Email to supporters: With state cuts to higher education leading the news recently, we thought that some explanation of why the issue is so important -- especially this year -- might be helpful. As the largest target in the state's General Fund budget that is "discretionary," and thus can be trimmed by legislators, higher education often faces cuts. This year, the cuts total about $450 million.
Like other states, Colorado faces its second major budget shortfall in less than a decade. But unlike others, we are heading into this deepening economic crisis with one of the smallest budgets in the nation, whether measured by population or the size of the state economy. We already spend less than almost every other state on the public structures and services our future depends on: our schools, colleges, roads and bridges, health care and other assistance for poor families and children.