University budget committee plans to submit proposal

State Hornet Staff

After surviving more than six years of budget cuts, Sacramento State departments are taking advantage of an estimated 2 percent increase in funds based on Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposed state budget.

According to the University Budget Advisory Committee, in charge of analyzing the university general fund and providing recommendations to Sacramento State President Alexander Gonzalez, the amount of one-time expense requests has increased from the previous year.

One-time expenses are requests from university departments in need of projects and renovations that only need to be funded once, such as the software improvements requested by Student Affairs.

Fred Baldini, the committee chair of the University Budget Advisory Committee, said the increase in one-time expense requests has a direct correlation with a projected increase in state funds.

“It is different now,” Baldini said. “This was the year you can catch up or try to get ahead on some things you haven’t been able to. We are no longer going to divisions saying how are you going to cut 12 percent of your budget?”

Angel Rodriguez, a Sacramento State junior majoring in theatre and engineering, said an increase in funding is good news but should only be going toward students and faculty.

“Why is there so much money being dispersed to the president’s office?” Rodriguez said. “The money should go towards something that will benefit me.”

Aside from academics, Rodriguez said some funds should go into making the campus more visually pleasing to those visiting the campus.

Specifically he said the fountain outside the library is really plain but has the potential to be a beautiful landmark that would inspire more students to enroll at Sac State.

“It is really important for getting people to come to the campus,” Rodriguez said. “People take pictures of the campus all the time. Where are they going to take the pictures? You go to Davis and you see the heads, you go to Berkeley and see the bell. What’s the landmark on our campus? I feel like there is potential somewhere on this beautiful campus. The things we have, the various art statues, they are kind of pointless.”

In studying two opposite worlds of art and science concurrently, Rodriguez said over the years  he has seen a distinct difference in the distribution of funds between the two colleges.

“I see more struggles in theatre and dance department then I do with the engineering,” Rodriguez said. “The facilities are much more equipped. Theatre has only one acting lab and one dance space inside of Shasta while engineering has multiple science labs.”

Kristina Vieira, a senior business major and student representative of UBAC, said even though this was her first time on the committee, she has heard from other members that the process was much easier due to the proposed increase.

“This year the committee was not having to prioritize as much, in order for the school to operate on the minimal resources like in the past,” Vieira said. “Though there can still be changes made by the president and the governor’s May revise, but the May revise could mean even more money.”

While the revised state budget included very little change in higher education funding, Baldini senses any changes will not negatively alter the plans set for the CSU.

“I know the CSU has been very active on the capitol but I don’t have a crystal ball,” Baldini said.”Higher education isn’t the only person standing at the state capital. A lot of people are. The state also has cuts.”