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The 2022-23 Budget: Overview of the Governor's Higher Education Budget Proposals


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The 2022-23 Budget: California State University

February 15, 2022 - This brief analyzes the Governor’s budget proposals for the California State University. The brief covers base support, enrollment, foster youth programs, deferred maintenance, and climate-related initiatives.

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[PDF] The 2022-23 Budget: Analysis of Major UC Proposals

February 2, 2022 - This brief analyzes the Governor’s major budget proposals for the University of California, with a focus on base support, enrollment, and deferred maintenance. Also, see our companion piece to this report: The 2022‑23 Budget: UC Climate-Related Proposals.

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[PDF] The 2015-16 Budget: Analysis of Higher Education May Revision Proposals

May 18, 2015 - In this brief, we analyze the Governor’s higher education May Revision proposals. In the first section, we provide an overview of funding for higher education. In the next three sections, we describe and assess the Governor’s major proposals for the University of California (UC), the California State University (CSU), and the Awards for Innovation program, respectively. We discuss proposals for the California Community Colleges (CCC) in our companion Proposition 98 budget brief. The Appendix to the brief contains seven figures that have detailed higher education budget data.

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[PDF] The 2012-13 Budget: Analysis of the Governor's Higher Education Proposal

February 8, 2012 - The Governor’s budget reduces funding for state financial aid programs by over $300 million. At the same time, it generally maintains or augments funding for the public colleges and universities in 2012-13; reduces budgetary controls on their spending; and commits to annual funding increases in subsequent years, contingent on their meeting undefined performance targets. Furthermore, higher education funding would be subject to “trigger cuts” if the Governor’s proposed tax increases are not approved by voters in November. This report makes a number of recommendations for legislative consideration, including alternative ways to reduce financial aid costs that would have better outcomes for students and the state. The report also urges caution in relaxing budgetary controls in higher education, and identifies alternative ways to structure trigger cuts in order to reduce uncertainty and disruption in higher education programs.

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[PDF] The 2013-14 Budget: Analysis of the Higher Education Budget

February 12, 2013 - In the 2013-14 Governor's Budget Summary, the Governor expresses major concerns about higher education in California. Most notably, the Governor is concerned about escalating higher education costs, funding models that promote neither efficiency nor effectiveness, and generally poor student outcomes. To address these issues, the Governor lays out a multiyear budget plan. The main component of the plan is large annual unallocated base increases for all three higher education segments. The Governor loosely links these base increases with an expectation the segments improve their performance. Although we believe the Governor’s budget plan has drawn attention to some notable problems, we have serious concerns with several of his specific budget proposals. By providing the segments with large unallocated increases only vaguely connected to undefined performance expectations, the Governor cedes substantial state responsibilities to the segments and takes key higher education decisions out of the Legislature’s control. We recommend the Legislature take a different approach and allocate any new funding first for the state’s highest existing education priorities, including debt service, pension costs, and paying down community college deferrals. If more funding is provided, then we recommend the Legislature link the additional funding with explicit enrollment and performance expectations.

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[PDF] The 2021-22 Budget: Analysis of the Major University Proposals

February 1, 2021 - This report analyzes the Governor’s major budget proposals for the universities, covering base funding, enrollment, students’ basic needs, faculty professional development, and deferred maintenance.

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[PDF] The 2014-15 Budget: Analysis of the Higher Education Budget

February 12, 2014 - This report analyzes the Governor’s 2014-15 higher education budget. We continue to have serious concerns with the Governor’s approach to funding the universities, particularly as it significantly diminishes the Legislature’s role in key budget decisions and allows the universities to pursue segmental over state interests. We recommend the Legislature take an alternative approach that: (1) designates funding for specific purposes (including enrollment at the California State University and debt-service payments), (2) shares cost increases among the state and students, and (3) monitors the universities’ performance in specific areas (such as student success). We think the Governor’s approach to funding the community colleges is much better but recommend various ways for the Legislature to refine specific community college proposals. Most notably, rather than augmenting a single student support categorical program by $200 million, we recommend the Legislature consolidate seven student support programs into a block grant, thereby offering colleges considerably more flexibility in deciding the best ways to support their students.

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The 2015-16 Budget: Higher Education Analysis

February 27, 2015 - In this report, we provide an overview of the Governor’s higher education budget. We then review the segments' performance in certain key areas and assess the degree to which the segments require enrollment growth funding, base funding increases, and facilities funding. We find the segments have improved performance in some areas but additional improvement is needed. We find little to warrant additional enrollment growth at UC and CSU, and available data indicate CCC likely will not use all the growth funding provided in 2014-15. We recommend against unallocated budget increases, instead recommending that the Legislature link base increases to a cost-of-living adjustment and any additional increases to specified state priorities. We review several facility proposals and make various related recommendations, including recommending the Legislature establish state facility priorities and require the segments to submit a report describing how they plan to eliminate their maintenance backlogs.

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A Primer: Funding Higher Education

June 30, 2005 - Where does the funding for higher education come from? How are costs divided among various groups (such as undergraduate and graduate students)? What role do student fees play? How is financial aid funded? How does the state decide how many students to fund in a given year? The purpose of this primer is to address these and other questions related to the funding of higher education in California, so as to aid policymakers and other interested parties in their deliberations and decision making.

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[PDF] The 2021-22 Budget: Overview of the Governor's Budget

January 10, 2021 - This report provides a brief summary and initial assessment of the proposed 2021-22 Governor’s Budget.

Correction 1/11/21: Totals for immediate and early action proposals have been corrected.

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[PDF] The 2020-21 Budget: Higher Education Analysis

February 20, 2020 - In this report, we analyze the Governor’s higher education budget proposals. Similar to last year, these proposals are wide ranging—including large base increases; targeted increases for apprenticeship programs and food pantries; one-time initiatives relating to extended education programs, work-based learning, faculty diversity, and animal shelters; and many facility projects.

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[PDF] Overview of Higher Education Proposals

March 6, 2019 - Presented to: Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 2 on Education Finance

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The 2022-23 Budget: Analysis of Major CCC Proposals

February 11, 2022 - This brief analyzes the Governor's major budget proposals for the California Community Colleges, with a focus on apportionments increases, enrollment, modifications to the Student Centered Funding Formula, part-time faculty health insurance, and deferred maintenance.

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The 2015-16 Budget: Overview of the Governor's Budget

January 13, 2015 - In the Governor's 2015-16 budget proposal, the administration raises its revenue estimates, and this results in a multibillion-dollar influx of new funds for schools and community colleges under the Proposition 98 minimum funding guarantee. The Governor's plan identifies cost pressures and budget risks in health and human services programs, and new program commitments outside of Proposition 98 are limited. The Governor's proposal to pay off the state's retiree health liabilities over the next few decades would, if funded, address the last of state government's large unaddressed liabilities. We conclude the state likely will collect more tax revenue in 2014-15 than the administration now estimates. Barring a sustained stock market drop, an additional 2014-15 revenue gain of $1 billion to $2 billion seems likely in addition to the Governor's budget projection. Even bigger gains of a few billion dollars more are possible in 2014-15. These additional 2014-15 revenues will go largely or entirely to schools and community colleges and could result in a few billion dollars of higher ongoing state payments to schools. Whether tax revenues grow further, stagnate, or, in the worst case, decline in 2015-16 will depend in large part on trends in volatile capital gains and business income.

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The 2022-23 Budget: Middle Class Scholarship Program

March 30, 2022 - This post describes the differences between the original Middle Class Scholarship program and the revamped program scheduled to go into effect in 2022-23. It then examines the estimated impacts of the revamped program and raises associated issues for legislative consideration.