By Aimee Villalpando |Staff Writer|
Governor Brown’s annual May revision of California’s state budget for 2013-2014 urges restraint on spending and proposes an additional $125.1 million for CSU’s, according to an article released by the CSU Chancellor’s Office.
“We’ve climbed out of the hole with a Prop. 30 tax,” said Brown. “That’s good, but this is not the time to break out the champagne,” Brown claimed during a news conference on the budget, according to Los Angeles Daily News.
In addition to the $125.1 million, Brown is pushing for reinstating the $125 million that was cut from last year’s budget.
According to the CSU Chancellor’s Office, the proposed increase would bring state funding levels up to $2.3 billion for support of university programs and operations.
“The funding proposed for public higher education in the Governor’s May Revise is a critical investment in the future of California,” said CSU Chancellor Timothy P. White.
“We look forward to working with the Governor and legislature to invest these educational resources while ensuring the accountability of our universities and the success of our students in a way that upholds the mission of the California State University.”
In March, CSU trustees looked over an expenditure plan based on the proposed funding and addressed three major areas of need: student access and success, faculty and staff compensation and mandatory costs.
The board of trustees intend to discuss additional details of this expenditure plan and the revised budget proposal at their upcoming board meeting this month.
Bob Blumenfield, chairman of the Assembly Budget Committee, was initially on board with the overall approach of Brown’s proposal, along with lawmakers from both political parties.
Blumenfield expressed concern on whether or not revenue projections from the state’s nonpartisan legislative analyst would match those from the Governor’s Office.
“All of us who lived through the painful cuts of the last years, we want to make sure we won’t make financial expectations that can’t be met over the long term,” said Blumenfield.
Blumenfield’s concerns were validated when the Legislative Analyst Office predicted California’s tax revenue would be $3.2 billion higher than what the governor’s revised budget proposed, according to the Sacramento Business Journal.
Criticism and approval has been expressed equally from both parties.
Republican Assembly Leader Connie Conway stated, “Governor Brown today put forward a revised state spending plan that I believe charts a realistic path forward in meeting the budget priorities of hard-working taxpayers.”
Some critics of Brown’s budget proposal claim he is underestimating recent gains in the stock market, to which Conway said, “Republicans share the Governor’s commitment to paying down state debt and holding the line on new spending.”
“We must resist the temptation to blow through the surplus using one-time money for ongoing programs and reverse the progress we’ve made in closing the deficit.”
The budget proposal is still in the process of being modified and will undergo many changes before being accepted or denied by the Assembly Budget Committee.
“We’re certainly going to evaluate the entirety of the proposal and, as usual, make substantive changes,” said Blumenfield.
Brown shows no indication of willingness to negotiate on the investment of the CSU system and in education for California.