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CSU System Weighs Tuition Hikes Amid Budget Crisis

Documents posted online show that University of California students could see their tuition raised by six percent this fall while a CSU committee freezes public funding of new college presidents' compensation.

The salaries of new would be frozen at the level of their predecessors under a policy approved by a CSU Board of Trustees committee Tuesday, but private foundations would be permitted to raise funds on their own to increase the compensation by up to 10 percent.

At the same time,  documents posted online ahead of next week's UC Board of Regents meeting  show that UC students in the 10-campus system could see their tuiton raised by 6 percent this fall if the state doesn't increase funding by $125 million for 2012-13, according to a report by the Associated Press.

“We’re at a critical stage at the university. The regents would face more draconian choices if the governor’s initiative fails,” Patrick Lenz, vice president for budget and capital resources, told The Associated Press in an interview.

UC Board members are scheduled to meet and discuss ways to raise revenue and cut costs when they meet in Sacramento on May 16. However, no action on tuition changes is anticipated until July.

During Tuesday's CSU Board of Trustees committee meeting, salary was approved unanimously by the board's Special Committee on Presidential Selection and Compensation Policy, despite protests being staged outside the meeting by students, teachers and others who said all money -- even private dollars -- should be used to reduce tuition or increase teacher salaries, not paying executives.

The full board will consider the proposal tomorrow. During the committee meeting, members insisted that they were freezing presidential salaries, since no additional tax money would be put toward compensation. Donations from private foundations to supplement salaries would be voluntary and decided upon at the campus-level, and there was no guarantee such supplements would be offered, committee members said.The policy indicates that such salary boosts offered by private foundations could be provided "to retain the best leader.''

Opponents, however, said the policy is just another way to bolster executives' salaries.``As I said last week when the chancellor proposed this new policy, it is nothing more than smoke and mirrors disguised as reform,'' said Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco. ``Today's action ... only further solidifies the fact that they are more committed to their executives than California students and families.''

Both the UC and California State University systems would each lose an additional $200 million if Governor Jerry Brown's tax initiative is not approved, according to the San Franciso Chronicle.

-City  News Service and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

The Beast ! May 09, 2012 at 08:48 AM
Jerry Brown is a IDIOT !
John B. Greet May 09, 2012 at 06:38 PM
Our state is broke and cannot afford to increase funding for anything. If the taxpayer-subsidized cost of a CSU education has become too great for some students then I suppose they should just resolve themselves to a less-expensive community college education for their first couple of years. During that time they can also work and save money toward their undergraduate degree later on. Again, our state is broke. Taxpayers in CA already pay among the highest cumulative taxes in the nation (federal, state, and local.) It's long past time to end the tax-and-spend entitlement mentality that so many in CA have currently adopted. If the CSU system loses enough students due to the rising costs (which will only drive the costs up further still, further burdening the taxpayers) then the CSU system will have *no choice* but to find ways to cut those costs further or close up shop altogether.
Nancy Wride (Editor) May 09, 2012 at 07:27 PM
My family has several company presidents who went to community college for that very reason the first two years. School teachers, journalists, too. But the larger question of what we are doing with education on all levels, our comparative investment, our results, looms still, doesn't it?
John B. Greet May 10, 2012 at 12:10 AM
It does. I have been advocating for a change in our public education paradigm for a very long time now. I'm usually just as loudly shouted down as somehow "anti-teacher."
Milan Moravec May 10, 2012 at 04:26 AM
University of California tuition blocks the middle class. University of California Berkeley Chancellor makes Cal. farther and farther out of reach for the sons and daughters of Californians. UCB Chancellor Robert J Birgeneau is outspoken on why elite public universities, like Cal, should charge Californians more. With Birgeneau’s leadership UCB is more expensive (on an all-in-cost) than private Harvard and Yale. Chancellor Birgeneau’s ‘charge more’ tuition make Cal. the most expensive public higher education in our country! As a public university UCB is to maximize access to the widest number of instate students at a reasonable cost with a mission of diversity and equality of opportunity. Unfortunately Birgeneau’s ‘charge more’ tuition to Californians diminishes the equality and inclusion principles which underlie our state and country. Birgeneau’s and Provost George Breslauer’s ($306,000 salary) ‘charge more’ instate tuition denies middle income Californians the transformative value of Cal’s education. Chancellor Birgeneau’s tenure is a sad unacceptable legacy. Opinion to: UC Board of Regents marsha.kelman@ucop.edu and Calif. State Senators and Assembly members.

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