Public University and College Debt
At the end of fiscal 2011, Texas’ public four-year universities and colleges had $12.5 billion in outstanding debt. While fall enrollment in these institutions rose 32 percent to 610,558 students from 2001 to 2011, outstanding debt increased by 246 percent in that same period.
Public universities and colleges debt accounted for almost 31 percent of all state-issued debt outstanding in fiscal 2011. These institutions can accrue debt through revenue bonds (including tuition revenue bonds), which totaled more than $10 billion in debt outstanding in fiscal 2011.
Some University of Texas and Texas A&M University system institutions have issued debt through Permanent University Fund (PUF) Bonds totaling nearly $2.4 billion in fiscal 2011. Institutions not permitted to issue PUF bonds have $40.8 million of additional debt outstanding in Higher Education Assistance Fund bond issuances.
For public universities, debt outstanding per student in fiscal 2011 totaled $20,519 per student. This amount of growth in debt outstanding since fiscal 2001 exceeds inflation by 13 percent during the same period.
Texas Public Universities and Colleges Debt Outstanding
The Texas Bond Review Board collects debt outstanding data for each university system in Texas. This data is a snapshot of debt outstanding as of Aug. 31, 2011, and identifies debt by each university, system, college or health science center institution. It was submitted by each system in response to a request from the Comptroller’s office. Fall enrollment information was obtained from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.