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Report 04-20: Fiscal Profiles, 2004

Published by The California Postsecondary Education Commission

December 2004

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This report contains and analyzes statistical information about the financing of California postsecondary education from the 1965-66 fiscal year through 2004-05. In addition, there is information on California public elementary and secondary education financing as well as State government in general. The Commission compiles, disseminates and analyzes this information to provide policy makers with comprehensive and comparable financial data that can be used in comparative analysis of higher education finance issues. This document also provides an efficient and accurate response to the many questions that the Commission receives each year.

This report, the thirteenth in the series, retains the formatting and structure of prior years. Because of publication timelines, some of the data shown for the current fiscal year are estimates at this point. They will be replaced with actual data when the budget is finalized.

Major highlights in the report include the following:

  • Total State General Fund spending in California is $79 billion in 2004-05, an increase of $3 billion over the January Budget’s proposed $76.1 billion. Including more than $26 billion in selected State Special Funds, the total proposed State budget for 2004-05 is estimated to be more than $105 billion;
  • State General Funds plus Local Property Tax revenues for the state’s three public higher education systems increases by $454 million over last year (4.6%); and
  • 2004-05 higher education funding is anticipated to increase by $454 million in combined State General Fund and local funds over 2003-04, mostly concentrated in the community colleges, which are anticipated to receive $418 million more in 2004-05 than in 2003-04. Thus, the net effect for funding for the remainder of higher education in 2004-05 is minimal. Another round of increases in State University and University of California student fees will partially offset this shortfall.
The report documents that the 2004-05 budget for the State of California represents the third “recession-era” budget in a row. General Fund spending proposed for 2004-05 is more than $2 billion lower than in 2000-01. The spending level is lower than what would occur with normal caseload growth in service populations.

The report concludes that California’s higher education systems face many challenges over the next several years. Chief among these are increasing enrollment pressures and the need to improve both the persistence and graduation rates of students.

This report was transmitted to the Commission at its September 7 – 8, 2004, meeting and was finalized in December 2004.

Related Topics: Budgeting and Financing of Higher Education

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