Gov. Ed Rendell signed the $28 billion state budget into law Tuesday morning, allocating about $318.1 million to Penn State.
State-related universities like Penn State, member colleges of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education and community colleges will receive the same funding they were appropriated last year, according to a press release issued by Rendell's office.
The budget will not increase taxes but the budget allows for the state to boost the basic education subsidy to public school districts by $250 million -- an increase of 4.5 percent -- to $5.8 billion, according to the Rendell statement.
University officials said they were grateful for the funding provided by the government -- even if it wasn't any higher than last year.
"Given the current economic climate and challenges faced by the commonwealth, we are grateful that the legislature and governor have continued to support Penn State at level funding," Penn State spokesman Geoff Rushton said.
Rushton said the university is pleased the budget could be resolved in a timely manner because it allows Penn State to set the university's budget for the 2010-2011 academic year at the Board of Trustees meeting to be held at Penn State DuBois on Friday.
In addition to the $318.1 million base appropriations from the state, Penn State will also receive $15.8 million in federal stimulus funds, Rushton said.
Members of the University Park Undergraduate Association (UPUA) -- who have taken on the issue of rising tuition as a main initiative -- said they are glad to see things moving from the state level downward.
"As a student leader, I am grateful that the budget is passed and Penn State gets the same amount of money as last year," UPUA President Christian Ragland said.
Ragland (senior-political science) said he is happy Penn State doesn't have to face a budget cut but stressed that tuition is still high for many students.
"The battle is not over yet," he said.
Ragland had his own message for the state legislature.
"I urge the Pennsylvania state government and the university administration to find ways to make college affordable for all students," he said.
To offset those rising and unavoidable costs, most agencies of the state government have to absorb deep cuts, according to the Rendell statement.