Budget woes far from over
Despite what MLA Dave Hancock had to say, 2014 budget for Alberta post-secondary education will essentially remain the same
Mount Royal University is still feeling the repercussions of the budget cuts to post-secondary institutions across Alberta in 2013. What should students expect for next year? MLA Dave Hancock discussed this year’s budget in a recent conference call.
Although post-secondary education took a major hit last year, Hancock is hopeful that can be turned around.
“The overall goals is making sure that every Albertan that wants to advance their education has the opportunity to do so,” said Hancock.
The new budget outlined a $1 billion spending increase this year, which appears to mean more for health care and post-secondary institutions that suffered the brunt of last years less than popular budget.
Hidden within this budget, causing many to be skeptical, is nearly $5 billion borrowed for schools, health facilities and roads; all of this adding to the quickly growing government debt.
Many opposing politicians feel that the Tories are relying far to heavily on low interest rates and debt.
Early in the conference call Hancock sounded supportive of the budget cuts that saw MRU lose several programs, saying “last year’s budget challenged post-secondary institutions to critically evaluate programs and services — an important piece of work that you need to do from time to time.”
Alberta party leader Greg Clark is with students, feeling that this new budget is no better than the last.
“If Albertans are happy with the way these things are now, then they should be happy with this budget”, mirroring that statement on the other side by saying “if they were hoping for improvements they should be very unhappy.”
As MRU students what does this mean for us? Not a whole lot, unfortunately.
Although many of the students studying at Mount Royal were hoping for some changes from last year’s drastic budget announcement, they will be sad to see that will not be coming in the 2014 fiscal year.
Essentially everything will stay the same at MRU, with the exception of the new Riddell Library and Learning centre, breaking ground in April on this year, an addition highlighted in Hancock’s conference call.