENMU raising tuition, fees next year

By Argen Duncan: PNT senior writer

The Eastern New Mexico University Board of Regents voted Tuesday to increase tuition and fees at all three of its campuses next year.

Regents Randy Harris, Chad Lydick, Marshall Stinnett and Pauline Ponce voted Tuesday for the increases.

Student Regent Robert Wachter voted against them.

Tuition and fees at the main Portales campus will rise 9.8 percent, or $174 per semester, for undergraduates from New Mexico. Tuition and fees for out-of-state undergraduates will also rise to $174 per semester, an increase is 3.83 percent.

Tuition and fees for graduate students will increase $186 per semester for in-state (9.39 percent) and out-of-state students (3.92 percent).

“Our percentage increase appears it’s going to be the highest (among four-year universities in the state), but our dollar amount is going to be the third lowest,” said Scott Smart, vice president for business affairs.

A little more than half of the additional money generated will be sent back to the state, he said. The rest goes to balance the university’s budget.

Gamble said with the increases, ENMU would also have the third-lowest tuition and fees among the 79 four-year universities in the Southwest.

At the Ruidoso campus, tuition went up 8.8 percent, all of which will go back to the state, said ENMU-Ruidoso President Clayton Alred.

For the Roswell campus, tuition increased by 9 percent. ENMU-R Vice President of Business Affairs Eric Johnston-Ortiz said the increase offset the 9-percent tuition credit required by the Legislature for two-year colleges.

A tuition credit requires universities to raise their tuition in order to balance their budgets.

In other business Tuesday, the ENMU Board of Regents:

• Approved adjusted course fees. Vice President of Academic Affairs Jamie Laurenz said most adjustment requests were to increase a fee or add a new fee, but some were to decrease or remove a fee.
Student Regent Robert Wachter voted against the measure. Regents Randy Harris, Chad Lydick, Pauline Ponce and Marshall Stinnett voted in favor.

• Voted to increase room and board rates for the next academic year. Wachter was again the only regent opposing the measure.
Meal plan costs increased by 3.2 percent.

Traditional residence hall rates went up 6 percent. Haislett said the increase was as small as ENMU could have and still pay bills.

On-campus apartment rates increases varied from 2 percent in San Juan Village to 9 percent for West Campus Housing. Vice President for Student Affairs Judith Haislett said she didn’t want to take the San Juan Village prices out of the normal rate of private Portales rentals, and West Campus Housing was being refurbished and getting wireless Internet.

• Approved the Portales campus operating budget of about $72.7 million for the next fiscal year. Total revenue was projected to be $650,000 less than this fiscal year.

• Approved an increase in the one-time registration fee for transfer students. Wachter voted no on the measure, and the other regents supported.
The fee went up from $25 to $60 for transfer students taking seven or more credit hours and to $35 for those taking six hours or less. Vice President for University Relations and Enrollment Services Ronnie Birdsong said the increase will pay for additional services.

• Heard from architect Mike Hill on the design for a planned Technology Building. He said it would be 30,000 square feet, plus an option to build a 1,000-square-foot lecture hall.
The project is expect to cost about $9 million. Hill said hopes construction will start this summer to finish for the fall 2011 semester.

• Approved a $1 million replacement of the Greyhound Arena evaporative cooling system. Smart said he hoped work would start this fall.

• Approved distribution of almost $1.6 million in student fees for next school year. Student Senate President Elect Brittany Chrisman said athletics and Associated Students of ENMU received larger allotments. Haislett said tutoring and the Graduate Student Association are receiving money through other sources in the coming year.

• Approved a one-year ENMU-Ruidoso lease of the land near the Spencer Theater in Alto. Leaders hope to later establish a long-term agreement, leading to the university acquiring the property.