Democrat Andrea Dalessandro is facing Republicans Frank Antenori and David Gowan in the race for two House of Represseats in Legislative District 30. We asked her some questions about higher education.
Should the state provide more funding for universities?
Yes, for public universities.
Should the Board of Regents increase tuition for in-state students?
I really think that’s a violation of the Arizona Constitution. Our constitution says that higher education should be as near free as possible. I grew up in a family with very modest means, but because of affordable higher education, I was able to go to college and become a math teacher in my first career. So, I think that if we want a better educated workforce, we have to support the students and not raise tuition.
Should the Board of Regents increase tuition for out-of-state students?
That’s OK with me. While it’s good to have diversity, taxpayers within the state are supporting the universities.
Should tuition money be used to provide financial aid for low-income students?
Yes, that’s fine. I don’t think the source is as important as low-income students that are qualified to go to college, have the opportunity to.
Was it a good idea for the Legislature to allow the Board of Regents to borrow more than a billion dollar for capital projects, with the expectation that the bonds could be paid back through lottery proceeds?
I don’t know about the lottery part, but I definitely support the economic growth that the buildings would bring to the community, especially in a downturn time like this. They are not building houses, so a lot of these craftspeople can be working on the universities.