Arizona Supreme Court upholds dismissal of tuition challenge

PHOENIX

The Arizona Supreme Court on Thursday upheld a lower court’s ruling dismissing a challenge to the state Board of Regents’ 2003 decision to increase in-state university tuition by nearly 40 percent.

Four people who were University of Arizona students in 2003 sued the regents, alleging that the 39.1 percent tuition hike was excessive and violated the “as nearly free as possible” provision of the state constitution.

The regents oversee the UA, Arizona State University and Northern Arizona University and set tuition rates.

The increase escalated in-state residents’ undergraduate costs by about $1,000 to approximately $3,600 a year in 2003.

The Arizona Supreme Court agreed with the Maricopa County Superior Court’s 2004 decision dismissing the case, saying the amount of tuition for a particular academic year is not proper for the courts to address.

“This decision affirms our authority,” said regents president Fred Boice. “Setting tuition is one of the most important decisions we make and we will continue to follow processes that support our commitment to access, affordability and quality.”

– Associated Press



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