O’Mara reappointed to Public Higher Education Funding Commission

SPRINGFIELD, Feb. 23 – State Rep. Jennifer O’Mara, D-Delaware, today announced her reappointment to the state legislature’s Public Higher Education Funding Commission.

The purpose of the commission is to review and make recommendations related to higher education funding, affordability and effectiveness, administration, and operations.

O’Mara, who also organized the House Student Debt Caucus, will help develop a higher education funding formula for the 14 Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education universities and four state-related universities, which are Penn State, Pitt, Temple and Lincoln universities. Funding for the 18 higher education institutions will be determined on a case-by-case basis considering factors such as goals for higher education, virtual learning needs, graduation, retention and enrollment rates, student debt and financial aid, and any other factors related to higher education and the distribution of funding. The General Assembly would then need to authorize the proposed funding formula.

“I’m honored to be reappointed to this commission and re-evaluate what higher education institutions need most right now as we continue recovering from COVID-19,” O’Mara said. “We faced unchartered territory in the last year that created countless hurdles in our higher education system. As we begin crafting our annual budget in Harrisburg, I’ll be able to bring these issues to the forefront of the commission and fight for fair funding.”

O’Mara said the commission will also review and make findings and recommendations to the commonwealth, consult with and utilize expert advice, hold public hearings, review other states’ higher education funding formulas, and develop proposed legislation based on the commission’s findings.

For more information, residents can call O’Mara’s office at 610-544-9878.