By Mariela Limon |Staff Writer|
Governor Jerry Brown’s newly released 2013-2014 state budget proposal gives back to higher education, including an extra $125.1 million for the California State University system.
If passed, the budget guarantees that the CSU system will receive a total of $2.2 billion in state funding.
According to the Governor’s Budget Summary, in order to improve student success, the funds will be directed towards, “…improvements in time-to-completion, improvements in graduation and completion rates in all segments, increases in transfer students enrolled at CSU and UC and successful credit and basic skills course completion.”
The proposal also caps the number of units a student who receives money from the state General Fund can take in order to shorten the amount of time it takes to earn a degree.
If a student exceeds the amount of capped units – 167 within the first two years – they will have to pay the full cost of instruction.
The additional $125.1 million would come after the state’s passing of Proposition 30, which increased sales tax and income taxes on those who make more than $250,000 per year.
“We appreciate the governor’s recognition that California will benefit from the investment of state funds into higher education,” said CSU Chancellor Timothy P. White, according to now.humboldt.edu.
In accordance to the budget, $10 million is designated to advance the use of technology for online alternatives for lower-division general education and highly demanded courses for the students’ benefit.
In the Budget Summary, “The proposal should obviate the need for CSU to increase student tuition and fees and can be used by the university to meet its most pressing needs.
This increase is in addition to the $125 million General Fund that CSU will receive in 2013-14 for not increasing tuition and fees in 2012-13, as required by the 2012 Budget Act.”
Chancellor White states, “It will allow the CSU to address the unprecedented demand for high quality education at our institutions, as well as areas of critical need.”
With budget cuts and tuition increases in the last four years, this news sits well with students at CSUSB.Although having online courses may benefit students, some think that most courses are better in a person-to-person setting.
“Some classes like chemistry should be taken on campus. You need someone to explain it in person,” said nursing student Leticia Orellana.
According to the Governor’s Budget Summary, “Priority will be given to the development of courses that can serve greater numbers of students while providing equal or better learning experiences.”
The proposal has been praised by the California Faculty Association.
“This budget proposal is the first step in restoring a prosperous future for California. We appreciate the governor’s commitment to public higher education and, in particular, to keeping the CSU affordable for our students,” said CFA President Lillian Taiz.
The California Republican Party was not as pleased with the proposal.
“What’s disappointing about Gov. Brown’s announcement is that job creation was never mentioned,” said CRP President Del Beccaro, “Cutting the regulatory burden was ignored.”
The budget will be reviewed again and voting will take place in July.