Yesterday, California voters decided whether or not our state would raise taxes over the next seven years in order to fund education in California. Proposition 30, the tax measure proposed by Gov. Jerry Brown, raises the state sales tax by a penny for every $4 spent over the next four years, while increasing income tax on high earners ($250,000 annually or more) for seven years in order to generate $6 billion per year for California public schools and universities.
It passed. Educators and students are relieved.
Fifty-four percent of Californians ultimately voted yes on Prop 30, which is a huge win for the state’s already struggling education system, as having to make due over the next seven years without that revenue would have been extremely difficult. After it passed, the University of California system pledged that they would not raise tuition for the spring 2013 semester because of the incoming revenue.
Sherry Lansing, chairwoman of the UC Board of Regents, released this statement today:
“I am thrilled that California voters have passed Proposition 30. This victory will certainly help us in our battle to restore fiscal stability to the University of California. I am deeply grateful to all who advocated for Proposition 30, especially the students who worked so incredibly hard to get out the vote, and the many faculty members and alumni who argued so eloquently for its passage.”
Prop 30′s rival measure, Prop 38 was rejected: this tax measure would have increased almost all Californian’s income taxes over the next 12 years — most of the revenue would have gone toward public schools, but a portion of it would have gone toward California’s general fund to decrease state debt.
While California public schools’ budgets are going to remain tight, the passing of Prop 30 is a good start in investing money back in the state’s education system. L.A. Unified Superintendent John Deasy also released a statement this morning on the impact Prop 30 will have on California public school districts:
“It is apparent that the voters are aware of the devastating cuts schools districts have taken the past 5 years. They have said enough is enough. These funds, from Proposition 30, will better equip us to provide a quality education to all LAUSD youth over the next several years and begin the road back to fiscal recovery. We look forward in the next several years to begin to restore some of the programs and valued employees, which were previously cut by the devastating fiscal situation in California.”