OGDEN -- Weber State and Utah State universities will increase tuition by 5 percent, effective this summer.
At a meeting held Friday afternoon, the State Board of Regents approved 5 percent tuition increases at six public colleges and universities -- University of Utah, Utah State, Weber State, Southern Utah University, Snow College and Dixie State University.
Two other institutions, Utah Valley University and Salt Lake Community College, were granted 6 percent increases.
"Overall, Utah and Weber State University have done an excellent job at navigating through a challenging and difficult situation this year, but the economic situation is turning around and looking brighter so the funding situation is also a little better and we hope that pattern continues," said Mike Vaughan, WSU provost and vice president for academic affairs.
While the increase at Weber State amounts to $198 per year, based on a full year of enrollment, for most students it will be the lowest amount in a decade, according to the Board of Regents.
"Regents are asked to consider a number of factors when setting tuition, including state funding, institutional need and inflation," said Dave Buhler, commissioner of higher education. "Higher education saw a budget increase this year, and we are pleased that the Legislature made support for higher education a priority."
However, Buhler said, legislative funding did not cover all mandatory cost increases, so some tuition increases are needed to fill that void.
"We try to be as efficient as we can," Vaughan said. "The increase in tuition helps our funding picture this year. For the first time in several years, we have additional money allocated for other educational expenses."
Vaughan also said money approved by the Legislature this year will help construct a new science building. The university plans to ask for more funding during the next session, he said.
Board of Regents Chairwoman Bonnie Jean Beesley said with help from the Legislature, it is possible to keep tuition increases to a minimum.
The Board of Regents also approved award amounts for both the New Century and Regents' scholarships for the 2013-14 academic year.
Those receiving the New Century scholarship will receive $1,100 a semester for up to four semesters. Recipients of the Regents' scholarship will receive a one-time award of $1,000.