News & Commentary

Governor’s Proposed Budget Keeps College Students Centered Amid Projected Deficit

On Tuesday morning Governor Newsom released his proposed budget for 2023-24, providing details on his plan to spend $297 billion. Newsom acknowledged the economic volatility of the moment during his press conference in Sacramento while also sharing his Administration’s intent to “[keep] our promises.”

While cuts and delayed investments in certain areas are evident throughout the budget proposal – most notably to climate and housing programs – higher education spending plans and promises from previous years are largely upheld across the three public higher education segments. If approved, UC and CSU will see their compacts honored and receive a 5% annual increase in base state support pending progress on educational outcomes. California Community Colleges would be granted new monies as well, with the addition of an 8.13 percent COLA and $200 million to address steep enrollment declines.

Efforts to expand financial aid for California’s students would also continue, with Newsom proposing $227 million more for the new “debt-free” Middle Class Scholarship. Though the budget proposal does not include an increase to Cal Grants – the largest state-administered aid program – the “Administration remains attentive to the 2022 Budget Act’s provisions regarding the fiscal conditions upon which the Cal Grant Reform Act may be implemented…”

“Governor Newsom’s proposed budget for 2023-24 is, above all else, an affirmation of this Administration’s commitment to expanding opportunities and improving the lives of California’s students and their families,” says Eloy Ortiz Oakley, president and CEO of College Futures Foundation. “This budget proposal is also an acknowledgement that even amid shortfalls, we must continue to address persistent inequities in higher education and maintain a clear focus on its connection to inclusive socio-economic vitality for our state.”

Read the Full Higher Education Budget Summary

Dive Into the Proposed Education Budget with Ed Trust-West on February 1st