Monday Memo
For the Week of March 27, 2017
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US science agencies face deep cuts under the Trump administration’s budget, a change the Washington Post calls “seismic” and the Atlantic calls “sweeping.”  A New York Times editorial says the budget “sacrifices American innovation” and shortchanges basic scientific research.

Scientists are organizing to fight back, and one visible part of that will be the March for Science planned for Washington DC and many other cities on Saturday, April 22. UPTE members are preparing to join marches in several cities, and have made available a downloadable flyer which you can share with your coworkers. For a color poster or button, contact your local.

A Stockton Democrat “is proposing to make public colleges and universities tuition-free for all Californians, and wants to tax millionaires to do it,” reports the Los Angeles Times. Assemblymember Susan Talamantes Eggman proposes a 1% tax on incomes over $1 million to pay for tuition and fees for in-state students. Her measure requires a constitutional amendment to get voters’ approval and buy-in.

march for science
UC clerical workers, who are represented by the Teamsters, have signed a tentative agreement with UC for 3 percent wage increases each year over the next 5 years, reports the Daily Bruin. The agreement, which still must be ratified by members, also includes a two-tier pension, with employees hired after last July 1 given the choice of being on UCRS or a 401(k) plan.

Following a public records request, the Sacramento Bee reported that the university spent almost $1 million investigating ethics violations by former UC Davis chancellor Linda Katehi. Katehi was snared in a scandal last year and forced to resign in August.

Friday’s Orange County Register carried yet another story on UC sexual harassment cases in recent years, including one case at UC Irvine in which a staff member filed 26 complaints against a former dean. NBC Bay Area reports that a new harassment complaint was filed last week against prominent UC Berkeley philosophy professor John Searle by a former research assistant.

Another investigation at UC Berkeley has found that outgoing chancellor Nicholas Dirks improperly accepted free university benefits, including fitness center memberships, training, and transfer of exercise equipment to his house from the gym.

The Los Angeles Times editorialized in support of UC president Janet Napolitano’s plan to cap out-of-state enrollment at 20%. Napolitano will travel to Mexico this week to reassure leaders there that UC remains committed to academic collaboration, despite the Trump administration’s posture.
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