How many legislators does it take to craft a bill limiting executive pay at California's universities?
At least four, apparently.
A flurry of bills on that theme have been introduced this week. All are responding to last month's decision by trustees of the California State University to award the new president of San Diego State a salary $100,000 higher than his predecessor's -- at the same meeting they raised student tuition by 12 percent.
The current tally of bills on university executive pay includes these:
Senate Bill X1 25 by Sen. Elaine Alquist, D-Santa Clara, would prevent CSU from giving administrators raises above 10 percent in any year the university increases tuition for students. It would include sitting executives and new hires.
Senate Bill X1 26 by Sen. Ted Lieu, D-Torrance, would limit CSU presidents' pay to 150 percent of the salary earned by California's chief justice, or $343,269 this year; would prohibit pay hikes if tuition has increased within three years; and would compel CSU trustees to give preference to applicants within the CSU system when hiring a campus president.
Senate Bill X1 27 by Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco, would prohibit executive pay raises at CSU and UC in any year the university systems' state funding is reduced.
Assembly Bill X1 39 by Assemblyman Roger Hernández, D-West Covina, would prohibit UC and CSU from using state funds or student fees to give pay raises to administrators in any year the state cuts funding to the university systems. It would also cap salary for CSU presidents at $300,000 and cap salary for UC chancellors at $326,000.