Headline

Pressure continues to fund the CSU; next up CFA Lobby Days & The May Revise

The 1,000 California State University students, faculty and supporters who rallied for the CSU at the State Capitol last week generated a significant amount of energy and support for the CSU.

As reported in the April 6 CFA Headlines, Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon and Senate pro Tem Toni Atkins, the CSU Chancellor and two CSU Trustees as well as faculty and students from campuses all over California called on Governor Jerry Brown to step up funding for the CSU in his proposed 2018-19 State Budget.

“We got the support of the top leaders of both houses of the state legislature. These are the people who will participate in the tough end-game negotiations in June over how much state funding will go to the CSU,” said Lillian Taiz, CFA Political Action and Legislation Committee Chair. “They get it. They want to reinvest in the CSU and that is essential.”

Other elected officials who spoke April 4 include Assembly members Jose Medina, Sharon Quirk-Silva, and Tony Thurmond.

Numerous April 4 rally speakers pointed out that in a moment when there is an enormous state surplus—roughly $7 billion above the required contributions to the state’s “rainy day” emergency fund—making an investment in California’s future through public higher education is a sensible idea.

WHAT’S NEXT

The governor’s next public action will be May 14 when he releases his May Revise—adjustments to his state spending proposal based on tax receipts and a new understanding of Californian’s priorities.

“Our job between now and May 14 is to speak out everywhere we can about the need for increased CSU funding, and to visit our elected state legislators to make sure we have their support when the time comes to vote on the state budget,” explains Taiz.

The legislature will hold more public hearings on the proposed budget, and supporters of the CSU will be able to visit legislators in their home district offices as well as during CFA Lobby Days in Sacramento, on April 30 and May 1. Faculty should contact your campus CFA Chapter to learn more, and watch for more information from CFA in the coming weeks.

TRUSTEES & TUITION

Meantime, just one day after the Governor releases his May Revise, the CSU Board of Trustees is scheduled to meet, and they could be voting on a controversial tuition increase. In January, on the Chancellor’s recommendation, the Trustees put off a vote on tuition to “no sooner” than their May 15-16 meeting.

Some Trustees, including Lateefah Simon who addressed the April 4 Rally, have questioned the wisdom of a tuition hike this year. Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, an ex-officio CSU Trustee, has pointed out it is unwise to adopt a tuition hike before state funding is known. Yet, there are those who may call for a vote in May. Most CSU campuses will be in finals when the Trustees meet.

PHOTO: Students, along with faculty and supporters, rallied and marched at the State Capitol on April 4. Photo by Michael Henderson, faculty at CSU San Marcos. See his image gallery of the day.

See the #FreeTheCSU Photo Gallery of images. See video by the Sol Collective featuring a speech at the April 4 Rally by Margarita Berta-Ávila, CFA Capitol Chapter President.

Find news reports at CFA in the News.   #FreeTheCSU   #FundTheDream

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