According to this article in the Huffington Post it is quite a bit cheaper to attend Harvard or Yale the big Ivy League schools than to attend a public university in California.
A family of 4 with parents a high school student and a 14 year old who make 130 k a year and receiving typical financial aid would pay about $17,000 for total expenses at Harvard. At Cal State they would pay 24,000 and at U of California at Santa Cruz about 33,000. Berkeley is a bit cheaper at about 19,500. Of course it is probably more difficult to get in to Berkeley and also to get into Harvard or Yale.
Dean Kulju of financial aid director of the California State System notes that tuition fees have doubled since 2007. Students have protested a number of times about the changes. However bonds issued by the system were well received. Even though funding is decreasing analysts remarked that the system could always gain revenue by increasing fees!
In 2011-2012 cuts the public universities lost more than one billion dollars in support from the state. Another 300 million is to be cut also as revenues are lower than projected.
Since 2009, public universities in the state have lost $2 billion and community colleges have had $695 million cut from their budgets. For more see the full article here. Perhaps California will become the largest exporter of university students in the U.S.