Campus Budget News

Campus Budget FAQ Archive 9/2010

Posted September 3, 2010 / Archived October 12, 2010

This FAQ is now archived. Please visit the main Campus Budget News home page for the most current version of this FAQ. Earlier archived FAQs can also be accessed from the Campus Budget News home page.


Q: The Governor’s January budget proposal was released on January 8, 2010. What does it propose for the CSU?

The Governor's initial budget proposal for 2010-11 proposes to restore $305 million to the CSU base budget, and provide an additional $60.6 million for enrollment growth.

The budget reductions in 2009-10 included $305 million in one-time cuts that the State had committed to restore in 2010-11. The Governor's proposed budget would restore that base budget funding. The $60.6 million for enrollment growth is contingent upon the State receiving a threshold amount in federal aid for other state programs.

Overall, the Governor's budget proposal seeks to close a $19.9 billion deficit over the next 18 months through a variety of budget cuts, shifts in spending, and assumed new federal funds. However, the Governor's budget proposal puts a priority on protecting education.

More information on the Governor's January budget proposal is available at:

Q: On May 14, the Governor released his “May revise.” What does it recommend for the CSU?

Governor Schwarzenegger’s May Revision of the state budget, based on more accurate revenue projections, continues to include the proposed restoration of $305 million to the California State University’s 2010-11 budget, as well as an additional $60.6 million to support enrollment growth across the CSU’s 23 campuses. 

The $305 million would serve to backfill a "one-time" reduction to the CSU budget for 2009-2010. The $60.6 million would fund the expansion of enrollment.  In the governor’s January proposal this additional enrollment funding was contingent upon the state receiving a threshold amount in federal aid for other state programs. The May Revision removes this contingency. In addition, the Governor's May budget revision proposal includes the restoration of new competitive CalGrant awards. 

Even with this proposed funding, the CSU’s level of state funded support remains well below that of previous years. Since 2007-08, the CSU has seen a reduction of $625 million in state support. 

More information is available at:


Q: I read on July 28 that Governor Schwarzenegger has directed through executive order that state agencies reinstate furlough days until a new budget is passed. Does this affect us?

CSU Chancellor Charles B. Reed reiterated in a statement July 28, 2010 that CSU employees will not be subject to furloughs.

Chancellor Reed further stated, "While the CSU is not required to reinstitute furloughs, we will continue efforts to cooperate with the state's effort to minimize the impact on the state general fund. Our employee furloughs ended June 30 and were part of an overall plan to address the massive budget cuts of the past two years. We do not plan to renegotiate furloughs with our employee labor unions, but as requested by the Executive Order, will work to pay CSU employee compensation with alternative sources other than state general fund."

The Chancellor's message in its entirety can be accessed here.

Q: I read a newspaper article which reported that in the event of a state budget impasse, the wages of state employees, including the California State University, may be temporarily reduced to minimum wage until the budget is approved. Is this true?

(Updated July 2, 2010): Chancellor Charles B. Reed stated in a communication to CSU employees, "We want to let CSU employees know that we have received confirmation from the State Controller's office that our employees' compensation is not impacted by this order. Employees will receive their regular paychecks and can expect their normal compensation." The communication also states that the CSU intends to pay its employees with alternative revenue sources other than state general funds if it becomes necessary. The Chancellor's message in its entirety can be accessed here.

(Updated July 1, 2010): Media sources reported that the the Department of Personnel Administration planned to issue a pay letter ordering the Controller to reduce state employee salaries to the minimum wage. In a statement, the Controller, responded that absent a final court ruling, he will work to protect the State’s finances and pay full wages earned by state employees.

As recently reported in the Sacramento Bee, the Governor in 2008 took action to implement a 2003 California Supreme Court decision which limited wages paid to state employees during a budget impasse. The State Controller refused to comply, however, and the Department of Personnel Administration filed a lawsuit to compel the Controller to comply with the Governor’s directive. Like many other complex legal cases, this matter may be held up in the court system for some time. Until the courts make a final decision, CSU’s Human Resources advises us that the CSU is unable to determine what impact, if any, this may have on CSU employees. The CSU will continue to monitor the case. Members of the campus community will be kept apprised of any new developments, or may follow up with our Office of Human Resources if they have additional questions or concerns. (A June 21 court hearing on this matter resulted in no new developments in this matter.)

Q: I read that the CSU Board of Trustees recently approved a 5 percent student fee increase to take effect for the Fall 2010 semester. How does this decision affect the budget planning for Cal State Northridge?

The CSU Board of Trustees recently approved a 5 percent student fee increase for undergraduate, graduate and professional programs. This is less than the anticipated 10 percent student fee increase or buyout from the state. (The Governor's January budget proposal and "May revise" both assumed revenue to the CSU equivalent to a 10 percent fee increase, and the CSU Board of Trustees previously asked the state to provide new revenue equivalent to a 10 percent fee increase.) However, the State Assembly budget committee has proposed that additional state revenues be provided the CSU to make up the difference between this 5 percent fee increase and the previously anticipated 10 percent fee increase or buyout. As a result, the campus anticipates no change in revenue projections

The campus budget planning provides for the campus meeting its obligations through new revenue provided by the 5 percent fee increase, additional state money as proposed by the State Assembly budget committee (equivalent to buying out a 5 percent fee increase), a 5 percent base budget reduction in each campus division, projected savings from the 10.8 percent enrollment reduction, and closing any remaining gap (if necessary) with one-time money from central reserves. 

Q: Will there be additional student fee increases?

We do not know. However, the CSU Board of Trustees intends, at its November 2010 meeting, to review whether adequate resources have been provided to the CSU by the Legislature and Governor in the 2010-11 Budget Act and, on the basis of that review, determine whether additional fee actions merit consideration.


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 continues 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.”

The 2010-11 enrollment target for Cal State Northridge was increased from 22,946 resident FTES, to 23,575 resident FTES with the allocation of Federal Stimulus money, to a revised resident target of 24,226 FTES announced on September 27.