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Subject: Fwd: An article from FresnoBee.com
From: Jose Martinez-Saldana <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Jose Martinez-Saldana <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Wed, 24 Mar 2004 10:51:37 -0800
Content-Type:text/plain
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text/plain (132 lines)


FYI,

Not sure if anyone caught this article that appeared in the Fresno Bee
last week.


Jose Martinez-Saldana,
Director of Early Outreach and Support Programs
California State University, Monterey Bay
100 Campus Center / 86B
Seaside, CA  93955-8001
Telephone:  (831) 582-4600 xt. 3657
Fax:  (831) 582-3663
Email:  [log in to unmask]

----------

Bustamante, CSU chancellor Reed square off
The two debate efforts to fight budget cuts, fee increases at colleges.
By Jim SteinbergThe Fresno Bee
 Published 03/17/04 04:55:18

  Lt. Gov. Cruz Bustamante complained Tuesday that California State
University's administration is failing to fight for student access to the
largest public university system in the world.

  Bustamante, a trustee, made his remarks during the first day of a
two-day session of the CSU Board of Trustees in the Save Mart Center at
Fresno State.

  Bustamante goaded Chancellor Charles B. Reed for a lack of aggression
against additional cuts Gov. Schwarzenegger has proposed in the state's
financial support for the CSU system.

  Reed responded during the meeting and in answer to questions later that
he has been working with the governor and legislators to protect the CSU
system.

  Schwarzenegger proposed cutting the CSU and University of California
budgets by 9% and raising student fees 10%.

  During an afternoon session, trustees considered the additional
possibility of 40% fee increases for CSU graduate students. Trustees
discussed a gap between the costs of running the university system and
payment of those costs by the financially depleted state government.

  Bustamante asked if Reed and the governor had addressed the growing gap
between CSU's costs and state support.

  Reed answered that "it is clear this administration is not proposing any
tax increases."

  Schwarzenegger recognizes the link between jobs and a well-educated work
force, Reed said, but the governor has said that every segment of
California will "suffer until the budget turns around."

  Bustamante asked, "How has he expressed his support for education? Was
it in words, some kind of pantomime?"

  Reed answered that he and the governor had talked about Schwarzenegger's
role in protecting CSU, which includes Fresno State, from further cuts.

  "Where has he protected us?" Bustamante asked.

  "We are not through yet," Reed said, "but he did say he didn't want to
see further decreases."

  Bustamante called that claim "disingenuous." He said cuts and fee
increases will keep 20,000 students out of the CSU system for financial
and enrollment reasons and 200,000 from all state colleges and
universities.

  He accused Reed's administration, and later his colleagues on the CSU
board, of failing to take a sufficiently tough stand against
Schwarzenegger.

  "There appears to be total acquiescence in a lack of advocacy,"
Bustamante said.

  "This board does not appear to be moving aggressively in a growing
problem." And that lack of movement has caused "real concern about the
board's mission and if advocacy isn't at least part of its mission."

  Reed said the governor and state Legislature decide such policy
questions.

  Bustamante answered that they were "shortchanging students, health care
and the quality of life."

  He said a 25-cents-per-pack increase on the cigarette tax would help
200,000 students go to college and reinvigorate "the engine of our
economy."

  Reed said after the meeting that the trustees and the chancellor need to
support Schwarzenegger.

  He said he believes he can work with Schwarzenegger in using the CSU
system as a major tool in California's economic development.

  "The governor can help protect our budget," Reed said. "The Legislature
cut us $85 million last time. That is where we are more vulnerable."

  The quick, sharp exchange between Bustamante and Reed came during
discussion of a long-term fee and financial aid policy. It was discussed
in general terms and will return to the board's agenda in May.

  Trustees will consider a formal policy of regular student fee increases
tied to the cost of living until they reach a percentage of the average
cost of education for each full-time student.

  Bustamante said after the meeting that he opposes adopting an easy,
permanent way for the state to add costs to students.

  "I have a fundamental disagreement with the trustees at a time we are
trying to resolve our budget deficits," he said.

  To "stick 200,000 students" out of reach of public education and make
them vulnerable to unemployment is wrong and must be fought, the
lieutenant governor said.

  Asked if he could stop the increases, Bustamante said, "I don't know,
but I will keep raising the issue."

  The reporter can be reached at [log in to unmask] or at 441-6311.

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