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Got the Monday blues? Start your week off right with a helping of useful information and informed opinion. 

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For the Week of February 07, 2011

The student newspaper at UC Davis, the Aggie, reports that UC is now being audited by California's Bureau of State Audits, after the bureau approved Sen. Leland Yee's (D-San Francisco) audit request this month. Under the microscope will be executive compensation, and the lower wages of many frontline employees. The process is expected to take two months.

“A national campaign is now fully launched to make local public-sector employees pick up a major share of the costs of economic crisis,” write US economists Richard and Max Fraad Wolff in the UK-based Guardian, in an article titled The Consequences of our Tax Cowardace. “If we permit public-sector workers to be scapegoated for state and city budget crises, we all stand to lose.”

Meanwhile, this Reuters article, which includes a terrific photo of UC Berkeley students making their voices heard on budget cuts, charts some of the spent down “rainy day” funds around the nation.

On the pension front, state senator Noreen Evans tells the California Progress Report that “requiring state employees to enter into 401(k)-style defined contribution retirement plan would put public employees at the mercy of Wall Street, and would represent a major step back to retirement insecurity, not reform."

The Los Angeles Times reports that civil libertarians and educators are extremely concerned about developments in the case of 11 UC Irvine and Riverside student demonstrators, some of whom are being charged with misdemeanor conspiracy counts by the Orange County district attorney for their roles in a campus political demonstration.

Listeners and staff at Berkeley’s historic KPFA radio continue in their fight against financial mismanagement and staff layoffs. This Tuesday (2/8) the Berkeley city council will discuss a resolution on the matter; management previously refused the city’s offer to help mediate the conflict. On Saturday (2/12), listeners have announced a public event to help save the station. KPFA is one of the few media outlets to offer regular, in-depth coverage of UC employees’ issues as part of its extensive news, labor and public affairs programming.

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