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What Brown’s budget proposal means for UC

Governor Brown released his 2013-14 budget proposal yesterday. He is proposing increasing state general fund money to UC from $2.504 billion in the 2011-12 year to $2.567 billion in 2012-13, and $2.846 billion in 2013-14. UC is one of the few areas of the state budget to see a funding increase in the budget proposal. However, note that state funding of UC topped out at $3.323 billion in 2001-02 without adjusting for inflation and when student enrollment was about three quarters what it is now.

Brown is proposing a 5% state funding increase in 2013-14 and 5% the following year, then 4% increases each of the next two years. In exchange for this steady increase in funding, Brown expects UC to freeze fees at the current level for the next four years. He also wants UC to improve outcomes and reduce costs. The Governor’s proposed budget does not include enrollment targets (the university is anticipating a modest enrollment growth of 1%). $10 million of this state funding is earmarked for online education.

The Governor is also proposing to limit the number of course units the state would subsidize for each student. For the first two years, the limit would be 150 percent of degree requirements (180 units for a standard bachelor’s degree), but then ramping down to one extra year of full-time attendance.

As in last year’s proposal, the Governor is planning the controversial shift of general obligation bond debt service into UC’s budget. This time there is language that specifies money saved through this effort is to be used for UC’s educational mission.

The Higher Education pages of Brown’s budget proposal are at: http://www.ebudget.ca.gov/pdf/BudgetSummary/HigherEducation.pdf

UC’s response to the budget proposal: http://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/news/article/28917

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