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February 13, 2020 - Presented to Senate Education Committee and Senate Budget Subcommittee No. 1
January 24, 2020 - State law authorizes the California Community Colleges (CCC) to award associate degrees, generally limiting the awarding of more advanced degrees to the state’s universities. As an exception to this rule, Chapter 747 of 2014 (SB 850, Block) authorized CCC to offer bachelor’s degrees on a pilot basis at up to 15 community colleges. Chapter 747 directed our office to conduct an interim evaluation of the pilot by July 1, 2018 and a final evaluation by July 1, 2022. This report reflects our final evaluation.
January 13, 2020 - This report presents our office’s initial assessment of the Governor’s budget. We estimate the Governor had a $6 billion surplus to allocate to discretionary purposes in 2020-21. The Governor allocates most of the surplus toward one-time purposes, including maintaining a positive year-end balance in the state’s discretionary reserve. Under the administration’s estimates, total reserves would reach $20.5 billion at the end of 2020-21—this represents a $1.7 billion increase from the 2019-20 enacted level. California continues to enjoy a healthy fiscal situation. Despite its positive near-term picture, the budget’s multiyear outlook is subject to considerable uncertainty. In addition to describing the condition of the budget under the Governor’s proposal, this report discusses tools the Legislature can use to mitigate against these heightened risks.
January 20, 2020: Upon further review, one item included in the original version of Appendix Figure 3 on discretionary on health spending should not have been included (specfically, use of the Medi-Cal drug rebate fund to offset General Fund costs). Removing this item—which reduces General Fund spending—from the list of discretionary choices made in the Governor’s budget increases our calculation of the surplus to $6 billion. The document is updated to reflect these changes.
Update 1/24/20: Adjusted Judicial Branch items in Appendix Figure 1 to reflect ongoing spending.
December 18, 2019 - California operates two public university systems: (1) the University of California (UC), consisting of 10 campuses, and (2) the California State University (CSU), consisting of 23 campuses. The Legislature faces many pressures to increase funding for UC and CSU in 2020‑21. This report examines these university cost pressures, assesses the state’s capacity to fund some of them, and identifies options for expanding budget capacity to fund additional cost pressures.
December 5, 2019 - Chapter 22 of 2015 (SB 81, Committee on Budget and Fiscal Review) created a Basic Skills Transformation Grant initiative to improve basic skills education at the community colleges. The legislation directed our office to submit an interim evaluation by December 1, 2019 and a final evaluation by December 1, 2021. This brief fulfills the interim reporting requirement.
November 21, 2019 - This post describes the key factors driving recent spending increases on Cal Grants, the state’s main form of student financial aid. It also discusses our Cal Grant spending estimates through 2023-24.
In addition to this report, you can find the main California's Fiscal Outlook report along with a collection of other fiscal outlook material on our fiscal outlook budget page.
October 17, 2019 - This post summarizes the state’s 2019-20 spending package for education programs. It is part of our Spending Plan series. The post describes changes in the Proposition 98 minimum guarantee and changes in overall Proposition 98 spending. The post also describes changes in spending for each education segment—from preschool through the universities. The post concludes with a section on crosscutting education initiatives.
May 30, 2019 - Presented to: Budget Conference Committee
May 30, 2019 - Presented to: Budget Conference Committee
May 28, 2019 - In this web post, we analyze the 2019-20 May Revision proposal to fund a new mandate relating to the Cal Grant program. We provide background on the mandate, discuss the Governor’s proposal, share our assessment, and provide an associated recommendation. This post fulfills a requirement for our office to analyze new mandates, as specified in Section 17562 of the Government Code.
May 15, 2019 - The May Revision contains more than 100 proposed changes to education programs. The changes range from large new policy proposals, to major modifications of January proposals, to small adjustments relating to revised student attendance estimates. In this post, we focus on the first two categories of proposals. The post has six sections. The first section provides an overview of the proposals. The next four sections cover specific proposals relating to (1) early education, (2) K-14 education, (3) the universities, and (4) financial aid. The last section covers library-related proposals and a crosscutting proposal relating to education innovation.
May 9, 2019 - To obtain a license to practice medicine, California law requires all medical school graduates to complete three years of postgraduate training. Most physician‑trainees fulfill this requirement by completing a residency program. The state currently funds two initiatives to support residency programs for primary care physicians. The first initiative is named after its legislative authors, Song‑Brown, and is administered by the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (OSHPD). The second initiative is authorized by Proposition 56 and is administered by the University of California (UC). The Governor proposes making certain limited‑term funding for these initiatives ongoing. In this brief, we provide background on residency programs, describe the Governor’s two associated budget proposals, assess those proposals, and make associated recommendations.
May 8, 2019 - In this post, we (1) provide background on immigrant residents in California and state funding for immigrant legal services, including for students and employees at the California Community Colleges (CCC), California State University (CSU), and University of California (UC); (2) describe the Governor’s proposals to provide funding for legal services at the three higher education segments; (3) provide an update on implementation of legal service programs at each segment; and (4) make recommendations on the Governor’s budget proposals.
May 6, 2019 - In this brief, we provide (1) background on the state’s education data systems and past efforts to connect them, (2) describe the Governor’s proposal to develop an integrated education data system, (3) assess the proposal, and (4) make associated recommendations.
May 2, 2019 - Presented to: Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Subcommittee No. 1 on Education