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Community College Budgets Slashed

Jessica Flores

Community College Budgets Slashed

CREATED Dec. 14, 2011

PALM DESERT- Governor Brown's midyear budget cuts slashes community college funding by $100 million, passing on increased costs to students. Fees for each unit are climbing by nearly 30 percent, from $36 a unit to $46 a unit.

"But if they keep on increasing it, i don't know where most students are going to go," said College of the Desert student Santiago Ecuembe.

Governor Brown's plan will cut $700,000 from College of the Desert's budget.

"Basically you are making those who can afford it bankrupt," said College of the Desert student Aaron Sargent. 

COD is already struggling to meet a growing demand. The college won't be able to add 300 classes COD officials say it needs.

 "We are kinda stuck in this reducing mode at a time when the demand has never been higher. It's frustrating," said Edwin Deas, COD Vice President of Business Affairs.

More than 10,000 students attend COD, and many hope to save money now to transfer to a four-year university later.

"It's a lot harder when they keep increasing prices here and they're increasing prices at the university level. Either way we we are paying a lot more just to get a good education," said COD student Katie Wright.

With California facing a 12 billion dollar deficit, the Governor says his hands are tied.

"One of the things that will take us out of the recession is an educated workforce, and to be cutting education at this time doesn't seem like good public policy," said Deas.

The Governor expects his total state budget will save the state One billion dollars, and he has signaled he'll make more cuts if Californians don't vote to raise taxes.

 "We either cut or tax. There is no third way," said Brown, during his budget announcement.

Jessica Flores, KMIR6 News.