2004 Florida Statutes
Community college student fees.
(1) Unless otherwise provided, the provisions of this section apply only to fees charged for college credit instruction leading to an associate in arts degree, an associate in applied science degree, or an associate in science degree and noncollege credit college-preparatory courses defined in s. 1004.02
(2) All students shall be charged fees except students who are exempt from fees or students whose fees are waived. Identical fees shall be required for all community college resident students within a college who take a specific course, regardless of the program in which they are enrolled.
(3) The State Board of Education shall adopt by December 31 of each year a resident fee schedule for the following fall for advanced and professional, associate in science degree, and college-preparatory programs that produce revenues in the amount of 25 percent of the full prior year's cost of these programs. Fees for courses in college-preparatory programs and associate in arts and associate in science degree programs may be established at the same level. In the absence of a provision to the contrary in an appropriations act, the fee schedule shall take effect and the colleges shall expend the funds on instruction. If the Legislature provides for an alternative fee schedule in an appropriations act, the fee schedule shall take effect the subsequent fall semester.
(4) Each community college board of trustees shall establish tuition and out-of-state fees, which may vary no more than 10 percent below and 15 percent above the combined total of the fee schedule adopted by the State Board of Education and the technology fee adopted by a board of trustees, provided that any amount from 10 to 15 percent above the fee schedule is used only to support safety and security purposes. In order to assess an additional amount for safety and security purposes, a community college board of trustees must provide written justification to the State Board of Education based on criteria approved by the board of trustees, including, but not limited to, criteria such as local crime data and information, and strategies for the implementation of local safety plans. Should a college decide to increase the tuition fee, the funds raised by increasing the tuition fee must be expended solely for additional safety and security purposes and shall not supplant funding expended in the 1998-1999 budget for safety and security purposes.
(5) Except as otherwise provided in law, the sum of nonresident student tuition and out-of-state fees must be sufficient to defray the full cost of each program.
(6) A community college board of trustees that has a service area that borders another state may implement a plan for a differential out-of-state fee.
(7) Each community college board of trustees may establish a separate activity and service fee not to exceed 10 percent of the tuition fee, according to rules of the State Board of Education. The student activity and service fee shall be collected as a component part of the tuition and fees. The student activity and service fees shall be paid into a student activity and service fund at the community college and shall be expended for lawful purposes to benefit the student body in general. These purposes include, but are not limited to, student publications and grants to duly recognized student organizations, the membership of which is open to all students at the community college without regard to race, sex, or religion.
(8)(a) Each community college board of trustees is authorized to establish a separate fee for financial aid purposes in an additional amount up to, but not to exceed, 5 percent of the total student tuition or out-of-state fees collected. Each community college board of trustees may collect up to an additional 2 percent if the amount generated by the total financial aid fee is less than $250,000. If the amount generated is less than $250,000, a community college that charges tuition and out-of-state fees at least equal to the average fees established by rule may transfer from the general current fund to the scholarship fund an amount equal to the difference between $250,000 and the amount generated by the total financial aid fee assessment. No other transfer from the general current fund to the loan, endowment, or scholarship fund, by whatever name known, is authorized.
(b) All funds collected under this program shall be placed in the loan and endowment fund or scholarship fund of the college, by whatever name known. Such funds shall be disbursed to students as quickly as possible. An amount not greater than 40 percent of the fees collected in a fiscal year may be carried forward unexpended to the following fiscal year. However, funds collected prior to July 1, 1989, and placed in an endowment fund may not be considered part of the balance of funds carried forward unexpended to the following fiscal year.
(c) Up to 25 percent or $300,000, whichever is greater, of the financial aid fees collected may be used to assist students who demonstrate academic merit; who participate in athletics, public service, cultural arts, and other extracurricular programs as determined by the institution; or who are identified as members of a targeted gender or ethnic minority population. The financial aid fee revenues allocated for athletic scholarships and fee exemptions provided pursuant to s. 1009.25(3) for athletes shall be distributed equitably as required by s. 1000.05(3)(d). A minimum of 75 percent of the balance of these funds for new awards shall be used to provide financial aid based on absolute need, and the remainder of the funds shall be used for academic merit purposes and other purposes approved by the boards of trustees. Such other purposes shall include the payment of child care fees for students with financial need. The State Board of Education shall develop criteria for making financial aid awards. Each college shall report annually to the Department of Education on the revenue collected pursuant to this paragraph, the amount carried forward, the criteria used to make awards, the amount and number of awards for each criterion, and a delineation of the distribution of such awards. The report shall include an assessment by category of the financial need of every student who receives an award, regardless of the purpose for which the award is received. Awards which are based on financial need shall be distributed in accordance with a nationally recognized system of need analysis approved by the State Board of Education. An award for academic merit shall require a minimum overall grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale or the equivalent for both initial receipt of the award and renewal of the award.
(d) These funds may not be used for direct or indirect administrative purposes or salaries.
(9) Any community college that reports students who have not paid fees in an approved manner in calculations of full-time equivalent enrollments for state funding purposes shall be penalized at a rate equal to two times the value of such enrollments. Such penalty shall be charged against the following year's allocation from the Community College Program Fund and shall revert to the General Revenue Fund.
(10) Each community college board of trustees is authorized to establish a separate fee for technology, which may not exceed $1.80 per credit hour or credit-hour equivalent for resident students and not more than $5.40 per credit hour or credit-hour equivalent for nonresident students, to be expended according to technology improvement plans. The technology fee may apply to both college credit and college-preparatory instruction. Fifty percent of technology fee revenues may be pledged by a community college board of trustees as a dedicated revenue source for the repayment of debt, including lease-purchase agreements, not to exceed the useful life of the asset being financed. Revenues generated from the technology fee may not be bonded.
(11) Each community college board of trustees may establish a separate fee for capital improvements, technology enhancements, or equipping student buildings which may not exceed $1 per credit hour or credit-hour equivalent for residents and which equals or exceeds $3 per credit hour for nonresidents. Funds collected by community colleges through these fees may be bonded only for the purpose of financing or refinancing new construction and equipment, renovation, or remodeling of educational facilities. The fee shall be collected as a component part of the tuition and fees, paid into a separate account, and expended only to construct and equip, maintain, improve, or enhance the educational facilities of the community college. Projects funded through the use of the capital improvement fee shall meet the survey and construction requirements of chapter 1013. Pursuant to s. 216.0158, each community college shall identify each project, including maintenance projects, proposed to be funded in whole or in part by such fee. Capital improvement fee revenues may be pledged by a board of trustees as a dedicated revenue source to the repayment of debt, including lease-purchase agreements and revenue bonds, with a term not to exceed 20 years, and not to exceed the useful life of the asset being financed, only for the new construction and equipment, renovation, or remodeling of educational facilities. Community colleges may use the services of the Division of Bond Finance of the State Board of Administration to issue any bonds authorized through the provisions of this subsection. Any such bonds issued by the Division of Bond Finance shall be in compliance with the provisions of the State Bond Act. Bonds issued pursuant to the State Bond Act shall be validated in the manner provided by chapter 75. The complaint for such validation shall be filed in the circuit court of the county where the seat of state government is situated, the notice required to be published by s. 75.06 shall be published only in the county where the complaint is filed, and the complaint and order of the circuit court shall be served only on the state attorney of the circuit in which the action is pending. A maximum of 15 cents per credit hour may be allocated from the capital improvement fee for child care centers conducted by the community college.
(12) In addition to tuition, out-of-state, financial aid, capital improvement, student activity and service, and technology fees authorized in this section, each community college board of trustees is authorized to establish fee schedules for the following user fees and fines: laboratory fees; parking fees and fines; library fees and fines; fees and fines relating to facilities and equipment use or damage; access or identification card fees; duplicating, photocopying, binding, or microfilming fees; standardized testing fees; diploma replacement fees; transcript fees; application fees; graduation fees; and late fees related to registration and payment. Such user fees and fines shall not exceed the cost of the services provided and shall only be charged to persons receiving the service. A community college may not charge any fee except as authorized by law or rules of the State Board of Education. Parking fee revenues may be pledged by a community college board of trustees as a dedicated revenue source for the repayment of debt, including lease-purchase agreements and revenue bonds with terms not exceeding 20 years and not exceeding the useful life of the asset being financed. Community colleges shall use the services of the Division of Bond Finance of the State Board of Administration to issue any revenue bonds authorized by the provisions of this subsection. Any such bonds issued by the Division of Bond Finance shall be in compliance with the provisions of the State Bond Act. Bonds issued pursuant to the State Bond Act shall be validated in the manner established in chapter 75. The complaint for such validation shall be filed in the circuit court of the county where the seat of state government is situated, the notice required to be published by s. 75.06 shall be published only in the county where the complaint is filed, and the complaint and order of the circuit court shall be served only on the state attorney of the circuit in which the action is pending.
(13) The State Board of Education shall specify, as necessary, by rule, approved methods of student fee payment. Such methods shall include, but not be limited to, student fee payment; payment through federal, state, or institutional financial aid; and employer fee payments.
(14) Each community college board of trustees shall report only those students who have actually enrolled in instruction provided or supervised by instructional personnel under contract with the community college in calculations of actual full-time equivalent enrollments for state funding purposes. No student who has been exempted from taking a course or who has been granted academic or career credit through means other than actual coursework completed at the granting institution shall be calculated for enrollment in the course from which he or she has been exempted or granted credit. Community colleges that report enrollments in violation of this subsection shall be penalized at a rate equal to two times the value of such enrollments. Such penalty shall be charged against the following year's allocation from the Community College Program Fund and shall revert to the General Revenue Fund.
(15) Each community college may assess a service charge for the payment of tuition and fees in installments. Such service charge must be approved by the community college board of trustees.
(16) The State Board of Education shall adopt a rule specifying the definitions and procedures to be used in the calculation of the percentage of cost paid by students. The rule must provide for the calculation of the full cost of educational programs based on the allocation of all funds provided through the general current fund to programs of instruction, and other activities as provided in the annual expenditure analysis. The rule shall be developed in consultation with the Legislature.
History.--s. 402, ch. 2002-387; s. 6, ch. 2004-271; s. 117, ch. 2004-357.