H. B. 2155
(By Delegates Mezzatesta and Williams)
[Introduced January 13, 2003; referred to the
Committee on Education then Finance.]
A BILL to amend and reenact section one, article ten, chapter
eighteen-b of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine
hundred thirty-one, as amended, relating to higher education;
tuition and fees; and providing a method for setting a cap on
tuition and fees.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That section one, article ten, chapter eighteen-b of the code
of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended,
be amended and reenacted to read as follows:
ARTICLE 10. FEES AND OTHER MONEY COLLECTED AT STATE INSTITUTIONS
OF HIGHER EDUCATION.
§18B-10-1. Enrollment, tuition and other fees at education
institutions; refund of fees.
(a) Each governing board shall fix tuition and other fees for each school term for the different classes or categories of
students enrolling at each state institution of higher education
under its jurisdiction and may include among such fees any one or
more of the following:
(1) Health service fees;
(2) Infirmary fees;
(3) Student activities, recreational, athletic and
extracurricular fees, which fees may be used to finance a students'
attorney to perform legal services for students in civil matters at
Provided , That Such legal services shall be
limited only to are limited to only those types of cases, programs
or services approved by the administrative head of such the
institution where such the legal services are to be performed; and
(4) Graduate center fees and branch college fees, or either,
if the establishment and operations of graduate centers or branch
colleges are otherwise authorized by law.
(b) All fees collected at any graduate center or at any branch
college shall be paid into special funds and shall be used solely
for the maintenance and operation of the graduate center or branch
college at which they were collected: Provided, That the
commission shall set tuition and fee goals for residents at each
institution after examining tuition and fees at the institutions'
peers: Provided, however, That, effective the first day of July,
two thousand one, tuition and fees for nonresident, undergraduate students shall, at a minimum, cover actual instructional costs as
determined in accordance with commission policy: Provided further,
That students enrolled in undergraduate courses offered at
off-campus locations shall pay an off-campus instruction fee and
shall not may not be required to pay the athletic fee and the
student activity fee.
(c) The off-campus instruction fee shall be used solely for
the support of off-campus courses offered by the institution.
Off-campus locations for each institution shall be defined by the
appropriate governing board. The schedule of all fees, and any
changes therein, shall be entered in the minutes of the meeting of
the appropriate governing board, and the board shall file with the
legislative auditor a certified copy of such schedule and changes.
(d) In addition to the fees mentioned in the preceding
paragraph, each governing board may impose and collect a student
union building fee. All such building fees collected at an
institution shall be paid into a special student union building
fund for such institution, which is hereby created in the state
treasury, and shall be used only for the construction, operation
and maintenance of a student union building or a combination
student union and dining hall building or for the payment of the
principal of and interest on any bond issued to finance part or all
of the construction of a student union building or a combination
student union and dining hall building or the renovation of an existing structure for use as a student union building or a
combination student union and dining hall building, all as more
fully provided in section ten of this article. Any moneys in such
funds not needed immediately for such purposes may be invested in
any such bonds or other securities as are now or hereafter
authorized as proper investments for state funds.
(e) The boards shall establish the rates to be charged
full-time students enrolled during a regular academic term.
(1) For fee purposes, a full-time undergraduate student is one
enrolled for twelve or more credit hours in a regular term, and a
full-time graduate student is one enrolled for nine or more credit
hours in a regular term.
(2) Undergraduate students taking fewer than twelve credit
hours in a regular term shall have their fees reduced pro rata
based upon one twelfth of the full-time rate per credit hour, and
graduate students taking fewer than nine credit hours in a regular
term shall have their fees reduced pro rata based upon one ninth of
the full-time rate per credit hour.
(3) Fees for students enrolled in summer terms or other
nontraditional time periods shall be prorated based upon the number
of credit hours for which the student enrolls in accordance with
the above provisions.
(f) All fees are due and payable by the student upon
enrollment and registration for classes except as provided for in this subsection:
(1) The governing boards shall permit fee payments to be made
in up to three installments over the course of the academic term.
Provided , That all fees must All fees shall be paid prior to the
awarding of course credit at the end of the academic term.
(2) The governing boards also shall authorize the acceptance
of credit cards or other payment methods which may be generally
available to students for the payment of fees.
Provided , That The
governing boards may charge the students for the reasonable and
customary charges incurred in accepting credit cards and other
methods of payment.
(3) If a governing board determines that
the finances of any
student were a student's finances are affected adversely by a legal
work stoppage, that commenced on or after the first day of January,
one thousand nine hundred ninety-three it may allow the student an
additional six months to pay the fees for any academic term.
Provided , That The governing board shall determine on a
case-by-case basis if the finances of a student were are affected
On or before the first day of July, two thousand one, the
chancellor for higher education shall review policy series
twenty-two of the governing boards, related to assessment, payment
and refund of fees and determine whether a new rule should be
adopted regarding the refund of any fees upon the voluntary or involuntary withdrawal from classes of any student. The rules The
rule related to assessment, payment and refund of fees
refund of fees upon voluntary or involuntary withdrawal from
classes, shall comply with all applicable state and federal laws
and shall be uniformly applied throughout the system.
(h) In addition to the other fees
mentioned in the preceding
subsections provided in this section, each governing board may
impose, collect and distribute a fee to be used to finance a
nonprofit, student-controlled public interest research group
Provided , That if the students at such institution demonstrate
support for the increased fee in a manner and method established by
that institution's elected student government. Provided, however ,
That such fees shall Such a fee may not be used to finance
litigation against the institution.
Any proposed fee increase which would become effective
during the transition year beginning on the first day of July, two
thousand, and ending on the thirtieth day of June, two thousand
one, and which has been approved by the governing board, shall then
be submitted by the governing board to the secretary for education
and the arts for approval. Such approval shall be granted only
upon the certification that such institution requesting a fee
increase is in compliance with the strategic plans required to be
submitted, pursuant to section one-b, article one of this chapter. Notice, in the form of a report, shall be provided by the
chancellor to the legislative oversight commission on education
accountability describing such fee increases and showing how such
increases compare with the average tuition and fees charged at
comparable peer institutions in member states of the southern
regional education board.
(j) Effective the first day of July, two thousand one, tuition
and fees rates shall be determined in accordance with subsections
(k), (l) and (m) of this section.
(k) Effective the first day of July, two thousand one,
Institutions shall retain tuition and fee revenues not pledged for
bonded indebtedness or other purposes in accordance with a revised
tuition policy adopted by the respective governing boards and
approved by the commission. The revised tuition policy shall:
(1) Provide a basis for establishing nonresident tuition and
(2) Allow institutions to charge different tuition and fees
for different programs; and
(3) Establish methodology, where applicable, to ensure that,
within the appropriate time period under the compact, community and
technical college tuition rates for community and technical college
students in all independently accredited community and technical
colleges will be commensurate with the tuition and fees charged by
their peer institutions.
(l) No penalty shall (j) A penalty may not be imposed by the
commission upon any institution based upon the number of
nonresidents who attend the institution unless the commission
determines that admission of nonresidents to any institution or
program of study within the institution is impeding unreasonably
the ability of the resident students to attend the institution or
participate in the programs of the institution. The institutions
shall report annually to the commission on the numbers of
out-of-state residents nonresidents and such other enrollment
information as the commission may request.
(m) (k) Tuition and fee increases of the governing boards are
subject to rules adopted by the commission pursuant to subsection
(a), section four, article one-b of this chapter. The percentage
of a tuition and fee increase for resident students at any
institution for any year may not exceed the percentage of growth of
the state general revenue budget in the preceding fiscal year. In
any case a resident tuition and fee increase may not exceed four
percent in any year.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to provide a method for
setting a cap on tuition and fees for higher education.
Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from
the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would