MO House Budget Chairman Plans to Restore Higher Education Cuts

Jefferson City pic

Afternoon sunlight on the state capitol building in Jefferson City Missouri on a spring afternoon, Jefferson City is located in the center of Missouri along the Missouri River. (Photo by: Education Images/UIG via Getty Images)

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo (Missourinet) -The Missouri House Budget Committee chairman will release details soon about his plan to make restorations to higher education cuts proposed by Governor Eric Greitens (R).

Budget Committee Chairman Scott Fitzpatrick, R-Shell Knob, credits conservative budgeting practices used by his committee last year regarding the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) program.

Fitzpatrick says that last year, given the uncertainty of the CHIP program at the federal level, the budget committee decided to protect Missouri’s at-risk children without relying on federal funds.

Fitzpatrick tells the Capitol Press Corps that federal funding for CHIP has now been extended through fiscal year 2023.

“As a result of that reauthorization we will have funding that we didn’t necessarily plan on having last year, that we’re going to try to leverage at least a significant portion of that,” Fitzpatrick told Missourinet.

Fitzpatrick made his comments during a news briefing with other House Republican leaders, after session adjourned for the week on Thursday morning in Jefferson City.

“We’re going to release the subs (substitutes) in about two weeks, the committee substitutes, and you’ll see all the final details,” Fitzpatrick says. “What I can tell you is it’s going to be significant, in the tens of millions of dollars.”

Fitzpatrick says the proposed higher education cuts would be “extremely difficult” for institutions of higher learning, as well as for families and students from across the state.

Governor Greitens’ proposed budget would decrease the Department of Higher Education’s budget by about $96 million, according to numbers from the Missouri Office of Administration (OA).

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