Campus Budget News

Campus Budget FAQ Archive 10/2010

Posted October 12, 2010 / ARCHIVED January 7, 2011

This FAQ has been archived. The most current FAQ and other archived FAQs can be accessed from the Campus Budget News page.

ADDITIONAL QUESTIONS? If you have a question that is not answered by this FAQ, you may submit your question to (We also encourage campus employees to consult and share their concerns with their supervisor, unit head, dean, or division vice president.) We cannot respond to individual questions at this time, but will update the FAQ as appropriate to ensure that the common concerns of campus community members are addressed.


Q: What do we expect for the 2011-12 budget?

November 2010: At its November 2010 meeting, the CSU Board of Trustees adopted a 2011-12 budget proposal asking the state for an increase of approximately $379 million in General Fund support for the CSU. The increase seeks to meet needs associated with enrollment levels set forth by the state (2.5 percent enrollment growth). The budget proposal also includes a request for $121.5 million to "buy out" the prospective 2011-12 student fee increase (a 10 percent increase in state university fees). These "buy-out funds" would make it possible for the CSU to rescind the 2011-12 student fee increase. The proposal further seeks to replace with state funding the one-time federal stimulus funds ($106 million) allotted in 2010-11 to allow the CSU to serve more students.

Although the 2010-11 state budget partially restored funding to the CSU following previous budget reductions, the CSU's state support remains at approximately 2005-06 levels. In recent years, the CSU has seen its annual state support reduced by $625 million while absorbing $135 million in mandatory cost increases.

The CSU budget plan has been submitted to the State Department of Finance, and in January 2011 the Governor submits his budget proposal to the Legislature. The Governor's budget proposal is annually revised in May based on updated revenue projections and is supposed to be adopted by the Legislature by June 15. The 2011-12 fiscal year begins July 1, 2011.


Q: What does the 2010-11 state budget provide for the CSU?

On October 8, 2010, state lawmakers approved a 2010-11 state budget that restores $199 million to the California State University system and provides an additional $60.6 million for enrollment growth. More information is available at:

The $199 million restoration to the CSU serves to back-fill part of a “one-time cut” of $305 million made to the CSU’s 2009-10 General Fund base. The additional $60.6 million will fund enrollment growth across the system. (For background information, see “Governor’s January Budget Proposal and May Revise” section of the FAQs archived 10-12-10.)

The CSU is also to receive $106 million in one-time federal stimulus funding which will be used for payroll. This one-time money will allow the CSU to use monies from state support and student fee revenues previously set aside for payroll to admit new students and restore courses earlier cut due to budget reductions.

The 2010-11 budget increases the CSU’s General Fund support from $2.35 billion in 2009-10 to $2.62 billion, and represents the first restoration of state funding to the CSU since 2007. Last year’s level of state support was the lowest for the CSU since 1999-2000 ($2.25 billion), and although the CSU will see an increase in state funding this year, the level of support is still at approximately 2005-06 levels ($2.62 billion). Further, the CSU faces fiscal obligations including mandatory cost increases for health care benefits and energy that the General Fund increase will not cover.

Individual campuses have not yet received their allocations. More information on the budget allocation for Cal State Northridge will be provided when information becomes available.

UPDATED 11/4/2010: For more information relevant to the CSU budget and California State University, Northridge, please see the communication sent to faculty and staff members on November 2, 2010 by Tom McCarron, Vice President for Administration and Finance.

Q: I have read there will be change to pensions as a result of the state budget. Is this true?

The 2010-11 state budget includes pension reform that will affect state employees hired January 15, 2011and later, including CSU employees. The forthcoming changes do not apply to current employees. Details of how future employees will be impacted will be communicated once the CSU receives more information from the state.

Q: Will there be additional student fee increases?

During the summer of 2010, the CSU Board of Trustees approved a 5 percent student fee increase for undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs which took effect for the fall 2010 semester. This 5 percent fee increase was based on the Governor's January budget proposal, which assumed a 10 percent fee increase, and was linked to the Legislature's intent to "buy out" the remaining 5 percent for a total increase of 10 percent. However, the "buy out" was not implemented. It was announced with the approval of a 5 percent fee increase and no implementation of a "buy out" of 5 percent that the Board of Trustees would review at their November 2010 meeting whether adequate resources were provided to the CSU in the 2010-11 Budget Act and, on the basis of that review, determine whether additional fee action would be needed.

UPDATED 11/10/10: The CSU Board of Trustees approved a two-step fee increase at their November meeting to sustain enrollment, classes and services for current students. 

The Board of Trustees approved a mid-year increase of 5 percent for 2010-11 that will go into effect January 1, 2011 for the spring semester. This is linked to the Legislature not buying out the equivalent of a 5 percent increase which was part of the overall 10 percent increase assumed in the Governor's January budget proposal. The increase will raise student fees by $105 per semester for undergraduate students, $123 per semester for credential program students, and $129 per semester for graduate students. State university fees will increase from the current $2,115 to $2,220 for the spring 2011 semester for full-time undergraduate students.

In addition, the Board of Trustees adopted a 10 percent annual increase for the 2011-12 academic year. The Board of Trustees is requesting state funding to "buy out" the proposed 2011-12 fee increase by providing adequate funding in the 2011-12 budget. If approved by the Governor and Legislature, these funds would make it possible for the CSU to rescind the fee increase. Without the state "buy out," full-time state university fees will increase effective fall 2011 by $444 per academic year for undergraduate students, $516 for credential program participants and $546 for graduate students.  Undergraduate fees will rise from $4,440 to $4,884 per year. The fees for the Education Doctorate program are linked by law to the University of California graduate student rate.

One-third of revenue from these fee increases will be set aside for financial aid. Approximately 50 percent of CSU undergraduate students will not experience the fee increases because of financial aid. The planned 2011-12 fee increase will generate approximately $121.5 million in revenue (net of financial aid) for the CSU to enable provision of adequate course sections and student services. 


Q: What is the enrollment target for 2010-11?

As the budget situation for the CSU has changed, the 2010-11 enrollment targets for the CSU and Cal State Northridge have been increased. 

The 2010-11 CSU systemwide target was originally set at 310,317 FTES. This was increased to 317,708 with the receipt of Federal Stimulus money. The CSU systemwide enrollment target was further adjusted to 323,994 on September 27 and 338,407 on October 13. Concurrently, the enrollment target for Cal State Northridge was increased from 22,946 to 23,575 (with the receipt of Federal Stimulus money), to 24,226 (September 27), and most recently to 25.461 (October 13).

Q: Will Cal State Northridge accept new transfer students for spring 2011? 

The CSU announced on August 31, 2010 that the application period for spring 2011 would remain open until September 27, 2010. This included Cal State Northridge. (The CSU's traditional application cycle for admission in the spring term is August 1 through August 31.) However, due to the uncertainty surrounding the 2010-11 state budget, acceptance of new students for spring 2011 remained contingent at that time on restored state funding. After opening the application cycle on August 1, CSU campuses, including Cal State Northridge, began the eligibility review process. 

While the budget for the State of California continued to be negotiated, the Chancellor's Office on September 27, 2010 directed that the CSU "must continue to commit itself to the service of its students and to those who qualify for admission." After evaluation of available information about the CSU's expected budget and the consequences of delaying a decision, the Chancellor determined that the FTE targets for CY2010-11 should be raised, and campuses should admit all eligible students who applied for spring 2011. A message from the Chancellor's Office dated September 27, 2010 states, "we are proceeding on the basis of our confidence that the Governor will succeed in securing the budget for higher education that he proposed in January 2010."