June 9, 2009
To all faculty and staff:
In my last email to you dated May 15, 2009, I stated that Vice President Tom McCarron or I would keep you up to date on budget developments. Following the results of the May 19, 2009, Special Election, I am sure many of you are aware of the increasing gravity of the state budget situation and its impact on the CSU budget for 2009-10. While we still do not have definitive information, the CSU now anticipates budget reductions of between $400 million and $700 million. For Cal State Northridge, this translates into a reduction of between $28 million and $49 million. As this suggests, the budget situation in California and the CSU is more serious than anticipated.
While we have worked to manage this situation at Cal State Northridge, the magnitude of the anticipated cut is such that all campuses will be affected. The Board of Trustees and the Chancellor, in consultation with the campus presidents, are considering all options to achieve this level of reduction. For example, last week the Chancellor proposed changes to Title 5 of the California Code of Regulations to modify provisions related to furloughs, salary reductions and unpaid holidays for management and non-represented personnel. The timing of the proposed changes met a 45-day notice requirement should action be needed at the Trustees’ July 21 meeting. The proposed revisions can be found at http://www.calstate.edu/title5/index.shtml.
I must stress again that no final decisions have been made by the system or Cal State Northridge. Until there is a final approved budget from the Governor and California legislature, and until the CSU has an opportunity to review the extent of the reductions and determine appropriate action, no final decisions can be made by the campus.
Like all of you, I am deeply concerned by the scale of the budget crisis. We need to be prepared for reductions that will have a substantial impact on the University’s ability to do its work and perhaps on many personally.
As I have said in the past, I am confident that Cal State Northridge can continue to thrive and achieve its goals. History has shown we can overcome any challenge—whether a downturn in the economy or a major natural disaster—and emerge stronger and more vibrant. Indeed, our core mission of preparing students for the future remains essential to the future of the state and the nation. We should be proud that Cal State Northridge remains a high demand campus and a first-choice destination for students. The continued teamwork, commitment, and creativity of faculty and staff will be especially crucial for us to meet this latest challenge together.
I know that reports and rumors about both the state and University budget can be a source of anxiety. To address these concerns, the University has established a website, “Campus Budget News,” at /campusbudgetnews to serve as an up-to-date resource for anyone concerned about the budget situation. It will be accessible directly from the University website’s front page, and should be your first stop for firm information about the budget. Any announcements or decisions made on other campuses will not necessarily apply to Cal State Northridge, so it is important for everyone to be well informed.
A new FAQ will be added to the site shortly that will answer many of your questions about the budget situation. And, of course, you can expect direct communications from me or Vice President McCarron as the situation evolves.
I appreciate everyone’s continued hard work and dedication, especially during these trying times. We at Cal State Northridge are fortunate that the institution’s excellence and growing reputation have allowed us to thrive. While serious challenges lie ahead, I see no reason to doubt our ability to continue on this path if we work together.
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