(1) Unless otherwise provided, this section applies only to fees charged for college credit instruction leading to an associate in arts degree, an associate in applied science degree, an associate in science degree, or a baccalaureate degree authorized pursuant to s. 1007.33, for noncollege credit college-preparatory courses defined in s. 1004.02, and for educator preparation institute programs defined in s. 1004.85.
(2)(a) All students shall be charged fees except students who are exempt from fees or students whose fees are waived.
(b) Tuition and out-of-state fees for upper-division courses must reflect the fact that the 1community college has a less expensive cost structure than that of a state university. Therefore, the board of trustees shall establish tuition and out-of-state fees for upper-division courses in baccalaureate degree programs approved pursuant to s. 1007.33 consistent with law and proviso language in the General Appropriations Act. However, the board of trustees may not vary tuition and out-of-state fees as provided in subsection (4).
(3)(a) Effective January 1, 2008, for advanced and professional, postsecondary vocational, college preparatory, and educator preparation institute programs, the following tuition and fee rates shall apply:
1. The standard tuition shall be $51.35 per credit hour for students who are residents for tuition purposes.
2. The standard tuition shall be $51.35 per credit hour and the out-of-state fee shall be $154.14 per credit hour for students who are nonresidents for tuition purposes.
(b) Effective January 1, 2008, for baccalaureate degree programs, the following tuition and fee rates shall apply:
1. The tuition shall be $65.47 per credit hour for students who are residents for tuition purposes.
2. The sum of the tuition and the out-of-state fee per credit hour for students who are nonresidents for tuition purposes shall be no more than 85 percent of the sum of the tuition and the out-of-state fee at the state university nearest the 1community college.
(c) Beginning with the 2008-2009 fiscal year and each year thereafter, the tuition and the out-of-state fee shall increase at the beginning of each fall semester at a rate equal to inflation, unless otherwise provided in the General Appropriations Act. The Office of Economic and Demographic Research shall report the rate of inflation to the President of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Governor, and the State Board of Education each year prior to March 1. For purposes of this paragraph, the rate of inflation shall be defined as the rate of the 12-month percentage change in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers, U.S. City Average, All Items, or successor reports as reported by the United States Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, or its successor for December of the previous year. In the event the percentage change is negative, the tuition and the out-of-state fee per credit hour shall remain at the same levels as the prior fiscal year.
(4) Each 1community college board of trustees shall establish tuition and out-of-state fees, which may vary no more than 10 percent below and 15 percent above the combined total of the standard tuition and fees established in subsection (3).
(5) Except as otherwise provided in law, the sum of nonresident student tuition and out-of-state fees must be sufficient to defray the full cost of each program.
(6) A 1community college board of trustees that has a service area that borders another state may implement a plan for a differential out-of-state fee.
(7) Each 1community college board of trustees may establish a separate activity and service fee not to exceed 10 percent of the tuition fee, according to rules of the State Board of Education. The student activity and service fee shall be collected as a component part of the tuition and fees. The student activity and service fees shall be paid into a student activity and service fund at the 1community college and shall be expended for lawful purposes to benefit the student body in general. These purposes include, but are not limited to, student publications and grants to duly recognized student organizations, the membership of which is open to all students at the 1community college without regard to race, sex, or religion. No 1community college shall be required to lower any activity and service fee approved by the board of trustees of the 1community college and in effect prior to October 26, 2007, in order to comply with the provisions of this subsection.
(8)(a) Each 1community college board of trustees is authorized to establish a separate fee for financial aid purposes in an additional amount up to, but not to exceed, 5 percent of the total student tuition or out-of-state fees collected. Each 1community college board of trustees may collect up to an additional 2 percent if the amount generated by the total financial aid fee is less than $500,000. If the amount generated is less than $500,000, a 1community college that charges tuition and out-of-state fees at least equal to the average fees established by rule may transfer from the general current fund to the scholarship fund an amount equal to the difference between $500,000 and the amount generated by the total financial aid fee assessment. No other transfer from the general current fund to the loan, endowment, or scholarship fund, by whatever name known, is authorized.
(b) All funds collected under this program shall be placed in the loan and endowment fund or scholarship fund of the college, by whatever name known. Such funds shall be disbursed to students as quickly as possible. An amount not greater than 40 percent of the fees collected in a fiscal year may be carried forward unexpended to the following fiscal year. However, funds collected prior to July 1, 1989, and placed in an endowment fund may not be considered part of the balance of funds carried forward unexpended to the following fiscal year.
(c) Up to 25 percent or $600,000, whichever is greater, of the financial aid fees collected may be used to assist students who demonstrate academic merit; who participate in athletics, public service, cultural arts, and other extracurricular programs as determined by the institution; or who are identified as members of a targeted gender or ethnic minority population. The financial aid fee revenues allocated for athletic scholarships and fee exemptions provided pursuant to s. 1009.25(3) for athletes shall be distributed equitably as required by s. 1000.05(3)(d). A minimum of 75 percent of the balance of these funds for new awards shall be used to provide financial aid based on absolute need, and the remainder of the funds shall be used for academic merit purposes and other purposes approved by the boards of trustees. Such other purposes shall include the payment of child care fees for students with financial need. The State Board of Education shall develop criteria for making financial aid awards. Each college shall report annually to the Department of Education on the revenue collected pursuant to this paragraph, the amount carried forward, the criteria used to make awards, the amount and number of awards for each criterion, and a delineation of the distribution of such awards. The report shall include an assessment by category of the financial need of every student who receives an award, regardless of the purpose for which the award is received. Awards which are based on financial need shall be distributed in accordance with a nationally recognized system of need analysis approved by the State Board of Education. An award for academic merit shall require a minimum overall grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale or the equivalent for both initial receipt of the award and renewal of the award.
(d) These funds may not be used for direct or indirect administrative purposes or salaries.
(9) Any 1community college that reports students who have not paid fees in an approved manner in calculations of full-time equivalent enrollments for state funding purposes shall be penalized at a rate equal to two times the value of such enrollments. Such penalty shall be charged against the following year’s allocation from the 1Community College Program Fund and shall revert to the General Revenue Fund.
(10) Each 1community college board of trustees is authorized to establish a separate fee for technology, which may not exceed 5 percent of tuition per credit hour or credit-hour equivalent for resident students and may not exceed 5 percent of tuition and the out-of-state fee per credit hour or credit-hour equivalent for nonresident students. Revenues generated from the technology fee shall be used to enhance instructional technology resources for students and faculty. The technology fee may apply to both college credit and college-preparatory instruction and shall not be included in any award under the Florida Bright Futures Scholarship Program. Fifty percent of technology fee revenues may be pledged by a 1community college board of trustees as a dedicated revenue source for the repayment of debt, including lease-purchase agreements, not to exceed the useful life of the asset being financed. Revenues generated from the technology fee may not be bonded.
(11)(a) Each 1community college board of trustees may establish a separate fee for capital improvements, technology enhancements, or equipping student buildings which may not exceed 10 percent of tuition for resident students or 10 percent of the sum of tuition and out-of-state fees for nonresident students. The fee for resident students shall be limited to an increase of $2 per credit hour over the prior year. Funds collected by 1community colleges through the fee may be bonded only as provided in this subsection for the purpose of financing or refinancing new construction and equipment, renovation, or remodeling of educational facilities. The fee shall be collected as a component part of the tuition and fees, paid into a separate account, and expended only to construct and equip, maintain, improve, or enhance the educational facilities of the 1community college. Projects funded through the use of the capital improvement fee shall meet the survey and construction requirements of chapter 1013. Pursuant to s. 216.0158, each 1community college shall identify each project, including maintenance projects, proposed to be funded in whole or in part by such fee.
(b) Capital improvement fee revenues may be pledged by a board of trustees as a dedicated revenue source to the repayment of debt, including lease-purchase agreements, with an overall term of not more than 7 years, including renewals, extensions, and refundings, and revenue bonds with a term not exceeding 20 annual maturities and not exceeding the useful life of the asset being financed, only for financing or refinancing of the new construction and equipment, renovation, or remodeling of educational facilities. Bonds authorized pursuant to this subsection shall be requested by the 1community college board of trustees and shall be issued by the Division of Bond Finance in compliance with s. 11(d), Art. VII of the State Constitution and the State Bond Act. The Division of Bond Finance may pledge fees collected by one or more 1community colleges to secure such bonds. Any project included in the approved educational plant survey pursuant to chapter 1013 is approved pursuant to s. 11(f), Art. VII of the State Constitution.
(c) Bonds issued pursuant to this subsection may be validated in the manner provided by chapter 75. Only the initial series of bonds is required to be validated. The complaint for such validation shall be filed in the circuit court of the county where the seat of state government is situated, the notice required to be published by s. 75.06 shall be published only in the county where the complaint is filed, and the complaint and order of the circuit court shall be served only on the state attorney of the circuit in which the action is pending.
(d) A maximum of 15 percent may be allocated from the capital improvement fee for child care centers conducted by the 1community college. The use of capital improvement fees for such purpose shall be subordinate to the payment of any bonds secured by the fees.
(e) The state does hereby covenant with the holders of the bonds issued under this subsection that it will not take any action that will materially and adversely affect the rights of such holders so long as the bonds authorized by this subsection are outstanding.
(12)(a) In addition to tuition, out-of-state, financial aid, capital improvement, student activity and service, and technology fees authorized in this section, each 1community college board of trustees is authorized to establish fee schedules for the following user fees and fines: laboratory fees, which do not apply to a distance learning course; parking fees and fines; library fees and fines; fees and fines relating to facilities and equipment use or damage; access or identification card fees; duplicating, photocopying, binding, or microfilming fees; standardized testing fees; diploma replacement fees; transcript fees; application fees; graduation fees; and late fees related to registration and payment. Such user fees and fines shall not exceed the cost of the services provided and shall only be charged to persons receiving the service. A 1community college may not charge any fee except as authorized by law. Parking fee revenues may be pledged by a 1community college board of trustees as a dedicated revenue source for the repayment of debt, including lease-purchase agreements, with an overall term of not more than 7 years, including renewals, extensions, and refundings, and revenue bonds with a term not exceeding 20 years and not exceeding the useful life of the asset being financed. 1Community colleges shall use the services of the Division of Bond Finance of the State Board of Administration to issue any revenue bonds authorized by this subsection. Any such bonds issued by the Division of Bond Finance shall be in compliance with the provisions of the State Bond Act. Bonds issued pursuant to the State Bond Act may be validated in the manner established in chapter 75. The complaint for such validation shall be filed in the circuit court of the county where the seat of state government is situated, the notice required to be published by s. 75.06 shall be published only in the county where the complaint is filed, and the complaint and order of the circuit court shall be served only on the state attorney of the circuit in which the action is pending.
(b) The State Board of Education may adopt rules pursuant to ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54 to administer this subsection.
(13) The State Board of Education shall specify, as necessary, by rule, approved methods of student fee payment. Such methods shall include, but not be limited to, student fee payment; payment through federal, state, or institutional financial aid; and employer fee payments.
(14) Each 1community college board of trustees shall report only those students who have actually enrolled in instruction provided or supervised by instructional personnel under contract with the 1community college in calculations of actual full-time equivalent enrollments for state funding purposes. No student who has been exempted from taking a course or who has been granted academic or career credit through means other than actual coursework completed at the granting institution shall be calculated for enrollment in the course from which he or she has been exempted or granted credit. 1Community colleges that report enrollments in violation of this subsection shall be penalized at a rate equal to two times the value of such enrollments. Such penalty shall be charged against the following year’s allocation from the 1Community College Program Fund and shall revert to the General Revenue Fund.
(15) Each 1community college may assess a service charge for the payment of tuition and fees in installments and a convenience fee for the processing of automated or online credit card payments. However, the amount of the convenience fee may not exceed the total cost charged by the credit card company to the 1community college. Such service charge or convenience fee must be approved by the 1community college board of trustees.
(16)(a) Each 1community college may assess a student who enrolls in a course listed in the Florida Higher Education Distance Learning Catalog, established pursuant to s. 1004.09, a per-credit-hour distance learning course user fee. For purposes of assessing this fee, a distance learning course is a course in which at least 80 percent of the direct instruction of the course is delivered using some form of technology when the student and instructor are separated by time or space, or both.
(b) The amount of the distance learning course user fee may not exceed the additional costs of the services provided which are attributable to the development and delivery of the distance learning course. If a 1community college assesses the distance learning course user fee, the institution may not assess any other fees to cover the additional costs. By September 1 of each year, each board of trustees shall report to the Division of Florida Colleges the total amount of revenue generated by the distance learning course user fee for the prior fiscal year and how the revenue was expended.
(c) The link for the catalog must be prominently displayed within the advising and distance learning sections of the institution’s website, using a graphic and description provided by the Florida Distance Learning Consortium, to inform students of the catalog.
(17) The State Board of Education shall adopt a rule specifying the definitions and procedures to be used in the calculation of the percentage of cost paid by students. The rule must provide for the calculation of the full cost of educational programs based on the allocation of all funds provided through the general current fund to programs of instruction, and other activities as provided in the annual expenditure analysis. The rule shall be developed in consultation with the Legislature.
History.—s. 402, ch. 2002-387; s. 6, ch. 2004-271; s. 117, ch. 2004-357; s. 1, ch. 2005-247; s. 8, ch. 2007-246; s. 3, ch. 2007-329; ss. 3, 4, ch. 2008-109; s. 3, ch. 2008-148; s. 4, ch. 2008-163; s. 8, ch. 2009-60; s. 2, ch. 2009-92; s. 13, ch. 2009-228; s. 4, ch. 2010-219.
1Note.—Section 21, ch. 2010-70, directs the Division of Statutory Revision to prepare a reviser’s bill to substitute the term “Florida College System institution” for the terms “Florida college,” “community college,” and “junior college” where those terms appear in the Florida K-20 Education Code.