Audit: CO tuition up, as state stipend decreases

DENVER (AP) — State auditors say Colorado college students are paying more for higher education now than they did when lawmakers approved a stipend program to fund students instead of institutions before the last recession.

The audit released Monday looked at the College Opportunity Fund that took effect in 2006. The program's goal was not to decrease tuition costs. But it changed the state's funding mechanism so students attending in-state schools got a stipend, rather than those funds going to colleges.

The audit found that the stipend amounts for students have decreased during the bad economy, while enrollment has grown. The stipend amounts have also not kept up with inflation.

The stipend amount for students per credit hour went from $80 in 2006 to $62 in 2011.