CSU budget looks to state to restore additional funding

Ron Rokhy

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CSU’s 2012-13 budget asks the state legislature to restore $333 million in additional funding for the 23-campus system.

The board of trustees unanimously approved the budget after voting 9 to 6 to raise Fall 2012 tuition by 9 percent.

The newly affirmed budget requests $397 million, but CSU plans to earn $64 million of that in revenue from a 5 percent enrollment boost, according to CSU’s website.

“I anticipate CSU is asking for money due to the several budget cuts they were hit with over the last few years,” said H.D. Palmer, deputy director of California’s Department of Finance. “We won’t know if the request will be granted until the Governor enacts the new budget in January.”

Over the last four years, CSU has faced dramatic budget cuts and has not been able to keep up with the pace, said CSU’s website.

In 2011, the system sustained $650 million in cuts and, to combat the loss, CSU raised tuition from $4,440 to $5,472. The increase was only able to raise $300 million from the increases, according to the website.

CSU is also threatened with the possibility of a $100 million trigger cut in January, Palmer said.

“Both the Legislative Analyst’s Office and the department of finance will have a budget forecast in by December 15th,” Palmer said. “The higher of the two forecasts will be used to determine whether or not CSU will face another cut. If the forecast is $1-2 billion lower than expected, the trigger cuts will take affect.”

Palmer said while the department of finance hasn’t yet submitted their forecast, the Legislative Analyst’s Office has and they anticipate the budget to be $3-4 billion less than expected.

“Things aren’t looking good for the state’s budget,” said Liz Chapin, spokesperson for the CSU. “If the state doesn’t meet its projected revenue, the $100 trigger cut will happen.”

Starting in Fall 2012, CSU will raise the price of tuition by $498 per year, bringing the total to $5,970 for full-time undergraduate students.

About $15 billion was cut from California, $1.375 billion being from the CSU and UC systems, according to the 2011-2012 budget. The upcoming budget faces a similar cut.

“The Legislative Analyst’s Office just came out last week and said the new budget is going to have a $13 billion cut,” Palmer said.

Anytime the CSU is faced with budget cut, they have to raise tuition or cut from the school’s budget, Chapin said.

“And right now, tuition is being raised because we’ve been cut a substantial amount we’re anticipating the trigger cuts,” she added.