The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

Proposed legislation would cap tuition increases at 3 percent at Iowa’s public universities

Iowa lawmakers introduced a bill to cap tuition increases and add Iowa lawmakers to the Iowa Board of Regents.
Iowa+Board+of+Regents+president+Michael+Richards+prepares+for+lunch+break+during+a+board+meeting+in+Cedar+Falls%2C+Iowa%2C+on+Wednesday%2C+Nov.+15%2C+2023.
Cody Blissett
Iowa Board of Regents president Michael Richards prepares for lunch break during a board meeting in Cedar Falls, Iowa, on Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2023.

Iowa lawmakers proposed a bill to cap tuition raises at a 3 percent increase for students at Iowa’s three regent-controlled universities pursuing an undergraduate degree.

The bill would also prohibit the Iowa Board of Regents, which supervises Iowa’s public universities and approves tuition increases, from increasing tuition by more than 3 percent.

In June, the regents approved a 3.5 percent tuition increase for University of Iowa students at the start of the fall semester in an attempt to address inflationary costs — a $305 increase to undergraduate tuition and a $381 increase to graduate tuition. This increase partially influenced a tuition revenue increase of $24.7 million compared to the previous year at the university.

House File 2327, introduced Monday, also outlines changes to diversity, equity, and inclusion requirements, solidifying DEI recommendations issued by regents this fall.

The DEI changes include:

  • Prohibiting institutions from hiring new administrators without regent approval
  • Regular review of services provided by offices that support diversity or multicultural affairs to ensure services are available to all students.
  • Preventing universities from requiring anyone on campus to submit a DEI statement, disclose pronouns, or be evaluated based on DEI participation.
  • Prohibit the consideration of race and other protected class characteristics during the admission process.
  • Separation of personal political advocacy from an employee’s job duties and business of the institution
  • Direct institutions to adopt policies and procedures that are designed to explore potential recruitment strategies to advance the diversity of intellectual and philosophical perspectives.

The bill also called for a restructuring of the regents’ ability to hire a new president.

The regent’s presidential hiring would shift to a committee that would recommend a candidate.

The current hiring process includes universities filling presidential vacancies to appoint search committees of campus members to recommend finalists to the regents, which agrees on a hire in a closed session.

The change would limit the full board of regents from hiring a new president unless the subcommittee recommended that candidate.

The bill would also expand the nine-member Board of Regents by two non-voting members. One of the two new regents would be selected by the Speaker of the Iowa House and the other would be selected by the majority leader of the Iowa Senate.

Regents spokesperson Josh Lehman wrote in an email statement to The Daily Iowan that the regents are taking time to analyze the proposed legislation and will work directly with legislators as the legislative process moves forward.

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About the Contributors
Roxy Ekberg, News Reporter
she/her/hers
Roxy Ekberg is a first year at the University of Iowa. In the Honors Program, she is double majoring in journalism and political science with a minor in Spanish. Prior to her role as a politics reporter, she worked news reporter at the Daily Iowan and worked at her local newspaper The Wakefield Republican.
Cody Blissett, Visuals Editor
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Cody Blissett is a visual editor at The Daily Iowan. He is a third year student at the University of Iowa studying cinema and screenwriting. This is his first year working for The Daily Iowan.