Governor’s 2006-07 Budget Seeks to Raise Salaries, Ease Student Fees
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s proposed 2006-07 state budget would provide a second year of increased funding for the University of California after four years of cuts. The governor’s budget would fund enrollment growth at UC, use state funds to “buy out” most student fee increases, provide additional state funding for UC’s initiative to train more science and math teachers, and invest in UC health care to underserved regions of the state.
The UC section of the budget proposal, as detailed earlier this month for the fiscal year beginning July 1, would total $3.049 billion, an increase of $207 million or 7.3 percent above the 2005-06 level. It would support an average 4 percent rise in salaries for faculty and staff; it maintains the governor’s 2003 “compact” with UC, which spells out anticipated state funding levels and University accountability measures over a multi-year period.
“We are grateful to the governor for once again recognizing the vital contribution higher education makes to the well-being of the state,” said President Robert C. Dynes. “This budget will help us keep our doors open to the next entering class of students, continue rebuilding and improving programs that suffered from the budget cuts of the last few years, and provide access to the University for students from families of all financial means.”
The governor’s budget does not include funding for UC’s K-12 academic preparation programs or labor research programs. Dynes said he will actively seek restoration of this funding as the budget moves through the Legislature.
Key elements of the UC proposal are:
Faculty and staff compensation:
The proposed budget includes funding that, when combined with other
University revenue sources, will support an average 4 percent increase
in employee compensation in 2006-07, subject to collective bargaining
requirements. Salaries of UC faculty and staff now significantly
lag those at institutions against which UC competes.
Enrollment growth: Funds for another
5,279 full-time-equivalent students in 2006-07 are budgeted. This
will allow UC to meet its commitments under the Master Plan for
Higher Education to offer a place to all eligible undergraduates,
and to continue increasing graduate enrollments.
Student fees: The budget proposes
to use $75 million in state funding to “buy out” most student fee
increases at UC. The increases projected under the governor’s budget
would have been an 8 percent permanent increase in systemwide fees
for undergraduates, a 10 percent increase in systemwide fees for
graduate students, and 5-10 percent increases (dollar amounts varying
by school) for most professional school students.
A 5 percent nonresident tuition hike approved for undergraduates only would not be affected by the governor’s plan. Professional students would still see a one-year, $350 increase in the educational fee to help cover lost revenue associated with a lawsuit regarding professional fees. The Regents in July also approved increases in some professional school fees for 2005-06, but deferred a portion of those increases to 2006-07; students would still see those increases as well.
Science and math initiative: The
budget includes $375,000 in addition to the $750,000 in the 2005-06
budget for the “California Teach—One Thousand Teachers, One Million
Minds” program. UC has begun to dramatically expand the training
of high-quality science and mathematics teachers for California’s
Facilities and health initiatives:
In addition to the operating budget, the governor proposed $340
million in capital funding for UC facilities in 2006-07 to help
the University continue addressing enrollment growth, seismic, and
life safety needs.
The governor also proposed a major infrastructure program for the state of California that includes $345 million per year for UC’s facilities construction and renewal program over the next 10 years.