Gov. Brown proposes flat budget for CSU system

By Courtney Sims |Staff Writer|

Gov. Jerry Brown’s new budget proposal for the California State University (CSU) system will affect all 23 of the CSU campuses.

State funding allocated for the CSU system for the 2012-2013 academic school year will only be $2 billion, the lowest it’s been since 1997-1998.

Over the past two years the state’s budget has called for over $750 million in cuts to the CSU system, affecting students, parents and the CSU staff.

Although this proposal for the new tax hike will not be on the ballot until November, it has university administrators and students planning for the future.

“This problem is not really all that complex. It’s just like a personal budget, you have to save. By not spending our schools baseline budget we are able to put more money into the reserve budget in case the proposal fails,” said CSUSB President Dr. Albert K. Karnig.

If the tax proposal fails Gov. Brown said he will be forced to make an additional $200 million in cuts to the CSU and UC systems providing only $1.8 million for the campuses.

Sid Robinson, the associate vice president of University Affairs, has a simple solution for the pending budget proposal, “Plan for the worst and hope for the best.”

In the past year tuition has not only increased by 20 percent, but school fees have made it that much harder for students to afford the quality education they expect.

“My education experience at CSUSB has already been affected by the budget cuts. Since deciding to complete my undergrad degree in 2009 I have had to adapt to higher tuition cost, furloughs days and parking service fees,” said student Renee Barlin.

California is perhaps one of the only states that provide a low-cost and high-quality education for any person that is willing to put in the time and effort and in return the state gains a bigger profit.

For every dollar that is invested in a student that attends a CSU, “economists found that the state receives $4.41 in return,” as reported in the LA Times.

Optimistic students see the measure as a means to help encourage them to finish their education and are not upset over the flat budget proposal.

“If this is what it takes for me to get my degree, then so be it,” said student Stephanie Barrera. “This will just make me work harder and be smarter,” she continued.

Students at UC’s are also being affected by the cuts and have come together and formed a group called FixUC.

The group consisting of students, said they created what’s called the UC Investment Proposal, which proposes a more efficient way to cut upfront tuition costs.

According to The Press-Enterprise, students like Chris LoCascio propose that graduate students contribute 5 percent of their annual income to pay back to the university over a period of 20 years.

“The idea of that student proposal is really appealing, but students might be skeptical about paying tuition for 20 years,” said student Samantha McClanhan.

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