With tension among applicants and complaints among California’s taxpayers, the state Senate proposed to cut back the number of nonresident students admitted into the University of California to make more space for in-state students. 

The new proposal would gradually limit the UC’s out-of-state and international student admissions to only 10 percent by 2033, almost half of the current average.

The Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Subcommittee submitted the proposal on May 12 to the California legislature. 

“It’s not about ending out-of-state students — they really add to the mix and the educational experience,” said subcommittee chair John Laird (D-Santa Cruz) to the LA Times. “We just have to make sure there’s enough space for in-state students.”

To meet the 10 percent average, the UCs that have over 10 percent nonresident students will see their numbers drop, including UC Los Angeles, UC Berkeley, and UC San Diego. The UCs that have under 10 percent — UC Santa Cruz, UC Merced and UC Riverside — will need to increase their nonresident enrollment to 10 percent.

The UC system, which already has some of the most applied-to colleges in the world, saw a record number of applicants this past application cycle. In 2020, the UC had nearly 250,000 applicants for incoming first-year and transfer students, surpassing the spaces available for students by 25,000. In comparison, the UC only accepted 119,000 freshmen in 2019. 

The UC is resisting the proposal due to the diversity and campus culture that nonresidents bring and the financial benefits of charging out-of-state tuition, which reels in more than $1 billion a year, according to the UC Office of the President. 

The state Senate vocalized plans to compensate the university for loss of income from out-of-state tuition, independent from Calif. Governor Gavin Newsom’s donation of more than $807 million to the university due to a surplus for the state.  

Of the more than $807 million given to the University of California by Governor Gavin Newsom, more than $506 million will be used to fund campus operations such as medical training and student needs, and $300 million is restoring previous budget cuts to the UC from the 2020 budget.

This $300 million restored funding will be used to support the upgrades, development, and expansion of projects intended to increase energy efficiency. A statement from UCOP mentions that this funding will provide additional support for student mental health services and technology assistance.

The Senate is still in negotiations with the UC on the exact numbers of the proposal. The proposal must be finalized before June 15, the legislative deadline for budgetary matters.