Senator introduces oil severance bill to fund higher ed

Proposed Oil Severance Bill

Last week Senator Noreen Evans (D-Santa Rosa) announced the introduction of Senate Bill  (SB) 241, a bill that would fund California’s higher education systems and State Parks through a severance tax imposed on oil producers in California.

Evans said the tax would raise an estimated $2 billion annually, 93 percent of which would be steered toward public colleges and universities and the rest used to help shore up the state’s beleaguered parks system.

Learn more about SB 241.

“CFA appreciates Senator Evans’ recognition of the dramatic cuts that have greatly impacted our institutions of public higher education, students, and faculty. CFA has supported an oil severance tax in the past and applauds Senator Evans’ effort to reinvest in the California State University system (CSU),” said CFA President Lillian Taiz, a professor of history at Cal State Los Angeles.

She continued, “Together with Governor Brown’s latest budget proposal to increase funding for the CSU, this is another positive step towards enabling our universities to develop and expand California’s human and economic capabilities as intended.”

In 2009 CFA supported a similar effort led by then-Assemblymember Alberto Torrico, aimed at getting oil companies to pay their fair share. That bill was eventually defeated in committee following heavy lobbying from California’s oil industry.