An open letter to the College Community
The California state budget crisis continues to adversely impact California Community Colleges. In June, Governor Brown signed a state budget that included a student fee increase from $26 to $36 per unit and state general fund revenue reductions for California Community Colleges of approximately $400 to $600 million. The plan doesn't increase taxes but projects $4 billion in new tax revenue associated with the economic recovery and expected initial public offerings of several prominent California companies. If the revenue does not come in as expected, tiers of midyear cuts and an increase in student fees of $10, from $36 to $46 per unit, would be enacted, depending on the status of the revenues as of December 15, 2011.
For the first quarter of the year, revenues are not coming in as expected and the mid-year budget triggers are likely to be pulled. However, Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill that defers the $10 fee increase until summer 2012, sparing community college students the mid-year fee increase.
The budget impacts below are questions and answers to common budget questions. The information provides estimates based on information that is known at this point in time.
How does the state approved budget affect California Community Colleges?
Revenue cuts to California Community Colleges will be approximately $400 to $600 million
Lost headcount in students of up to approximately 182,000
Lost course sections of up to approximately 28,000
What does this mean to Chaffey College?
Revenue cuts of approximately $5 million
Lost headcount in students of up to approximately 2,305
Lost course sections of up to approximately 309
The cuts will directly impact services to students by:
Providing fewer classes.
Longer time to complete certificates, degrees, and transfer.
Reduced service hours for essential functions (Admissions and Records, Financial Aid, Counseling, Library, and Success Centers).
Increased student traffic in all support areas.
Some services will no longer be provided.
How will the midyear state reductions affect Chaffey College?
The anticipated estimated midyear state revenue reductions are already included in the 2011-2012 Chaffey College adopted budget. So, based on current projections, it is expected that no additional major midyear reductions will be applied to the college's budget.
The state revenue reductions included in the 2011-2012 adopted budget are approximately $5 million.
Since the midyear student fee increase has been deferred until summer 2012, the District may experience an additional small reduction in state revenues.
Will Chaffey College be implementing additional reductions?
It is anticipated that the 2012-2013 state budget will cause more challenges.
It will take several more years for the state and national economy to recover.
Current cost reduction strategies will most likely continue.
The District will seek additional cost reduction strategies for the 2012-2013 fiscal year.
Can the funds the college spends to construct and/or renovate buildings be used to offset the budget reductions instead?
In 2002 the residents of the Chaffey College district voted to support Measure L, a general obligation bond. The funds from Measure L are restricted funds and can only be used to rehabilitate facilities, add classrooms, and provide instructional equipment needed to serve Chaffey College students. Funds may be used only for these purposes and cannot be used to add more classes or hire more instructors.
Hopefully, the information contained in this budget update provided a better understanding of the Chaffey College operation and the state budget. I know that this is a difficult time for everyone - especially our students. Please know that we will continue to provide the highest level of service that our funding permits, and be assured that we are using this time to review processes and to evaluate creative alternatives that would work more efficiently during this difficult time.