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Despite Looming Budget Cuts, MSU Considers Issuing Bonds

MSU Carrington

Missouri’s Deputy Education Commissioner Paul Wagner issued a warning Friday for Missouri colleges, saying federal funds that have protected universities from major cuts are expected to run out. Missouri State University officials say they recognize those budget challenges, but are exploring the possibility of issuing bonds to fund new facilities anyway. KSMU’s Jennifer Moore has details.

At its regular meeting Friday, MSU’s Board of Governors approved an “intent to issue bonds,” which is the first step in making those bonds a reality.

According to a release from the university, the board could vote to issue up to $52 million in bonds by the end of this year.The debt for any new buildings would be financed by a combination of sources, including revenue generated by the new facilities, private gifts, and university funds.

That same release says MSU President Dr. Michael Nietzel told the Board that bond rates are unusually favorable right now, and that he feels the university must continue to improve, despite funding challenges.

Governor Jay Nixon struck a deal with higher education leaders last fall that freezes tuition for the second consecutive year. He promised to limit higher education fundingtoa 5.2 percent cut.

For KSMU News, I’m Jennifer Moore.