It’s Time To Reinvest In Public Higher Education

Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine
Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine co-chair the California Coalition for Public Higher Education. Ackerman is a former California State Senator and Assemblyman, and Levine is a former U.S. Congressman and State Assemblyman.

The news from UC Berkeley is ominous—one of the world’s great research universities is facing a $150 million deficit and Chancellor Nicholas Dirks has announced a process to “reimagine” the campus in light of the “new normal”. That re-imagining will inevitably mean cutbacks in staffing levels and curriculum and undercut UC Berkeley’s ability to deliver […]

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California Higher Ed Still Number One, But Can We Stay On Top?

Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine
Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine co-chair the California Coalition for Public Higher Education. Ackerman is a former California State Senator and Assemblyman, and Levine is a former U.S. Congressman and State Assemblyman.

The numbers are in and California still boasts the nation’s finest public higher education system.  That is the good news.  The bad news is that we cannot afford to continue underfunding of public higher education without jeopardizing quality and access.  A new report from the Public Policy Institute of California projects that the state will […]

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Budget Negotiators Should Recognize Higher Education Needs

Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine
Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine co-chair the California Coalition for Public Higher Education. Ackerman is a former California State Senator and Assemblyman, and Levine is a former U.S. Congressman and State Assemblyman.

It’s that time of year again in Sacramento as the temperature begins to heat up along with the business of putting together the 2015-16 State Budget. This week, Governor Brown will lay out his revised Budget blueprint based on up-dated revenue results and projections. That’s when the real deliberations can begin. The Budget plan unveiled […]

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Some Encouraging Words For Higher Education

Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine
Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine co-chair the California Coalition for Public Higher Education. Ackerman is a former California State Senator and Assemblyman, and Levine is a former U.S. Congressman and State Assemblyman.

“We have to invest in science and technology and our universities and that’s building for the future, not stealing from it.” Those words were spoken by Governor Jerry Brown on Meet the Press.   For those of us who believe that higher education needs to be a priority in California, those were welcome words. It is […]

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Don’t Sell Public Higher Education Short

Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine
Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine co-chair the California Coalition for Public Higher Education. Ackerman is a former California State Senator and Assemblyman, and Levine is a former U.S. Congressman and State Assemblyman.

Higher education has jumped to the top rung of issues in California. That’s the good news. The bad news is that California’s three-tiered system of public higher education is badly underfunded with dire consequences for Californians—now and in the future. Gov. Brown said in his inaugural address that he does not want students to be […]

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Higher Education Veto Is Penny Wise And Pound Foolish

Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine
Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine co-chair the California Coalition for Public Higher Education. Ackerman is a former California State Senator and Assemblyman, and Levine is a former U.S. Congressman and State Assemblyman.

Governor Jerry Brown has been rightfully praised for his fiscal prudence and discipline.  Sometimes, however, it is possible to be Pound wise and Penny foolish.  That would appear to be the case with the Governor’s veto of legislation to provide $100 million for the University of California and the California State University system. The money […]

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Higher Education Funding is Unfinished Business for State Legislature

Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine
Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine co-chair the California Coalition for Public Higher Education. Ackerman is a former California State Senator and Assemblyman, and Levine is a former U.S. Congressman and State Assemblyman.

Speaker of the Assembly Toni Atkins and her colleagues in the Assembly Budget Committee deserve kudos for passing SB872 to restore $100 million in desperately needed funding for California State University and the University of California. The Senate Budget Committee, in rejecting SB 872, got it wrong. Speaker Atkins understands public higher education is our […]

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The State Budget Deal: Sacramento Keeps Its Eyes Off The Higher Education Ball, Yet Again

Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine
Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine co-chair the California Coalition for Public Higher Education. Ackerman is a former California State Senator and Assemblyman, and Levine is a former U.S. Congressman and State Assemblyman.

While not without controversy, the recent budget agreement between Governor Brown and the state Legislature was welcomed positively by the media and public. The state’s coffers are filling back up. The deal was completed on time. We have a needed rainy-day fund. While these developments are positive, however, we lament yet another missed opportunity in […]

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California Higher Education Needs a New Strategy of Reinvesting in the Workforce

Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine
Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine co-chair the California Coalition for Public Higher Education. Ackerman is a former California State Senator and Assemblyman, and Levine is a former U.S. Congressman and State Assemblyman.

The Little Hoover Commission, the state’s independent oversight agency, spent more than 12 months and nearly 75 pages on a new report identifying the shortcomings in California’s higher education system and calling for a new strategy to develop the highly educated workforce needed to grow and sustain our economy. Few will argue with the commission’s […]

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Higher Education Resonates on Both Sides of the Aisle

Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine
Dick Ackerman and Mel Levine co-chair the California Coalition for Public Higher Education. Ackerman is a former California State Senator and Assemblyman, and Levine is a former U.S. Congressman and State Assemblyman.

As the Governor and legislators wrestle with the size of greater than anticipated state revenues and what to do with additional funds, there is one priority where Democrats, Republicans, conservatives, liberals and moderates should be able to come together—public higher education. The state legislative analyst’s office has projected revenues that are $3.2 billion higher than […]

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