Jenna Robinson of the Martin Center analyzes the portion of the N.C. Senate’s budget plan that focuses on higher education.

The budget released by the North Carolina Senate in early May sets a careful course for higher education. It includes modest increases over last year’s budget for both the University of North Carolina system and the state’s community college system. It also includes several policy changes aimed at making higher education more transparent and efficient.

The budget will increase the appropriation to the UNC system to $2.88 billion in 2017-18 and $2.95 billion in 2018-19. This is a $98.9 million, or 3.5 percent, increase over the 2016-17 revised budget. As usual, the bulk of the funding for higher education is determined by enrollment. Growing schools, such as UNC Charlotte and UNC Wilmington, receive the largest budget increases.

Large increases in funding also go to the UNC Board of Governors and UNC-Chapel Hill’s Area Health Education Center. …

… The Senate budget also includes several significant policy changes that affect universities. These additions are intended to make the universities more efficient, effective, and transparent.