Don’t Blame UC for Establishing a Reserve

Blame state officials for defunding UC

A state auditor criticized the University of California for establishing a $175 million reserve. But what would you do if the state treated you like this:

And how might you react if over the same period of time the state granted three salary increases to 56,500 Corrections Department employees who now collect more than $7 billion per year in compensation and benefits from a state that appropriates half as much to UC to educate 200,000 undergraduates?

UC’s $175 million reserve is less than one-third of the annual cost increase from just the latest of those three salary increases. It’s just five percent of the annual increase in state spending on pensions. It’s just 1.75% of the annual increase in state spending on healthcare businesses.

During a period in which General Fund revenues went up 28%, state spending on UC went up only 19% while state spending on pensions, healthcare enterprises and Corrections went up 76%, 58% and 32%.

It’s this simple: The state bullies UC because UC isn’t politically powerful like government employees and healthcare enterprises. Citizens and political philanthropists should take note of politicians who fail to support UC and who criticize UC for taking steps to protect itself.