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UC Berkeley Students Seek Tuition Cuts After Prop. 30 Passes

BERKELEY (KCBS) — Hundreds of students at UC Berkeley walked out of class and marched in the rain Thursday, demanding that their tuition go down following the passage of Proposition 30.

Voters approved the measure in Tuesday’s election, which raises state sales taxes by a quarter cent and income taxes among people earning more than $250,000 a year. While Proposition 30 is expected to bring in enough money to prevent tuition increases this year, University of California and California State University officials said next year will be another story.

“The Regents are actually talking about a six percent tuition hike regardless of whether we get that funding or not,” said sophomore Maggie Hardy.

She said students won’t tolerate the state not giving UC and CSU money from Prop. 30 they are expecting.

“We just want to make sure that the UC Regents and the California legislature get the message,” Hardy added.

UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Birgeneau said future tuition hikes are still inevitable, and a tuition cut would make it harder for low and middle income students to attend UC for free.

“It would do a huge damage to low-income students because a significant part of their financial aid comes from students of privileged background,” Birgeneau said.

Protests are scheduled to continue at next week’s UC Regents meeting at UCSF, where there will be a vote on raising some of next year’s fees.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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