By MELINDA DESLATTE
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Louisiana's higher education chief, Jim Purcell, says colleges and universities will again ask lawmakers to relinquish their tuition-setting authority, so the schools can move closer to the tuition rates charged by their peers in the South.
Purcell told the joint House and Senate education committee Tuesday that he will ask the Legislature to let the higher education management boards set their own tuition.
The change would require support from two-thirds of lawmakers. Previous attempts by college leaders to take charge of the rates charged to students have failed in the Legislature.
Lawmakers gave the schools limited ability to raise tuition, but with caps.
Purcell says annual state general fund spending on higher education has been cut $625 million since 2008. He says tuition has increased $331 million during that time.
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