John McCarroll, University Relations, (515) 294-6136
JISCHKE PRAISES NEW BUDGET'S IMPACT ON EDUCATION'S FUTURE
AMES, Iowa -- The new state budget reflects the high priority Iowans place on higher education, said Iowa State University President Martin C. Jischke.
Gov. Terry Branstad and the Iowa Legislature deserve "high marks" for a budget that continues to invest in higher education at Iowa State, he added.
"We're very appreciative of their confidence and support, and will see that they get an excellent return on their investment," said Jischke.
In a year of tax cuts, the Iowa legislature invested $42 million in new funds in Iowa State, said Carol Bradley, ISU director of governmental relations.
"In many other states, when you cut taxes, you cut higher education," Bradley said. "While Iowa lawmakers believe that cutting taxes will stimulate the economy, they also feel that increasing the investment in Iowa State is important to the state's future," she added.
New legislative funding to Iowa State for FY98 includes nearly $21 million for construction on the Engineering Teaching and Research Facility and more than $9 million for livestock research facilities.
In addition, lawmakers have appropriated approximately $10 million in salary increases to Iowa State, which is expected to fund average pay hikes of 4 percent for faculty and professional and scientific staff. Another $2.3 million in program operating increases will fund the "reengineering" of engineering education, library acquisitions, tuition assistance and scholarships for graduate students, building repairs, information technology improvements and other projects.
Following are selected highlights of Iowa State's FY98 budget, which will be submitted to the State Board of Regents for final approval in July.
ETRC and reengineering education
The legislature appropriated $20.9 million for phase 2 construction of the Engineering Teaching and Research Facility and $1 million for reengineering engineering education, a project that will involve new learning methods, coop and internship programs for all students, and business and college partnerships.
"The funds reflect support for creating the most skillful workforce we can have in our state, Bradley said. "Engineers are essential to the small to medium-sized manufacturing firms that have become such an important part of the Iowa economy."
Undergraduate education and scholarships
Improving undergraduate education is the top goal of ISU's strategic plan and 45 percent ($6 million) of new or internally reallocated funds will go to initiatives aimed at achieving that goal. Half of those funds (about $3 million) are for student aid.
Approximately $475,000 in additional funding was earmarked for library acquisitions. The funds will buy materials and periodicals in critical collections.
Intensive livestock research facility
Lawmakers designated $9.27 million for livestock research facilities at the College of Veterinary Medicine. Most of the funds will go for construction of a livestock infectious disease isolation facility, where researchers will study animal diseases important to the livestock industry in Iowa.
Livestock production and the environment
State lawmakers renewed a $400,000 appropriation for Iowa State research and demonstration projects involving odor control in livestock production. Lawmakers already had provided a "one-time" $400,000 appropriation for the current year.
In addition, a new one-time appropriation of $200,000 will fund ISU research on sites with earthen waste storage structures.
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