State politicians may be able to control UC students’ tuition if a bill amendment passes in the State Assembly.
California State Assemblyman Manny Diaz (D-23rd District), along with representatives from the University of California Student Association, California Student Association of Community Colleges and the California State Student Association, unveiled a bill Monday putting tuition raises in the hands of the state legislature.
The bill, authored by Diaz, will amend Assembly Bill 550 to establish a student fee advisory committee in each of the three California higher education institutions. The purpose of the committee will be to keep student fees at an affordable level and to ensure the legislature’s involvement in decisions regarding the raising or lowering of fees.
“Over the past two decades, student fees have increasingly become an obstacle to the state’s mission of access and affordability to public higher education,” a press release from Diaz’ office states. “Over the past decade, despite increases in financial aid, increasing costs of living and higher education have forced students to rely on increasing student loan amounts.”
Tuition for the UC rose this quarter for the first time since the early 1990s. The UC Regents decided to raise tuition starting this quarter due to University budget cuts resulting from the state budget shortfall, projected at $35 billion over the next 16 months.