By Tony Romeo

HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) – The chancellor of West Chester, Cheyney and Pennsylvania’s 12 other state-owned universities says cuts in state funding are threatening the system’s mission of providing an affordable college education.

Like the leaders of state-related universities Temple, Pitt and Penn State, John Cavanaugh, chancellor of the state-owned university system, told a budget hearing that another proposed round of steep cuts in state funds would hit lower income families the hardest.

“It still puts a lot of pressure on students of modest financial background — and that is the bulk of our student population.”

Cavanaugh says the average family income of state system students is still below $60,000. Lawmakers have indicated they will attempt to restore some or all of the proposed cuts to higher education.

Meanwhile, the head of PHEAA, the state student aid agency, told lawmakers that cuts to his agency will likely mean the average grant will be reduced by $158 dollars, to $2,666 dollars.