Fair was the key word as students and faculty gathered to raise awareness about budget cuts in the California State Education system Monday afternoon at the University Room.
The Faculty Association sponsored the meet and greet with the later rally as part of Democratic majority leader Senator Alberto Torrico’s campaign to pass Assembly Bill 656, also known as Fair Share for Fair Tuition.
The bill would put a 9.9% tax oil companies who draw from California’s oil, raising $1 billion dedicated to education.
California is the only state not taxing oil companies.
University of Texas system has been funded by oil companies for years and Alaska has a 25% tax in place.
San Jose State University has a $44 million budget deficit this year that is expected to get worse next year.
Student fees increased 30% this fall and faculty took a 10% pay cut by way of furlough days, where classes are cancelled and teachers are forbidden from touching their work.
“I’m getting paid 10% less to teach you the same curriculum in less time,” said Edward Collins, a part-time geography lecturer.
Torrico spoke shortly about creating grassroots support to help the bill succeed through the Fair Share for Fair Tuition Facebook page and by sending cards to Governor Schwarzenegger.
He also visited California State University East Bay earlier that morning and would be visiting six more schools by the end of the week to spread the word of his bill.
“California is spending more money on prisons that education.” Torrico said. “This has got to change.”