Trustees adopt 2014/15 CSU funding request from the state

CFA President Lillian Taiz spoke before the Trustees’ Finance Committee meeting about their  2014/15 CSU funding request from the state.

She said, “The California Faculty Association stands in support of the CSU Administration’s request for more resources for the California State University system.”

At their meeting in September, the Trustees considered a funding increase request from the state of $250 million. While Gov. Jerry Brown has acknowledged the CSU needs a funding increase, he indicated the CSU Trustee’s intended request was too much. He has argued for a $142.2 milion increase.

Taiz said, “While we are mindful that the governor is prepared to increase funding over four years by 20% in the wake of the passage of Proposition 30, the truth is that even that investment leaves the system $100 million short of the state’s contribution to the CSU in 2010.”

Taiz also took on the argument that a switch to online classes would save the state and the CSU money. Referring to a series of papers from the Campaign for the Future of Higher Education (The Promises of Online Education: Costs), she said, “Experts in online instruction say that saving money is one of the worst reasons to expand online instruction. Campuses often encounter a raft of ‘financial gotchas,’ they caution, and ultimately find that online courses can actually cost more than traditional face-to face classes.”

She added, “As one observer put it, there are a lot of people selling ‘cyber pie in the sky’ but the truth for students, their parents, and our state is this—there is simply no substitute for public investment in higher education.”

After substantial discussion, the Trustees Finance Committee adopted a funding request for an increase of $237.6 million, which is 67% more than Gov. Brown’s number.

After the Dept. of Finance receives the request it will, with the governor, prepare a state budget plan including proposed funding to the CSU that the governor will present to the state legislature and the public by January 10.