StFX officials say they agree with financial accountability legislation, but want tuition cap elimin
Friday, 27 March 2015 11:31
An officials at StFX says they understand the reasoning behind new provincial legislation aimed at increasing the financial accountability of universities.
Government officials say they will introduce legislation that will allow them to get a clearer picture of the finances of the province's 10 post-secondary institutions.
Andrew Beckett, the vice-president of finance at StFX, says they've been speaking with provincial officials about these changes, so they don't come as a surprise.
Beckett tells The Hawk the new legislation is a reasonable measure.
"We receive over $30 million from the provincial government," he says. "It's a key part of our funding mechanism, so we recognize the importance of being seen as a valued partner with the province."
Beckett says provincial funding makes up close to 50 per cent of their annual revenue.
A provincial consultation report indicates there will be a $50 million gap between provincial funding and what university officials need within three years.
Beckett says that seems like a likely scenario based on his numbers.
"It points to a fundamental problem with the cost structures and revenue structures associated with universities."
Beckett says personnel costs are their highest expenditure, at 75 per cent.
He says their costs increase anywhere from three-to-five per cent a year, but tuition only increases three per cent due to the tuition cap.
Beckett says he'd like the cap removed, and university officials to have more control to set their own rates.
He says he understands that can't happen without legislation like this coming into place.
Price of gas up slightly
Friday, 27 March 2015 10:52
Pump prices have increased slightly.
Members of the Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board raised the price of gas 1.3 cents a litre at midnight.
That means the new range for a litre of regular self-serve in the Quad Counties, depending on where you fill up, is between a minimum of $1.07.6 and a maximum of $1.10.5.
The price of diesel went down; it dropped 2.5 cents a litre.
The new diesel range is anywhere between $1.07 and $1.09.8.