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Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, has written to state university chiefs to object to new fee increases after legislators restored and boosted state funding this year to the embattled systems.

During tough budget negotiations, Steinberg said in a letter Thursday, "we provided more than $600 million in additional funding to backfill for cuts made in recent years while also funding for increased enrollment, class sections and vital student services."

"Consequently, I am deeply concerned about the recently adopted fee increased by CSU and UC and the impact they will on our students, their families and our economy," the letter said. "Passing more costs on to students and families threatens to price more Californians out of a quality higher education."

The UC regents on Thursday voted to hike tuition by 8 percent next year - on top of a 32 percent increase approved last year. The California State University board of trustees earlier this month voted to raise fees by 5 percent in January and 10 percent in the fall.

Steinberg's letter is addressed to Russell Gould, chair of the UC regents; Mark Yudof, president of the University of California; Herbert Carter, chair of the CSU board of trustees; and Charles Reed, CSU chancellor.

Read the letter here



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