weather icon Clear

Panels endorse revised Nevada higher education funding formula

CARSON CITY — Members of a joint legislative panel formally adopted a new funding formula Wednesday for Nevada’s universities and community colleges, a change that would shift more general fund support to campuses in Southern Nevada.

The action was one of several taken by a joint subcommittee of the Senate Finance and Assembly Ways and Means committees.

Under the new formula previously adopted by the Board Regents, funding would be based on how many class credits students complete. Additionally, upper-level courses would be given more weight in the funding balance because they cost more to offer.

University officials initially said the shift would mean about $13 million going to Southern Nevada schools from the north.

Legislative analysts are crunching final numbers on how individual campuses would be affected, though Chancellor Dan Klaich said he didn’t expect a big change. Final tallies are expected to be presented Saturday when the full committees meet to close the higher education budgets.

Committee members also agreed that grades of F will be counted for funding for the next two years while institutions adopt procedures to account for them. But going forward, institutions would receive no funding for students who receive an F because they didn’t attend class.

Gov. Brian Sandoval’s budget recommends roughly $750 million over the next two-year budget cycle for the state’s seven institutions that includes two universities.

Legislators on the higher education budget subcommittee also endorsed allowing institutions to retain out-of-state tuition and students fees generated on individual campuses. Previously those revenues were used to offset general fund support.

But they failed to reach agreement on a proposal that would require each campus to “carve out” 5 percent of their budget to be used as a performance incentive. Campuses would be able to tap those funds only if they met specific performance goals.

Assemblyman Randy Kirner, R-Reno, said forcing institutions to hold back money is more like punishment.

“If you really want to make it cool, you say if you do a good (job) you get more money,” he said.

Assemblywoman Lucy Flores, D-Las Vegas, agreed.

“Maybe it would make more sense if they were working toward something additional,” she said. “Incentives should be something extra … not something we withhold.”

The debate on that issue will continue Saturday.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
Politics Videos
Accused murder mastermind Frank LaPena is granted a pardon - VIDEO
A onetime Las Vegas casino bell captain who spent 25 years in prison as the accused mastermind in a notorious 1974 contract murder won his last legal battle for freedom Wednesday when the state Pardons Board granted him a conditional pardon restoring all his civil rights. (James Schaeffer / Las Vegas Review-Journal)
The Middle: Nonpartisan voters and the 2020 election
How will the growing segment of nonpartisan or independent voters — those who have not registered with either political party, or who have left partisan politics behind — vote in 2020?
Tomi Lahren Speaks at UNLV - VIDEO
Fox News contributor and UNLV alumna Tomi Lahren returned to campus Wednesday night for a speech, titled “Stay Triggered,” that drew an auditorium of supporters as well as a group of protesters outside. (James Schaeffer/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Bernie Sanders released from Las Vegas hospital - VIDEO
Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., issues a statement after he was released from Desert Springs Hospital Medical Center on Friday, Oct. 4, 2019, after suffering a heart attack earlier in the week. (Bernie Sanders via Twitter)
Democratic presidential candidates speak on impeachment - VIDEO
Democratic presidential candidates attending the March for Our Lives/Giffords Gun Safety Forum in Las Vegas comment on possible impeachment proceedings. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Joe Biden Las Vegas Rally Highlights - VIDEO
2020 presidential candidate, Joe Biden, came to Las Vegas to talk guns, climate change and the Ukranian-Trump scandal. Biden was interrupted by a protestor who sat amongst supporters at the rally and continued with his speech. (Angus Kelly & James Schaeffer / Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Joe Biden comments on Trump and his campaign efforts in Nevada - VIDEO
After an impeachment inquiry was opened on Donald Trump, Joe Biden talks with Review-Journal politics reporter Rory Appleton about Trump and his campaign in Nevada. (Angus Kelly & James Schaeffer / Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Bernie Sanders Unveils Affordable Housing Plan - Video
Bernie Sanders sits down with the Las Vegas Review-Journal to talk about his new affordable housing plan he unveiled at Plumbers & Pipefitters.
Jim Marchant talks gun control and Dreamers - Video
Republican Candidate for District 4 Jim Marchant talks about gun control and immigration policies. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Hurricanes, Gender, and Science in the Press
Imagine if the mainstream media’s current hurricane-sized obsession with scientific accuracy applied to gender.
Cory Booker on college tuition and minimum wage
Cory Booker talks on the RJ Politics podcast about college debt, informing workers about their rights and livable wages.
Nevada Politics Today: Teacher raises - VIDEO
Jason Goudie, the chief financial officer for the Clark County School District, talks about teacher pay and raises. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas homeless ordinance becomes national campaign issue

Presidential candidates Julián Castro, Elizabeth Warren, Tom Steyer, Cory Booker, Bernie Sanders, Joe Biden, Kamala Harris and Pete Buttigieg have all publicly opposed a Las Vegas ordinance banning campaign in public spaces downtown.

Accused murder mastermind Frank LaPena granted pardon

Frank LaPena who spent decades in prison after being convicted of being the mastermind behind the murder of a Caesars Palace executive’s wife, was granted a pardon by the state Pardons Board on Wednesday.