This was published in The Council of UC Faculty Associations as an open letter to students by Bob Meister, a UCSC professor.
For UC this means increasing tuition for its own sake, because every tuition dollar can be added directly to the pledged collateral. It also means cutting spending when and where it can get away with doing so. What this is means is that state budget cuts are actually good for UC’s bond rating, because they allow UC to raise tuition simultaneously. Construction funding is a reason why the Regent’s want to raise tuition, perhaps the most important reason, but, as students, you are unlikely to go along with big increases to fund UC’s list of construction projects. Cutting back on instructional budgets is how they get you to agree to higher tuition without telling you how much will go to fund construction. On my campus, the most visible instructional cuts typically become permanent, and we’re told that without higher tuition they would have been worse. Campus administrations can always say that no particular tuition increase is ever large enough to reverse whatever instructional cuts were imposed to persuade you that it was necessary. If you accept this claim, you’ll never question how much of your tuition is used to fund construction, and whether you would have found an increase justified had you known.