FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
REGENTS ADOPT 2006-07 BUDGET PROPOSAL, STUDENT FEE LEVELS
The University of California Board of Regents today (Nov. 16) adopted a 2006-07 budget proposal that includes funding for student enrollment growth, expanded support for graduate education, improvements in the student-faculty ratio, additional aid for low- and middle-income families, and permanent state support for academic preparation programs, among other things.
The budget proposal is consistent with the May 2004 compact between UC and the governor. That document spells out anticipated state funding levels and university accountability measures over a multi-year period, along with projected fee increases to provide predictability for students.
To help preserve the quality of the instructional program and help the University rebuild after years of state budget cuts, the Regents approved fee increases of 8 percent ($492) for resident undergraduates, 10 percent ($690) for resident graduate academic students, and 5 percent (dollar amounts varying by school) for most professional school students in 2006-07. UC will devote an equivalent of 33 percent of new mandatory systemwide fee revenue from undergraduates and professional students to financial aid, and 45 percent of new graduate academic fee revenue.
The vote was 17-2. The board adopted fee levels with the understanding that “student fees as proposed will be reduced or rescinded prior to implementation if the governor and Legislature provide the funding to reduce or eliminate the fee increases and the remaining portions of the compact remain in place.”
The budget and fee proposals are intended to shore up support for the UC system after the substantial budget cuts of the early 2000s, when state funding to the University fell 15 percent. While UC is working to enhance private support and achieve internal efficiencies, the University still faces the challenges of a long-term decline in state support, a projected leveling off of federal funding for research, and a $500 million shortfall between the University’s current budget and the resources needed to address the Regents’ priorities for sustaining UC’s quality.
“We still have serious ongoing funding gaps – relating to the student-faculty ratio; relating to salaries, which are now significantly behind the market for both faculty and staff; and relating to the libraries, technology, and other infrastructure that support the academic enterprise,” said UC President Robert C. Dynes. “Make no mistake: This university’s quality, and the magnitude of this university’s contribution to California, are still at risk today.”
Under the budget proposal, UC’s state-funded budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2006, would total $2.976 billion, an increase of $131 million or 4.6 percent above the 2005-06 level.
Highlights of the budget
Below are highlights of the budget adopted by the Regents. These items would be funded both from state resources and other revenue to the University, including student fee revenue:
The Regents adopted the below student fee increases for the 2006-07 year, with the caveat noted above that the fee increases could be reduced or rescinded prior to implementation “if the governor and Legislature provide the funding to reduce or eliminate the fee increases and the remaining portions of the compact remain in place.”
To preserve affordability for needy students, UC will set aside an amount equivalent to 33 percent of new revenue generated from the undergraduate increases in mandatory systemwide fees, 45 percent of this new fee revenue from graduate academic students, and 33 percent of new revenue from professional school fee increases.
The proposal, in conjunction with the state’s Cal Grant program, is expected to provide sufficient additional funding to fully cover the systemwide fee increases for UC’s grant-eligible undergraduates (generally those with parental income below about $60,000 per year).
In addition, as noted above, a portion of these funds will be allocated to assist undergraduates from middle-income families. With this one-year program, needy families with income levels below $100,000 per year who are not otherwise eligible for fee-paying grant assistance will be eligible for a $250 grant to cover roughly half of the undergraduate fee increase in 2006-07.
UC leads the nation among top-ranked national universities in the proportion of undergraduate students enrolled from low-income backgrounds. UC students received more than $1.1 billion in grants and scholarships in 2005-06.
In addition to approving a 2005-06 operating budget, the Regents adopted a budget for capital improvements. It requests $340 million in state funding from general obligation bonds and/or lease-revenue bonds in order to expand and upgrade academic facilities to support enrollment growth and to maintain progress on seismic and other life-safety improvements while also addressing essential infrastructure and building renewal needs.
# # #
Send comments or questions
about this web site to one of the webmasters