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Cal State Tally For Lost Revenue And Coronavirus Costs: $337 Million

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The California State University trustees will meet online to discuss the fiscal report. (Adolfo Guzman-Lopez/LAist)
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In a first glimpse at what's almost certain to be a gloomy fiscal future, California State University says in a new report that unanticipated costs to fight the COVID-19 pandemic and lost revenue connected to campus shutdowns has cost the unversity $337 million -- so far.

Cal State also estimates that it will lose $287 million in revenue from income sources like housing and parking fees, bookstore sales, licensing and other ventures. It has already spent $50 million on unanticipated costs related to the coronavirus outbreak, including campus cleaning, overtime, and buying equipment to shift to online learning.

A university spokesman said the hit for the spring semester has been softened by about $260 million in federal relief funds, and for now Cal State's 23 campuses can tap into reserves to make up for some of the rest of the costs.

But the long-term outlook is not promising. “If existing conditions persist into the summer and fall,” the report says, “one of the many challenges the CSU could face is the potential for additional, significant, and precipitous revenue drops."

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The report was released in advance of the May 12 meeting of the Cal State Board of Trustees.

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