Brittany Alana Davis
Director of Communications
PRESS RELEASE: Governor Scott signs State University System budget
TALLAHASSEE—Governor Rick Scott today signed a budget that includes a significant increase in funding for higher education— including $200 million for performance funding and strategic investments in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) facilities.
Governor Scott said, “Our ‘It’s Your Money Tax Cut’ budget is the largest state education investment in history—it champions $3.7 billion in operating funds for the public universities, including $200 million for performance funding and invests funds for new buildings at Florida universities. I want Florida’s public universities to be among the best in the nation, and this historic funding will help make that goal a reality.”
The investment in performance funding marks the first time such a significant portion of state university funding has been directed toward rewarding excellence and improvement, signifying a reinvigorated commitment to higher levels of accountability and performance. The Board of Governors will allocate the funds based on its 10-metric performance funding model, which rewards university performance in areas from graduation and retention rates to cost per student. The state is investing $100 million in the initiative, which universities are matching with an equal amount of existing dollars, known as base funding.
“Our Governor and Legislature understand the importance of investing strategically in our universities and students,” said Board of Governors Chair Mori Hosseini. “Through performance funding and capital investments, our elected leaders are ensuring that today’s students have the opportunity to succeed in tomorrow’s workforce.”
“This is a landmark day for our State University System,” said Board of Governors Vice Chair Tom Kuntz. “With the support of Governor Scott, the State University System can now implement its plan to raise all of our universities to a new level of efficiency, accountability and academic quality.”
The budget was also notable in other ways, directing more than $256 million for maintenance and to build primarily classrooms, laboratories and learning spaces designed to ensure students are competitive in today’s workforce. Investments include$20 million for the chemistry/chemical biology building at the University of Florida and $15 million for the University of South Florida Heart Health Institute.
“This budget reinforces the State University System’s existing investments and ensures that our facilities are equipped to train students for careers in high-demand areas,” said Governor Wayne Huizenga Jr., chair of the Board of Governor’s Facilities Committee. “This targeted funding also ensures that our universities can provide the best possible return on investment for our taxpayers and our students.”
“Governor Scott and our legislative leaders have worked together to devise and approve a budget that makes sense for our state and our students,” said Marshall Criser III, chancellor of the State University System. “The System is better off because of their leadership.”
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Facts about the State University System of Florida and the Board of Governors
The State University System of Florida is a constitutional body led by the 17-member Board of Governors. The system has 12 universities and more than 335,000 students, making it the second-largest public university system in the nation. Responsibilities include defining the distinctive mission of each institution and managing the system’s coordination and operation. The Board appoints a Chancellor who serves as the system’s chief executive. For more, visit www.flbog.edu.