CSU Budget Q & A


Yes, the Governor projected a three-year revenue increase of $4.7 billion in his budget proposal. Additionally, the Governor deposited $5 billion into the state’s Rainy Day Fund. The LAO estimates a $7.5 billion dollar surplus of discretionary funds to use on any legislative priority.

The CSU’s Operating Budget is made up of two sources – the state general fund appropriation and tuition and fees. The Governor is referring to an increase of only the state General Fund, which is roughly half of the CSU operating budget.

The CSU recently agreed to well-deserved raises for most staff and faculty employee groups, which will cost $122 million in 2018-19. Additionally, a small portion of pension, all health care premium costs and other compulsory items will cost $31 million. Combined, these financial obligations total $153 million— the minimum needed to prevent campus budget cuts. Additional investments in the Graduation Initiative, new student access, and critical facility repairs are also necessary and raise the funding requested of the state to $263 million. Therefore, the Governor’s proposal of $92 million creates a CSU budget gap of between $61 million and $171 million, necessitating the CSU to discuss all funding options.

No. The CSU maintains that the state has invested $907 million in the university since the economic recovery began, nearly equal to what had been cut from the CSU budget. This amount is the total of all unallocated funds provided to the CSU to invest in students, faculty and staff. Notably, over this timeframe, the CSU has increased enrollment by more than 36,500 students, equivalent to the enrollment at CSU San Bernardino and CSU Chico.

The Governor’s figure includes many items that did not actually increase the amount of funding available to invest in the institution, such as the $250 million cut that the CSU avoided with the passage of Proposition 30.

Tuition Proposal

The CSU Board of Trustees has not adopted a tuition increase. They discussed the tuition increase proposal as an information item at their January meeting and put over making a final decision to May 2018.

No, the CSU Board of Trustees only heard the tuition fee proposal as an information item at their January meeting. The information provided background about revenues and expenditures, along with this proposal. No decision will be made about this proposal until a later board meeting.

Grant aid will cover any increase in tuition for the majority of undergraduate students. Specifically, 62 percent of undergraduates have their tuition fully covered by a Cal Grant, State University Grant or waiver. Additionally, 80 percent of all students receive some form of financial aid.

Graduation Initiative 2025

Launched in January 2016, the CSU’s Graduation Initiative 2025 is already showing promising results and completion rates are now at all-time highs in all categories, and we continue to make progress. Today, the median degree for first-time freshman is 4.7 years, consistent with the national average.

In the 2016-17 academic year, 99,000 undergraduate students earned their degree – a record high for the CSU with nearly 7,000 additional students graduating compared to the previous year.

Our Graduation Initiative 2025 targets for completion and equity will make the CSU the national flagship of public comprehensive universities.


The CSU reached multiyear agreements with faculty and staff bargaining unions in 2017. These agreements provided our employees with well-deserved raises that equate to, on average, 3 percent per year. These investments recognize that employees are critical to CSU’s ability to provide students with opportunities to obtain a high-quality university education.

Numerous collective bargaining agreements have been ratified that provided general salary increases from 3%-5% for several years. For instance, nine units of SEIU 1000 employees, including unit 3 professional educators and librarians, will receive 4% in 2017, 4% in 2018 and 3.5% in 2019.


Impaction is an enrollment tool of last resort and really is a means of distributing a scarce resource – i.e. When a CSU campus receives more applications from applicants who meet minimum CSU eligibility than they have resources to support, “impaction” are the requirements by which the campus selects students to admit from the pool of eligible students. The root issue is that CSU campuses don’t have sufficient resources to meet the demand from all CSU-eligible students.

In order to manage enrollment within current budget constraints while preserving the highest quality academic experience and services to students, impacted campuses give priority admission consideration to first-time undergraduate and transfer applicants who have attended schools located within a closely-defined local geographic area. Non-local applicants are required to meet supplementary criteria. Students are encouraged to apply to their local CSU. The CSU will update the local admissions policy later this year.