TRAVIS ALLEN, ASSEMBLYMAN, 72nd DISTRICT
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 18, 2016
Assemblyman Travis Allen Introduces College Affordability for Students Legislative Package
Two Bills, The College Affordability and The Textbook Royalty Declaration Acts, Will Make College More Affordable for Californians
SACRAMENTO – Today, Assemblyman Travis Allen (R-Huntington Beach) announced his legislative package to ensure that college remains affordable for all Californians, giving students and parents increased financial certainty when planning for their education.
“California’s students are the future of our great state and the talented workforce that will be tasked to continue the success of previous generations,” said Assemblyman Travis Allen. “This legislative package provides common sense solutions to keep the college costs affordable, while continuing to invest in California’s students and a quality workforce for the future of our economy.”
Assembly Bill 1582, The Textbook Royalty Declaration Act (Asm. Allen and Asm. Harper)
AB 1582, The Textbook Royalty Declaration Act, will simply require college employees to disclose royalties and conflicts of interest on their annual report to the Fair Political Practices Commission. Specifically, AB 1582 will require an employee of a public university to disclose if they received royalties for required course materials they themselves required, or influenced the decision to implement.
“Textbook royalties are being paid on the backs of our hardworking students. With the average cost of textbooks for undergraduate students at $1,298 per semester, it is important that our state fights to keep costs for California students as low as possible,” said Assemblyman Travis Allen. “The Textbook Royalty Declaration Act will ensure full transparency regarding educational expenses and guarantee access to the lowest textbook prices available.”
“Professors should not be allowed to cash in on students, especially when they are already paying higher textbook costs,” said joint author Assemblyman Matthew Harper. “This will promote transparency and keep professor ‘kickbacks’ to a minimum.”
Recent reports reveal that publishers and universities have been using minor revisions to justify labeling instructors as ‘co-authors,’ and funneling royalty money to professors. To date, ethics commissions in 11 states require, at a minimum, disclosure and institutional review of textbook adoption decisions involving royalties. California, however, is currently the only state in the nation that has a specific exemption for textbook adoption decisions at public universities from the state conflict of interest laws.
Assembly Bill 2064, The College Affordability Act
AB 2064, The College Affordability Act, will ensure that tuition is not raised for college students during their four consecutive years in school.
“College tuition and fees in California have more than doubled since 2004, making it significantly more difficult to attend California colleges,” said Assemblyman Travis Allen. “The College Affordability Act will stabilize tuition and fee increases, while reestablishing California’s promise to keep tuition rates consistent and affordable for all students.”
Since the passage of Proposition 30 in November 2012, college tuition rates were ‘frozen’ until the expiration of the Proposition. Immediately after the voters agreed to that deal, there have been constant calls for tuition increases by some administrators and politicians in Sacramento – against the will of the people. AB 2064 will ensure that our state’s record spending reflects a prioritization of affordably educating our college students and stop Sacramento politicians from once again raising tuition rates on California’s next generation of students.
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CONTACT: Stephanie Freedman, (916) 319-2072