As most of American higher education has over time abandoned the idea that the best way to ensure access to college is by keeping tuitions low, California has clung to the principle as it was laid out in the state's 1960 master plan for higher education. To this day, students at its community colleges pay by far the country's lowest "fees" (a phrase the state uses in lieu of tuition).
Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco on Thursday proposed pouring more than $200 million in new funds into the state's public higher education system in 2008, part of what she called "the single largest increased investment in education in Louisiana's recent history."
It's an oddity of Alabama's governance structure that a college administrator who serves below the president could be in a position to direct funds to the institution and its leaders -- his or her bosses. In other words, the state allows employees of colleges and other public entities to also serve in government -- creating what has long been a sticky situation.