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Bill Would Boost College Funding, Freeze Tuition

Students and faculty walk out of the Campus Center at UMass Boston. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
Students and faculty walk out of the Campus Center at UMass Boston. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

State lawmakers are set to hear a plan that would boost state funding for public colleges and universities while freezing tuition and fees for the next five years.

Dubbed the "Cherish Act" by its supporters, the bill scheduled for a hearing Tuesday before the Legislature's Higher Education Committee aims to increase spending by about $500 million a year. Advocates say it would reverse what they view as a pattern of chronic underfunding of state schools.

The proposal would require the governor and Legislature to fund colleges and universities at no less than the levels they received in 2001, adjusted for inflation over that period.

The five-year freeze on tuition and fees would be contingent upon those appropriations.

The legislation has more than 100 sponsors in the House and Senate.

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