The University of Kansas has been with hit with regular budget cuts since Governor Sam Brownback, an arch-conservative, slashed taxes in 2012. Last year, the state’s contribution to public higher education fell by more than $30 million. KU, the state system’s flagship institution, saw its haul of state money trimmed by about 5 percent. Brownback wants to further shrink KU’s total budget by $7,000,000 in fiscal year 2018.
The universities have had to raise tuition and recruit more out-of-state and international students, who pay more and are eligible for less financial aid than Kansan undergraduates.
Amid the belt tightening, KU just ponied up approximately $1 million to install metal detectors in its Memorial Stadium for the first time. When basketball season starts, KU will then have to install detectors at Allen Fieldhouse.
KU had no choice but to spring for the security hardware: This is the first school year in which Kansas’s new campus-carry law will be in effect. Public colleges in the state are compelled to allow licensed concealed carriers to bring their guns onto school grounds. Stadiums are exempt — but schools are on the hook for enforcing that exception to the guns-on-campus rule.
“I think it’s just ridiculous,” KU football fan Phyllis Gregg told the local CBS affiliate of guns on campus. KU did not respond to two calls seeking comment on the exact cost of the metal detectors and how it financed the purchase.
Read more about the high prices public universities are paying to comply with campus carry.