Governor Turns to Students for Funds Again

    According to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s proposed 2008-09
    state budget, the University of California would lose approximately $332
    million in state funding as soon as July of this year. The governor hopes that
    the severe reduction will put a dent in the projected $14.5-billion state
    deficit.

    But even by footing the bill for the state’s ballooning
    debt, UC students would still see dwindling services in the upcoming school
    year, with fewer class offerings, program eliminations and weakened academic
    resources and support. Basically, they would pay more and get less — and it’s
    not UC students alone.

    California community colleges and the California State
    University system would also meet massive financial slashes in the upcoming
    school year, losing $484 million and $312.9 million respectively. California
    community colleges would also face a $40 million midyear cut if legislators
    implement the new budget. But the K-12 schools would fare the worst, with an
    astounding $4.4 billion in funding cuts in 2008-09 and a midyear loss of $360
    million.

    It simply isn’t fair that students should be forced to sit
    by and watch as their fees climb and their services shrink. By endorsing the
    proposal, Schwarzenegger would be turning his back on the thousands of talented
    young people desperately seeking a college education.

    State lawmakers should think long and hard before they
    approve the governor’s budget proposal, exploring every possible avenue to
    lighten the burden that will otherwise fall on California’s students.

    The governor may think that by pushing a stranglehold on
    state spending he’s delivering on his no-tax-increase promise to California
    citizens, but in reality he’s failed miserably. All he’s really done is
    insidiously dump it in the hands of overburdened students so that he can turn a
    blind eye and come out looking like the good guy to the taxpayers. And for
    that, he should be ashamed.

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