​The CSU received good news on January 7 when Governor Jerry Brown unveiled his 2016-17 budget proposal. The budget proposal included $140.4 million in new funding for the CSU - $15 million more than what the Governor’s administration had scheduled for 2016-17 in the Governor’s multi-year funding plan. In addition, the Governor has designated one-time funding of $35 million to address the CSU’s most urgent facility maintenance and infrastructure needs. This new revenue will fund a 1 percent enrollment growth and enable the university to address basic mandatory costs. However, this amount is $101.3 million below the Support Budget Request approved by the CSU Board of Trustees in November 2015 which represents the CSU’s real expenditure and revenue needs.

“The governor’s budget proposal affirms his commitment to invest in the California State University and acknowledges the university’s vital role as an economic driver and the state’s largest producer of bachelor’s degrees. An investment in the CSU serves the public good by enabling the university to provide quality degree programs and social mobility to the students of California who are among the most ethnically and economically diverse in the nation” said Chancellor Timothy P. White.

While the proposed allocation is an increase over the previous year, it does not meet enrollment demand or adequately fund the university’s critical needs. In November, the CSU Board of Trustees approved a support budget plan requesting $297.6 million. The Trustees’ plan allows for 3 percent enrollment growth - roughly 12,600 more students. If fully funded, the Support Budget Request will direct $50 million to the services and programs that increase graduation rates and will commit $25 million annually for debt service to tackle hundreds of millions of dollars of critical infrastructure projects throughout the 23-campus system.

The university’s four- and six-year graduation rates are at a 10-year high, and will continue to improve with efforts focused on increasing graduation rates by 2025. Our investment in current and new faculty and staff, practices that highly impact student success and increasing online education opportunities are paying off. With continued state support, the CSU will remain on track to bolster graduation rates and to graduate an additional 100,000 students over the next decade.

In May, the Governor will issue his May Revision to the budget. In the meantime, CSU leaders, students, and stakeholders will work with the Governor and state legislative leaders to advocate for increased funding for the CSU to ensure that the university has the resources needed to continue to provide affordable, high-quality degrees to California students.

Chancellor White will be providing details of the CSU’s needs and goals during his State of the CSU address Tuesday, January 26 at the Board of Trustees’ meeting in Long Beach, CA.