UC says Gov. Brown’s 3 percent education budget boost not enough

Kevin Cheung/Staff

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Gov. Jerry Brown released his proposal for the 2018 California state budget plan Wednesday, but the UC Office of the President, or UCOP, reported in a press release the same day that the 3 percent increase in the education budget is less than expected.

The proposal budgets $15.45 billion for higher education from the state’s General Fund — this is a 3 percent increase from the $14.968 billion that was allocated toward higher education last year. The UCOP statement also mentions that the 3 percent increase is less than what the governor and university had agreed upon and that the increase is allocated to the core educational budget.

“This 3 percent increase … is less than we anticipated under the framework we established with the governor,” the press release said.

According to the statement, the university was expecting “ongoing (and) predictable” funding in order to “maintain UC quality and access while requiring the university to lower its cost structure.”

The university will remain focused on completing the commitments made in the aforementioned framework by spring 2018, according to the press release. The statement also alludes to a university strategy to complete the final step, related to transfer-student enrollment.

“The governor’s budget plan does not include funding for UC enrollment growth,” the press release said. “The university is committed to adding an additional 2,000 California undergraduates in fall 2018, including 1,500 that it will fund from its own resources.”

Additionally, the statement said the university hopes to add 500 graduate students in the upcoming year.

The statement indicated that the university remains optimistic. It hopes “to continue conversations with the governor and the Legislature to ensure expanded access for fall 2018 and to restore the university to the funding envisioned in the framework,” according to the statement.

Contact Rishabh Nijhawan at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter at @realRishNij.