This Week the Des Moines Register Reported Iowa Student Loan Debt Has Risen 28% Due to Budget Cuts Under Governor Reynolds

Reynolds consistently targets Iowa’s schools with budget cuts to pay for her wasteful corporate giveaways.

On Monday, the Des Moines Register reported that Iowa student loan debt has already risen 28% and is poised to skyrocket due to the budget cuts Governor Kim Reynolds targeted at higher education and job training. Despite multiple warnings that her cuts would increase costs for Iowa families, Reynolds slashed millions from our public universities and community colleges in just the last couple months of the year.

“Governor Kim Reynolds has done her best to make sure that working Iowa families are paying for her wasteful corporate giveaways that have put our state budget in the red. Iowans need leaders who will expand access to education and lower the burden of student debt. Kim Reynolds clearly has other, misplaced priorities,” said Iowa Democratic Party Spokesperson Tess Seger.

And that’s just her latest attack on education. Governor Reynolds habitually targets Iowa’s schools with cuts to pay for her self-inflicted budget crisis.

July 2015:
Branstad-Reynolds Administration “vetoed several budget line items on Thursday as well, including $2.5 million for community colleges, $2.9 million for the University of Iowa, $2.3 million for Iowa State University and $1.1 million for the University of Northern Iowa”

February 2017:
Branstad-Reynolds Administration signs “dismal,” “not sufficient” school funding bill.

University of Iowa rescinds financial aid for 2,440 students as two rounds of budget cuts eliminate $26 million from higher education budget.

April 2017:
Branstad-Reynolds Administration eliminates 3rd grade reading program due to budget shortfall.

June 2017:
Reynolds refuses to rule out additional cuts to higher education, even after 6 percent cuts in funding to University of Iowa and Iowa State University.²¹

August 2017:
University of Iowa and Iowa State University forced to hike tuition by 35 percent over five years after Reynolds Administration budget cuts.

February 2018:
In their opening proposals for the legislative session, Governor Reynolds and Iowa Republicans put education on the chopping block to preserve the huge taxpayer handouts to special interests that led to the Reynolds Budget Crisis.

March 2018:
Reynolds signs a bill cutting millions of dollars from services that provide critical support to working Iowans. Including, but not limited to:

  • $11.5 million cut from Iowa’s Regent Universities and Community Colleges
  • $10 million cut from the state economic development authority
  • $4.3 million cut from Department of Human Services.

April 2018:
Following Reynolds’ cuts, The Board of Regents proposed a plan to increase tuition by 3.5 percent at Iowa’s three public universities in the fall of 2018. STEM students in particular at Iowa State could see an even higher increase to compensate for Reynolds’ mismanagement.⁴⁷

July 2018:
Reynolds has consistently targeted opportunity education, our colleges and universities, with some of the most vicious, politically motivated budget cuts made necessary by her robbery of Iowa tax dollars. Those cuts forced the University of Iowa to seriously scale back their services for working Iowa families.

  • Those cut services include:Critical resources for working people through the Labor Center
  • Support for aging Iowans
  • Tools for encouraging communication between the U.S. and China Technology for Iowans with disabilities
  • Resources for health professionals looking to start new businesses