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Big fee increases likely for 2000

Liz Gordon MP Fri Sep 24 1999

Liz Gordon
MPThe Alliance is appalled that Canterbury and Otago Universities may have to increase fees by between $500 and $1,800 per student and is the only political party with a realistic plan to do something about it.

'These fee increases are an indication of what of what is going to happen across the country,' Alliance Education spokesperson Dr. Liz Gordon said

'We need many more skilled people in our workforce. At present the costs of a tertiary education are far too high.

'The National government has estimated that enrolments will increase by 15% if fees are abolished and every full time student receives an allowance.

'This means that at present 1 in 8 potential students are being prevented from increasing their skills because tertiary education is too expensive. This is a huge waste of a potentially highly skilled and productive workforce for business.

'If fees are increased by what is being suggested then even more people will miss out on an education.

'Only the Alliance has a well thought out plan to reduce fees. We will reduce fees over three years. If a student pays $3000 a year now they will have their fees reduced by $1000 a year. We will pay for this by introducing an Unimproved Value Tax (UVT) on commercial land to pay for it.

'UVT is administratively simple and does not affect residential land or farms. It will mainly affect the skyscrapers housing the business elite. It will not affect the majority of small businesses as it is only levied on the unimproved value of land that is worth more than $500,000.

'Other parties are either happy for fees to increase even more or they haven't said how they will pay for a reduction in fees,' Liz Gordon said.

Note the National government when costing the Alliance's free education policy assumed a 15% increase in enrolments as a result of increased participation due to free education.

ENDS

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