Gov. Chris Gregoire has a few misgivings about what state policy makers had to do as they worked through the Great Recession over the past four years, and tuition policy is one apparent regret. The two-term governor told The Olympian’s editorial board Tuesday that she would like to see tuition reduced in the future, reversing what has been a galloping growth in students’ share of costs for higher education – now hitting 70 percent of the cost of education at four-year universities.
That is double what tuition’s share was in 2000.
Gregoire, a Democrat, did not specify how low she wants tuition to drop, and her top spokesman Cory Curtis later said there was nothing specific in the works in terms of a proposal for her successor, Gov.-elect Jay Inslee. “I think it’s still a question, coming out of the recession, what can the budget handle. This may not be the time to handle that,” Curtis said.