CU's rising tuition

In-state tuition increases at CU-Boulder since 2004:

2014-15: 3.6 to 4.1 percent *

2013-14: 8.7 percent

2012-13: 5 percent

2011-12: 9.3 percent

2010-11: 8.9 percent

2009-10: 8.8 percent

2008-09: 9.3 percent

2007-08: 19 percent

2006-07: 2.4 percent

2005-06: 27.8 percent

2004-05: 9 percent

* Proposed rate

'Coffee and Campus Budget' dates

March 13

March 17

March 20

March 26

April 4

April 24

To register and for more information:

As the vote to raise tuition for the next academic year gets closer, University of Colorado financial officials are hoping to clear up any confusion about the campus budget in a casual setting, over coffee.

Officials on the Boulder campus plan to host six informal discussions on the financial situation, goals and decision-making processes starting Thursday as part of a new initiative called "Coffee and the Campus Budget."

Steve McNally, senior associate vice chancellor of budget, and Kelly Fox, campus chief financial officer, will break down the planned tuition increase, state funding, revenue streams and other components of the campus budget.


"It's a way for the budget officials at CU-Boulder to conduct direct outreach to faculty and staff and students to help them understand the budget processes a little bit better," said CU spokesman Bronson Hilliard.

Fox said she hopes the talks will allow the campus community to gain a deeper understanding of the pressures CU has faced as state funding for higher education has declined, while also creating a space for dialogue among campus leaders and students, faculty and staff members about what's important to them.

"I get a lot of questions about the budget and that makes me think, 'OK, we need to do a better job of making sure people have a general understanding,'" she said.

Though the Boulder campus is predicted to receive a $6 million increase in funding from the state next year, it's also faced with a state-mandated 4.5 percent salary increase for classified staff members and considering a 3 percent salary increase for faculty and exempt employees.

In February, the Board of Regents was presented with an initial proposal to raise tuition by between 3.6 and 4.1 percent, one of the lowest proposed hikes in recent years.

Fox said the long-term budget picture is not as optimistic.

Costs such as deferred maintenance, technology upgrades and compliance continue to rise, recruiting students becomes more competitive and federal research funding remains tight.

"We have reached a point where we can't have pockets of misunderstanding in our core campus communities about the budget," Hilliard said. "We're headed towards a budget situation with the state's funding picture that every faculty, staff and student needs to be aware of."

To improve that long-term outlook, Fox said the campus has set a goal of generating an additional $10 million by 2015-2016 by creating new revenue streams, increasing existing revenue streams and containing costs.

While the budget can often seem complicated, CU officials said they hope to make it easier to understand and encourage participation in talks about tuition, creating new and innovative revenue streams and other financial decisions.

The CU regents are set to vote on the campus budget, which includes the tuition increase, at their meeting April 29 and 30 at the CU Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora.

Contact Camera Staff Writer Sarah Kuta at 303-473-1106 or