In 2017, the Kentucky General Assembly created an outcomes-based funding model through the adoption of Senate Bill 153. The model adopted will tie funding of Kentucky's higher education system to the outcomes they are able to produce.
This model confirms once again that NKU is substantially underfunded compared to peer universities. In the final report produced by the 2016 task force, it recommends the disparity be remedied by providing funding to NKU to achieve a common, equitable starting point.
In his 2016 budget proposal, Gov. Bevin appropriated an additional $10.7 million in annual funding to NKU to fix the disparity. Through the legislative process and conference committee, half of the disparity ($5.1 million) was appropriated.
Now, we must urge officials to continue to finish the job through leveling the playing field by appropriating the other half of the documented disparity ($5.1 million).
Since 2006, NKU's KERS contribution rates have increased from 8% to 49%. In dollars, the increase has risen from $2.2 million in 2006 to $19.1 million in 2017. NKU's KERS contribution equates to 38.7% of our total annual state appropriation.
If the anticipated special sessions on pension reform result in KERS contribution rate increases, the following hypothetical situations would impact NKU as such:
We must request that the legislature hold universities harmless by offering them options for relief including: