University presidents ask Kentucky lawmakers for more funding

The cost of higher education continues to rise.

That's why University of Kentucky President, Dr. Lee Todd, went before state lawmakers Thursday morning, with the University of Louisville's president, to plead for more funding from the state.

Dr. Todd told lawmakers, during an education committee meeting at the state capitol, that UK is dealing with the fact there's not a lot money coming in right now.

But Dr. Todd says UK is still making progress. He says the university is currently 27th in its quest to become a top 20 research institution.

Dr. Todd reminded lawmakers that no state money goes into athletics. He says UK's athletics program actually gives back to the university, in the form of more than a million dollars in scholarships.

Dr. Todd called what the state appropriates "teaching money."

He says the lack of new money means it's been tough for UK faculty, and also on new building projects.

"You may recall UK hasn't given a salary raise for two consecutive years," Dr. Todd told lawmakers. "We're going to have to do something for the low end of our income folks, somehow, someway, maybe on a non-recurring basis this year."

Dr. Todd says the university has been able to make some efficiency in how it spends money, such as a new managed health care system, and changes to retirement.

Dr. Todd told lawmakers Thursday the university has gotten more money recently from the state, but he says it's federal stimulus money.

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