Budget Subcommittee Chair Portantino Proud Of Budget Subcommittee's Funding Plan
Sacramento, CA – Senator Anthony J. Portantino closed out the State Senate Budget Subcommittee on Education last week with several important additions and ratifications to the Governor’s recently released May revised budget.
“It is our subcommittee’s job to review the Governor’s plan for education in California and reject, approve or improve on his proposals. I was very pleased with the committee’s work and proud of my colleagues for preparing this plan for our students and families. From here our plan goes to the full Senate Budget Committee for deliberation and completion,” commented Portantino.
Budget Subcommittee Highlights Include
Increasing Cal Grants for Community College Students: The proposal is included in SB 539, authored by Senate Pro Tem Kevin De León and Senator Portantino to include additional funding for transportation and other costs associated with attending college. Funding transportation costs is a top priority for Portantino and becomes increasingly more important as efforts to fund student transportation needs have stalled and transit pass programs are regional and not statewide as this plan is.
Funding Childcare: A top priority of the Legislative Women’s Caucus, Governor Brown restored the proposed cut, which is in line with a budget agreement negotiated last year.
After School Education and Safety (ASES) Funding: The committee disagreed with the Governor’s proposal to not include a cost-of-living increase or additional funding for ASES. The committee voted to include $9 million dollars for the COLA and an addition $25 million for the program. Portantino recently toured a program in Monrovia and invited two elementary students to the capitol to testify before his committee. The committee agreed with the young advocates and added the funding.
University of California Accountability: The subcommittee built upon efforts of the Governor and State Auditor to bring accountable to the University of California Office of the President in the wake of the recent State Audit. The senate committee included strong language in the budget to increase accountability and transparency. It also accepted the Governor’s proposal to hold back $50 million dollars from the UC office of the President until all of the State Auditor’s recommendations are fulfilled.
Summer Institute for Emerging Managers and Leaders (SIEML): The Subcommittee was pleased to include continuous funding of the institute initiated by Portantino when he was in the State Assembly. The SIEML institute is a summer program for undergraduate students from Historically Black Colleges and Hispanic Serving Institutes at the seven University of California Business Schools. The funding is intended to fund the school-based institute and bring accountability to the Office of the President to administer the program.
Umbilical Cord Blood Collection: The subcommittee accepted the Governor’s proposal to create a continuous appropriation to the University of California Davis Cord Blood Collection Program. This is another successful program initiated by Portantino that is providing life-saving cord blood stem cells to California’s diverse population.
Education Training for Updated Curriculum: Over the past several years, the legislature has passed several bills that create new curricula for the study of several important social science additions. The California Department of Education has adopted these proposals into an updated History-Social Science curriculum framework with guidelines for public school teachers. The Department of Education does not have the budget to offer statewide teacher training and curriculum implementation. The sub-committee included $16 million dollars to implement this training. This is of particular interest to residents of the 25th Senate District as the study of the Armenian Genocide is one of the subject areas.
Restoring Cal Grants for Non-Profit Colleges: Non-profit colleges like USC and the University of La Verne serve a significantly more diverse student population than the University of California. In fact, 47% of the students at these non-profit colleges are Latino students. The Governor had originally proposed to only partially fund Cal Grants for these students, then added some restrictions that would make it difficult for students at these schools. The Subcommittee approved full funding of the Cal Grants but rejected the strings attached to them.
Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF): The Committee accepted the increase in LCFF and LCFF implementation, which will help many of the school districts across the 25th Senate District and the San Gabriel Valley.
Prop 98: After proposing that the Governor not defer nearly a billion dollars in Prop 98 funding in the January budget, the Committee accepted the Governor’s May revised plan to fully fund this money to K–12 districts. The committee deferred action to the full Senate Budget Committee on the Governor’s plan to add an additional billion dollars to K–12 but only make this money available in 2019.
“Although I’m very proud of our work thus far, there is much more to be done. I’m happy that the Governor is setting aside additional funding for K–12 education but I don’t like the idea of deferring it until 2019. Since I’m strongly supporting further negotiation on this item but had to close the committee ahead of next week’s full deliberations, I left this item open with the optimism we can work out a better solution with the Governor’s Office,” concluded Portantino.
Contact: Darla Dyson, (818) 409-0400
Sen. Portantino represents nearly 930,000 people in the 25th Senate District, which includes Altadena, Atwater Village, Bradbury, Burbank, Claremont, Duarte, Glendale, Glendora, La Cañada Flintridge, La Crescenta, La Verne, Lake View Terrace, Los Feliz, Monrovia, Montrose, Pasadena, San Dimas, San Marino, Shadow Hills, Sierra Madre, South Pasadena, Sunland-Tujunga, and Upland.