Districts laboring under higher mandated expenses would receive a surprise windfall — pension-cost relief — in Gov. Newsom’s first proposed state budget for 2019-20, which will also provide big spending increases for early and higher education.
Using surplus money from the state’s General Fund, Newsom would wipe out $3 billion of districts’ rising obligations to CalSTRS, the pension fund for teachers and administrators, including $350 million each of the next two fiscal years. If the Legislature passes the budget as proposed, districts will be able to spend that money as they want. The remaining $2.3 billion would reduce districts’ liabilities beyond 2020-21.