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Cal State to vote on proposed 9% tuition hike

A big turnout of students and labor activists protesting education cuts and rising student fees was expected Wednesday in Long Beach, where California State University trustees are voting on a proposed 9% annual tuition increase next fall.

Cal State leaders said the tuition increase is needed unless the state boosts funding for the university.

Trustees are being asked to approve a budget for 2012-13 that includes a general fund increase of $333 million, including $138 million to buy out a tuition increase.

The funds would be used to restore student access, course sections and student services. If funding is not provided, tuition would increase $498 for full-time undergraduates to $5,970, not including campus-based fees.

The vote comes as students, faculty and labor groups have intensified pressure on University of California and Cal State leaders to oppose further fee hikes and education cuts.

The protest group ReFund California, a coalition of students, teachers and community members, was scheduled to march to financial institutions along Ocean Avenue after the vote, ending at a rally at Wells Fargo.

About 50 protesters were outside Wednesday morning, chanting "Whose university, our university," and "Let us in." Many held signs that read, "Make banks pay."

-- Carla Rivera

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