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No More Fee Hikes for UC, CSU Students...Yet

UC President Mark Yudof (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, file)
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By Nick Wilson/Special to LAist

UC Chancellor Mark Yudof and CSU Chancellor Charles Reed announced Monday that they will not seek further tuition hikes this year, instead trimming enrollment and services to meet $1.4 billion in proposed cuts. The leaders warned, however, that if voters don’t approve Gov. Jerry Brown’s tax extensions in June, more cuts and fee hikes may be necessary.

“[Gov. Brown] already told Mark and I straight up: If this doesn't pass we're going to come back and cut you some more. We can't afford to take any more cuts,” Reed told reports Monday. “You have to pay for what you get.”

Governor Jerry Brown’s proposed budget includes a $500 million reduction for the UC system, another $500 million for CSU, and a $400 million cut for community colleges. Joining Yudof and Reed at the press conference was community colleges Chancellor Jack Scott, who was the only leader willing to endorse the tax extensions on Monday.

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Brown has called on community colleges to raise fees to $36 a credit, up from $26. The UC system has already raised fees over 40% over the last two years. Preliminary figures presented by Yudof calls for reductions at all of the UC schools, including $70 million at UC Davis, $80.8 million at UC Berkeley, and $96 million at UCLA.

Reed expects CSU to reduce enrollment by 10,000 students next fall, but hopes to avoid further tuition increases. “We raised tuition 10 percent in November and I don't plan on doing it again except if in June the revenue enhancements that the governor is proposing fail and the whole bottom falls out of everything, we'll have to come back and revisit that.”

Yudoff warned Monday, "What scares me is the $500 million proposed reduction could be the best case scenario. We don't know what's on the ballot or how voters will react. Cuts could be much deeper than that."