Governor Brown’s CSU fund falls short of expectations

By Danni Ybarra |Staff Writer|

20150115_164719California Gov. Jerry Brown’s new budget proposal calls for an increase in higher education funding for the fourth consecutive year.

Many hope the budget would hold to its current $142.2 million increase rate, however that was not the case.

Instead the California State University (CSU) system will be receiving a $119.5 million increase from last year, according to the Los Angeles Times.

The proposed budget falls in line with the governor’s multi-year stable funding plan for higher education, which seeks to provide “a 20‑percent increase in General Fund appropriations over a four‑year period (2013‑14 through 2016‑17)” as stated directly from the budget details.

According to a Jan. 9, 2015 presentation from CSUSB’s University Budget Advisory Council, the current base increase stands at $10.1 million, but did not show the 2015/2016 prospective budget.

The Coyote Chronicle reached out to contact university officials about next year’s budget, but was not able to talk to anyone.

According to the Los Angeles Times, the new budget for 2015-2016 falls about $97.1 million short of what was requested by CSU system trustees.

According to the budget, the current increase will put a stop to tuition hikes for CSUs for the time being. However, as CSUSB anthropology professor, Christine Dias pointed out, it “unfortunately is not going to reduce [current] tuition.”

Along with the stable tuition, the campus will be able to use the additional funds to enroll more students.
However, though this contrasts directly with the budget’s goal, which states, “the budget provides increases in funding with a focus on results, rather than funding enrollment growth.”

Nonetheless, the Press Telegram reports that about 22,000 eligible applicants were turned down in 2012 due to lack of funding.

Next year, CSUs are expected to increase enrollment by roughly 3,500 students across the campuses (as opposed to the 12,000 they hoped for).

To accommodate the increase in students, more professors are hoped to be hired, according to the Los Angeles Times.

It is not certain how each CSU will use the extra money, but the Los Angeles Times reports that the budget does not allow student success because it is no where near the amount needed to cover technological upgrades along with maintenance and repairs for each campus, which is estimated to be around $1.8 billion.

Here at CSUSB, some professors agree the money should go towards students.

“It should be spent to benefit the students, because it’s about the students!” said Dias.

CSUSB kinesiology professor, Tori Beaudette, would like to see it go towards things where students can apply their knowledge, such as labs.

“I like being able to have the equipment that is appropriate to teach [students] the tools they need to take the education they are getting and then apply it outside of here,” said Beaudette.

While the state also has other financial options available for students, such as Cal-Grants and Middle-Class Scholarships (awarded to those who live in a household of $150,000 or less in combined annual income), according to graduate student Jennifer Lavigue, some students still cannot help but feel neglected.

“I don’t think our country appreciates enough that investing in our future in education pays us back,” said Lavigue.



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