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Report 96-7: Fiscal Profiles, 1996: The Sixth in a Series of Factbooks About the Financing of California Higher Education

Published by The California Postsecondary Education Commission

September 1996

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This report contains statistical information about California higher education from the 1965-66 fiscal year through 1996-97 year, along with related information on State financing in general and public elementary and secondary education in particular. The sixth in a series, it follows the format of the Commission's August 1995 Fiscal Profiles. 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. Secondly, this document provides an efficient and accurate response to the many questions on this subject that the Commission receives each year.

There is only one new display in this year's edition, a complete reworking of a student financial aid display (35) to show information in student loan volume. Several other displays have also been updated and revised to provide additional information on various aspects of California postsecondary education finance. Principal among the highlights of the information in this report is that the 1996-97 budget provides relatively substantial funding increases to the public systems and for State student financial aid. This year's budget is the second of a four-year funding compact between the California State University and the University of California and the Governor to provide moderate, stable funding increases through 1999.

The budget contains funding to implement a policy decision to hold constant resident undergraduate and graduate student fees in all the public postsecondary systems for the third consecutive year. The budget includes $20 million for expansion of both the number of Cal Grant awards and the maximum level of these awards for students attending independent colleges, universities and proprietary institutions: $10 million will provide for an estimated 5,400 new Cal Grant A and B awards and another $10 million increases the Cal Grant A and B maximum-award levels for tuition to approximately $7,164. This latter change will increase the tuition buying power of the Cal Grants to an estimated 45 percent of average tuition charges in the independent institutions.

This report shows that California higher education fares better in the 1996-97 budget than at any other time this decade. This year's $6 billion State General Fund commitment to postsecondary education marks the first time these funds have exceeded the prior all-time high point recorded in fiscal year 1990-91. The higher-than-anticipated tax revenues being produced by the present economic recovery give California a better chance to prepare its public and private postsecondary education systems for "Tidal Wave II," the half-million additional students expected to become eligible for enrollment in the State's colleges and universities by early in the next century.

The Commission reviewed this report on August 26, 1996.

Related Topics: Budgeting and Financing of Higher Education

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