In this Issue:
- ACTION ALERT: Tell Federal Lawmakers that Every Student Counts
- COVID-19 in the Capitol
- Community College Budget Pending August Revise, Federal Stimulus, Proposition 15
- SAVE THE DATE: October 19-23 is Undocumented Student Action Week
- Join Us for our Next Webinar: Tuesday, August 18 at 11:00 a.m.
- Federal Grant Opportunities
- Upcoming Events
ACTION ALERT: Tell Federal Lawmakers that Every Student Counts
Congress is now debating whether further support of higher education will be distributed on a student headcount or full-time equivalent student (FTES) basis. Since the vast majority of community college students attend part-time, the only equitable method is headcount.
California Community Colleges were harmed in the last round of stimulus because Congress went with the FTES model. Without additional federal dollars that count every student, our system will sustain an additional $791.1 million in state budget deferrals.
The time to act is now. Tell your members of Congress to count every student because every student counts. Federal dollars for higher education must work on a headcount basis.
While Senators Feinstein and Harris and most of the California congressional delegation have expressed support for more federal assistance, they need to hear from community colleges on why student headcount is the only fair and equitable policy to follow. Contact Senators Feinstein and Harris, along with your congressional representative, with this fast and easy-to-use form.
COVID-19 in the Capitol
Several legislators and their staff tested positive for COVID-19 during the July recess. This has compressed an already shortened legislative session into a five-week process in what normally takes several months. Each policy committee hearing is generally meeting only once for the rest of the legislative session, typically lasting many hours.
At this time, there are few active bills of interest to community colleges, which League staff is monitoring and will report back on their disposition. Legislation of note is listed below:
AB 2884 (Berman) – Lottery Dollars
Would permit lottery dollars to be spent on student basic needs such as food and housing assistance.
Location: Senate Committee on Governmental Organization
AB 2416 (Gabriel) – Satisfactory Academic Progress
Would require colleges to consider homelessness as a mitigating factor when considering appeals for students who fail to maintain satisfactory academic progress.
Location: Senate Appropriations Committee
AB 1460 (Weber) – Ethnic Studies
Would require the California State University make a three-unit ethnic studies course as a graduation requirement.
Location: On Governor’s Desk
SB 1173 (Durazo) – Employee Info
Would permit the Public Employment Relations Board to assess penalties on public employers, including community colleges, if they do not send correct new and current employee contact information on a specified basis to their collective bargaining units.
Location: Assembly Committee on Appropriations
Community College Budget Pending August Revise, Federal Stimulus, Proposition 15
Reflecting on the uniqueness of the times, this past June’s passage of the 2020-21 California Budget Act was not the final word on community colleges for the upcoming fiscal year.
With the deadline in state tax collection delayed by three months from April to July, this year's May Revise used for the budget was only an estimate. Actual revenues would not be counted for two months after the budget had already been passed in what is being labeled, an August Revise. With fiscal data pending from the upcoming August Revise, policymakers have begun discussing items for a “Budget Bill Junior.” Based on preliminary conversations in the Capitol, The League is not anticipating major changes to the community college budget in the Budget Bill Junior. We will nonetheless keep you informed of developments in this area.
Notwithstanding the August Revise, the Budget Act for community college was, in part, premised on another round of federal assistance. Of the $1.45 billion in Budget Act deferrals to the community colleges, up to $791 million can be bought down, or “triggered off” by additional federal support. The US Senate is now discussing this possibility with one of the issues for higher education being distribution on a headcount or FTES basis (The League has joined other community college advocates across the country in supporting headcount).
Also, in November voters will be asked to weigh in on Proposition 15, the Schools and Communities First Act, which remains the other fiscal wildcard for community colleges. By taxing large commercial property at market value rather than purchase price, community colleges and K-12 would share in 40 percent of the generated funds, which, according to the Legislative Analyst’s Office, is anticipated in the annual range of $6.5 billion-$11 billion. Unlike the federal action noted above, the revenues generated by Proposition 15 would be ongoing in nature and extremely important to community colleges. The League strongly supports this initiative and encourages widespread involvement in the campaign to promote its passage.
Finally, amidst the economic uncertainty, the Legislative Analyst’s Office has provided mixed news on tax collection. While daily revenue collection for the first 15 days of April through July is down from last year by 13 percent ($4 billion), personal income and corporate tax collections from April 1 through July 31 of this year have exceeded projection by five percent ($1.3 billion).
SAVE THE DATE: October 19-23 is Undocumented Student Action Week
Undocumented Student Action Week has been scheduled for October 19-23, 2020! Please save the date and stay tuned for programming, resources, and suggested advocacy and support activities curated by our Action Week partners: California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office, the Community College League of California, the Foundation for California Community Colleges, Immigrants Rising, and the Student Senate for California Community Colleges.
As we continue to plan for Undocumented Student Action Week (USAW), we invite students, faculty, staff, and administrators from across the California Community Colleges to participate in the planning of this action week by completing a quick survey. Aside from legislative and financial aid updates, please share what topics you would like to see addressed during our USAW webinars. The deadline to complete the survey is August 19th, 2020.
College coordinators will be contacted in the coming weeks as we prepare a robust guide of activities. If you have questions or comments, please let us know via email at ActionWeek@foundationccc.org.
Join Us for our Next Webinar: Tuesday, August 18 at 11:00 a.m.
Join the League's Government Relations Team for our monthly webinars. Receive important information regarding legislation and proposals discussed in Sacramento and Washington, D.C. that will impact you, your students, and your institution.
Every Third Tuesday of the Month, 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Telephone Number: (646) 876-9923 or (669) 900-6833
Meeting ID: 623 780 059
Be sure to register in advance for this meeting. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email with information about joining the webinar.
2020 Webinar Schedule:
Tuesday, August 18
Tuesday, September 15
Tuesday, October 20
Federal Grant Opportunities
Presented by Downs Government Affairs
The League, in partnership with Downs Government Affairs, provides a list of federal grants to assist your community college in improving its programs and services. If you have any questions about the following grants, please feel free to reach out to Thomas Downs at TCDowns@downsgovaffairs.com.
For a full list of federal grants available to community colleges, visit our Federal Grants page at www.ccleague.org/federal-grant-opportunites
Board of Governors Meeting
ACCT Leadership Congress
Oct. 5–8 | Virtual Conference
2020 CCLC Annual Convention
Nov. 17–20 | Virtual Conference
For more information, contact the League's Government Relations and Communications staff:
Andrew Martinez, Director of Government Relations | firstname.lastname@example.org
Ryan McElhinney, Policy and Advocacy Manager | email@example.com
Laura Murrell, Communications Manager | firstname.lastname@example.org
Rina Kasim, Member Resources Associate | email@example.com
Gerson Liahut-Sanchez, Government Relations & Communications Fellow | firstname.lastname@example.org