Davis Faculty Association

Regarding Letters to Legislators Concerning the UC Budget

One role of the DFA is to keep you informed about the progress of UC’s budget as it moves through the Legislature and to apprise you of any actions you can take to help.  We sent an update on April 21 which referred to  a full report of President Atkinson and and V.P. Larry Hershman’s comments to the Legislature and to the Regents that is available on the following link. http://www.ucop.edu/regents/regmeet/mar03/502.pdf

Recently, President Atkinson sent out a newsletter entitled: “A BUDGET UPDATE FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA PRESIDENT FOR UC FACULTY AND STAFF” which is available on the web at www.ucop.edu/news/budget/issue7.html if you have not already seen it. In the Q&A part of that message he wrote: “Currently, the state Legislature is evaluating the Governor’s proposed 2003-04 state-funded budget for the University. One of the things you can do is to write your legislator, stressing the importance of continued strong state investment in UC by sharing your personal experience of how specific programs or services to students or the public are being or may be impacted by budget cuts.”

The Faculty Association legislative monitors agree that carefully crafted letters from individual faculty members could be very helpful to the University’s cause, but we think that they should be directed to members of the Assembly and Senate committees that at this moment are dealing with the UC budget in the trenches (see below) rather than their own local representatives, who will get into the act only when the horse trading is pretty much over.

Under no circumstances do we recommend saying word one about faculty salaries in general or merits in particular. The administration has already made a strong case for keeping salaries competitive, but the best that one could realistically hope for from such a pitch would be legislative support for a rapid return to parity with our comparison institutions when the state’s finances are healthier.

Faculty members are very credible sources of anecdotal evidence regarding the educational consequences of past, present and future educational policy and budget decisions. For example: in recent years the legislature has sought and obtained some significant changes in UC’s admissions policies. Partly because of them, UC is presently “overenrolled” by about 5000 students systemwide. What that really means is that we are underfunded by the dollar equivalent of 5000 students at the so-called marginal cost of instruction,  currently about $9,000 per FTE student. UC projects that in 2003-04 the over enrollment will be more than 12,000 FTES. Like it or not, on some campuses the student: faculty ratio will have to increase, even though our current systemwide figure is larger than that of any of our comparison-8 institutions. The inevitable consequences will be larger classes, fewer sections of required courses, etc., etc.

If you do write a letter or send an e-mail to one of the legislators listed below, please send a blind copy to Myrna Hays, Legislative Coordinator of the Council of UC Faculty Associations, 1129 Fordham Drive, Davis, CA 95616; e-mail address: dfamhays@dcn.davis.ca.us

Senate Budget Sub-committee for Education:
Chair: Jack Scott D-Pasadena, Senate District 21, Senator.scott@sen.ca.gov
Bob Margett R-Diamond Bar , Senate District 29, Senator.Margett@sen.ca.gov
John Vasconcellos, D-San Jose Senate District 13, Senator.Vasconcellos@sen.ca.gov

Assembly Budget Sub-committee for Education:
S. Joseph Simitian, Chair Dem-21 (916) 319-2021 Assemblymember.Simitian@assembly.ca.gov
Wilma Chan Dem-16 (916) 319-2016 Assemblymember.Chan@assembly.ca.gov
Lynn Daucher Rep-72 (916) 319-2072 Assemblymember.Daucher@assembly.ca.gov
Jackie Goldberg Dem-45 (916) 319-2045 Assemblymember.Goldberg@assembly.ca.gov
Carol Liu Dem-44 (916) 319-2044 Assemblymember.Liu@assembly.ca.gov
Sharon Runner Rep-36 (916) 319-2036 Assemblywoman.Runner@assembly.ca.gov

This entry was posted on Friday, April 25th, 2003 at 6:05 am and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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