The University of California (UC) last week came up with US$200 million to finance research and medical facilities despite a state-wide budget catastrophe (see Nature 460, 441; 2009).

Of the ten UC campuses, eight will receive funds. Santa Cruz tops the list of research allotments, receiving $64 million for a biomedical science facility, Irvine wins $5 million for biological, engineering and computer sciences, and Riverside gets $4.6 million for equipment to stock newly completed materials-science and engineering buildings.

Slashing $813 million last month from its $3.2-billion annual budget, the UC system has forced staff to take unpaid leave and had halted building work. The $200 million was made available on 4 August after the UC system secured a commercial bank loan to buy bonds from the state of California — which used the financing to restart stalled infrastructure projects.