May AVC Message: A Federal Win, State Budget Upcoming

We’ve won a major battle! Your voices and support for public higher education are working and as a result the Fiscal Year 2017 Omnibus Appropriations Act that passed Congress was very positive for UCLA.

In March, the Trump Administration released the Fiscal Year 2018 budget blueprint that also included a provision to cut $15 billion from non-defense spending in Fiscal Year 2017. Fortunately, Congress rejected this last minute request from the White House and the Omnibus bill provides funding increases to several areas important to UCLA.

The biggest victory is the reinstatement of year-round Pell Grants that will help fill critical funding gaps for students in need and continue to make higher education affordable for students. Approximately 38% of UCLA undergraduate students are Pell Grant recipients.

Another big win for UCLA in the Omnibus comes in the form of federal research funding which includes a $2 billion increase to the National Institutes of Health, a nearly $9 million increase for the National Science Foundation, and $2 million in additional funding each for the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Through this critical federal support, UCLA faculty can continue to pursue their groundbreaking scientific and technological research to help better our state and the nation.

In April, the University of California launched a call-to-action campaign that provided advocates with an opportunity to reach out to their Members of Congress to express their support for federal investment in research. UC advocates sent more than 10,000 messages to Congress through the UC Advocacy Network (UCAN), urging Members to support robust investment in federal research.

Collectively, we have been successful in pushing back on potentially devastating domestic spending cuts and the passing of the Omnibus bill makes us optimistic that our voices will be heard during the Fiscal Year 2018 budget process. However, our job is far from done and we will keep you informed and involved in our advocacy efforts once the President submits to Congress his full, official budget request for Fiscal Year 2018.

Other notes:

• Governor Brown released his May Revision of the FY 2017-2018 State Budget. The University’s budget is contained in the Governor’s budget. Stay tuned as we analyze the Governor’s budget to determine our advocacy efforts.

• Our website unveiled a new series, “Postcard from Sacramento/DC” that will highlight UCLA expertise as staff and faculty visit the respective state and federal capitals. This series gives us a chance to introduce many important faces in the UCLA community, and can provide legislators and the public with previously unknown resources built by these individuals.

• Elsewhere, we provide an audio podcast of a recent Los Angeles City Council District 7 candidate forum, highlight the experience of UC Graduate Research Day, and provide an easy place for you to read the complete UC response to the California state audit report released earlier this spring.

Again, thank you to all our advocates and partners for a successful start to the spring!

Keith S. Parker,

Assistant Vice Chancellor Government & Community Relations

Go Bruins!
Keith S. Parker, AVC

 

Keith S. Parker
Government & Community Relations
Assistant Vice Chancellor

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