Tuition at the California State University (CSU) system increased from $1,428 per year in 2001-2 to $5,472 in 2011, with another 9% rate hike planned for the fall of 2012. Because of budget cuts and financial insecurity, the university has also cut course offerings and services. Yet in that same 10-year period, CSU spent over $2 million renovating eight university-owned presidential residences, including such extras as expanding garages and hiring interior designers, according to a report this week in the Bay Citizen.
In 2012, alone, CSU spent over $400,000 remodeling presidential homes at CSU Fullerton and CSU Northridge, in the Los Angeles Area. In 2011, it spent $257,000 on kitchen upgrades and swimming pool replastering at San Diego State, and another $230,000 on kitchen upgrades and lighting at Cal Poly San Luis Obsipo. Cal Poly also spent $200,000 on renovations in 2010--$831,000 total since 2004, 99% of which was paid for through state funding.
11 university presidents live in these lavish homes at tax-payers’ expense. Another 12 university presidents are getting $60,000 per year in housing allowances to covering living costs off campus. All this is on top of their six-figure salaries (some have also received raises), which alone ought to be sufficient to live comfortably within easy commuting distance of any of the CSU campuses.