By RICK HAYES
INA — —
Rend Lake College's Board of Trustees approved a $2 per credit hour increase in tuition rates beginning with the 2013 summer term during a meeting Tuesday night at the college's Student Center.
The increase, from $93 per credit hour to $95, is for in-district students. The out-of-district tuition rate will be set at a later date, according to information provided.
"The board has worked hard to keep down tuition," said Board Vice-Chair Ed Cunningham, who presided over the meeting. "This has been our first increase in three years. We have looked at schools around us, and we still have one of the lowest tuition rates around."
Director of Finance Bob Carlock said the average tuition rate in the area is $95.98, and the RLC increase is the smallest increase of any college reporting rates this year.
"We've not only worked hard to keep the tuition rates down, but we've also strived to keep property taxes down. While some taxing districts have increased anywhere from 5 to 13 percent, our property tax increase is only 2 percent," he said.
In explaining the increase, college officials stated, "In order to meet the forecasted budgetary needs of the college in light of the fact that the college is expecting to receive decreased amounts of funding from state sources and to maintain non-deficit spending, it is necessary to increase in-district tuition by $2 per credit hour. This increase will allow the college to remain competitive with our peer group schools, and will allow us to maintain our stature as one of the most affordable community colleges in the state."
According to information provided, RLC new rate is $1 higher than nearby John A. Logan College, but remains the second lowest of 11 other colleges listed by college personnel. College officials also stated that due to administrative rules, the college may set the out-of-state and out-of-country rates for all other credit instruction offered by the college at a minimum of 1.67 times it in-district tuition rates.
"Due to the fact that we receive no equalization or credit hour reimbursement for out-of-state or out-of-country students, the $150 tuition rate will help to cover all costs of instruction for these students," information states.
In other business, the board: