BOISE, Idaho (AP) — An Idaho Senate panel has introduced legislation that would freeze college and university tuition for incoming freshman so they would pay the same rate for at least four academic years.

Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter's office unveiled the plan to the Senate Education Committee on Tuesday. The bill would guarantee fixed-tuition for full-time undergraduate students and would not apply to room and board. Otter first announced his wish for the new initiative during his annual address to state lawmakers in January.

Marilyn Whitney, the governor's education liaison, says the bill helps meet the need of the student who doesn't qualify for financial help or academic merit scholarships. According to the bill, the initiative will cost the state roughly $8.1 million a year.