of Bill :
Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick, enacts as follows:
1 The following definitions apply to this Act.
"community college" means a campus of the New Brunswick Community College established under section 3 of the Adult Education and Training Act. (collège communautaire)
"educational access funding" means the federal funds allocated to New Brunswick in the 2005-2006 federal budget for the expressed purpose of improving educational access for university and community college students in the 2005-2006 fiscal year. (financement pour l'accès à l'éducation)
"Minister" means the Minister of Finance. (ministre)
"tuition fees" means fees paid by an individual to a university or community college for academic instruction. (frais de scolarité)
"university" means a publicly funded New Brunswick university as defined by section 1 of the Higher Education Foundation Act. (université)
Principle of Access
2 The Government of New Brunswick is committed to ensuring access to public universities and community colleges by reducing tuition fees for the first year of study.
3 Educational access funding shall provide universities and community colleges with the financial means to reduce tuition fees in the first year of study without sacrificing educational quality.
4(1) Educational access funding will be allocated annually between universities and community colleges collectively.
4(2) For the purposes of subsection (1), the portion of educational access funding for universities and community colleges shall be determined on the basis of the ratio of their total student enrolment to the sum of student enrolment for the first year of study for all universities and community colleges.
4(3) The Minister shall create a fund each academic year comprised of two-thirds of the educational access funding received in the given year.
4(4) The Minister shall determine student enrolment by adopting the final enrolment figure reported to the Maritime Provinces Higher Education Commission in the previous academic year by each university or community college in the first year of study.
4(5) The Minister shall distribute the portion of the educational access funding allocated under subsection (2) to all universities and community colleges on a per capita basis.
4(6) The Minister of Training and Employment Development shall ensure that funds allocated to community colleges reduce tuition fees only for programmes which are part of the regular academic offerings of the community college.
5 The Government of New Brunswick shall not reduce the amount paid collectively to universities or community colleges for the administration or promotion of this fund.
Reporting and Accountability
6(1) Any university receiving funds under this Act shall file a written report to the Minister no later than December 31 of each fiscal year satisfying the Minister that they have reduced tuition fees for the first year of study by an amount proportionate to the funds received, taking into account tuition fee increases that could have reasonably been expected in a given academic year.
6(2) The Minister of Training and Employment Development shall
(a) account for funds received in the annual report of that Department; and
(b) not approve any tuition fee increase at a community college during the years in which educational access funds are received by an amount which exceeds an amount twice the average increase over the three preceding academic years.