SF State News {University Communications}

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State budget increases funding to CSU

Note: the following e-mail was sent on 10/8/10 to all faculty and staff.


Dear colleague:


The much-anticipated passage of the California state budget today is good news for SF State. With a combination of recurring and federal stimulus funds, the budget represents an increase of $365.6 million over last year for the California State University system, and nearly $90 million in capital outlay projects that include $3 million to equip the J. Paul Leonard Library.

We can all appreciate this strong show of support for higher education, an increase that begins to stem the downward spiral in state funding.  California's lawmakers heard loud and clear that investing in the state's students is an investment in the state's future. CSU graduates will be key to making California whole again. 


This--the first increase in CSU's budget since 2007--is an essential first step toward making the system whole again, as well.  I stress that it is a first step.  As good as this budget is, it does not address systemic underfunding for the system, which translates into a roughly $18 million shortfall for our campus alone.


Chancellor Reed led the budget advocacy charge with courage and conviction, and I am sure you share with me a deep sense of gratitude for the results he achieved.
I believe our campus played a major leadership role in making the case for the CSU to the governor and legislature. Our Education Budget Advocacy Committee (EBAC)—and the many faculty, staff and students who worked with EBAC—carried highly effective, coordinated messages about higher education to California's lawmakers. EBAC is a powerful example of how faculty, staff, administration, students and labor unions can work together to effect positive change. 


We owe a debt of gratitude to Academic Senate Chair Shawn Whalen, California Faculty Association Chapter President Ramon Castellblanch, and Associated Students, Inc.'s Vice President for External Affairs Travis Northup, for their leadership roles on EBAC. 
In addition to the EBAC efforts, SF State's associate director of government relations, Derek Aitken, led the CSU system's statewide e-advocacy efforts, helping tremendously to make the case for support of higher education.


Details on this budget breakthrough are provided in the message below from the CSU. We will not know the specifics regarding SF State's allocation until early next week, when the system presidents meet with the chancellor. But I can assure you of two important facts known at this time: our campus will be able to manage with this budget and avoid permanent staff or tenure/tenure-track layoffs; and pension reforms enacted to balance this budget do not apply to currently employed faculty and staff. As we learn more about the specifics of SF State's allocation, I will share the information with you.


Robert A. Corrigan, president

Employee Update from the Chancellor's Office:  Legislature Approves Budget that Restores $199 Million to CSU

After a marathon session, state lawmakers today approved a 2010-2011 budget that restores $199 million to the California State University and provides an additional $60.6 million for enrollment growth.
The $87.5 billion state budget, which closes a $17.9 billion gap, now goes to the governor for his signature.


The $199 million restoration to the CSU serves to back-fill part of a “one-time cut” of $305 million made to the university’s 2009-10 general fund base. The additional $60.6 million will fund enrollment growth across the 23-campus system.  The CSU has been forced to reduce enrollment by approximately 40,000 students since 2008 due to severe budget cuts.  The CSU recently announced it would admit up to 30,000 new students for the winter and spring 2011 terms and this additional support will be used to fund that enrollment growth.


The CSU will also receive $106 million in one-time federal stimulus funding which will be used to help the CSU meet its payroll. In turn, the CSU will use monies from state support and student fee revenues previously set aside for payroll to admit new students and restore courses that were previously cut due to budget reductions.


The final budget will increase the CSU's General Fund support to $2.62 billion from $2.35 billion (in 2009-2010), marking the first restoration of state funding to the CSU since 2007. 
The state budget also includes pension reform that will affect state employees, including CSU employees, who are hired beginning in November 2010, but does not apply to current employees.


The changes – which roll back pension benefits to levels that existed prior to the adoption of Senate Bill 400, end pension “spiking” and increase transparency – would impact future CSU employees, as well as other state employees. Details of how future employees will be impacted will be communicated once the CSU receives more information from the state.


"We thank the Governor and the legislature for their commitment to reinvest in higher education, and appreciate the increase in state funding support for the CSU," said CSU Chancellor Charles B. Reed.  "Like the rest of California, the last two years have been extremely challenging for us, but our mission is to educate the future workforce of California, and despite these ongoing challenges the CSU will continue to provide both access and service to students."


Last year's level of state support was the lowest for the CSU since 1999-2000 ($2.25 billion), and although the CSU will see an increase in state funding, the level of support is still at approximately 2005-2006 levels ($2.62 billion).  Despite receiving an increase over the previous year's level of state support, the CSU still faces fiscal obligations including mandatory cost increases such as health care benefits and energy that the general fund increase will not cover.  


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