Monday Memo: news & views about working at UC
For the Week of March 05, 2012

March 1 was a day of action around the state in defense of affordable public education. Students shut down the UC Santa Cruz campus with the help of a 100-foot banana slug, despite one man driving his car into demonstrators. Across northern California, demonstrations took place at San Francisco State, UC Berkeley, Cal State Monterey, Sonoma State, and elsewhere. At UCLA, students set up tents in a “Festival of Resistance,” while in San Diego, students demonstrated at UCSD, San Diego City College, San Diego State University, and Mesa College. Occupy Education
photo by Tanya Smith
Thousands are converging on Sacramento on Monday, March 5, as part of the Occupy Education movement. ReFund California Coalition is one of the groups bringing citizens to Sacramento to demand that the 1 percent pay their fair share to support the education, jobs, and services that make their wealth possible. Occupy Education California has also been marching toward Sacramento. Buses will be bringing participants from all across the state.

The first investigation of the November UC Davis pepper-spraying incident, by former California Supreme Court associate justice Cruz Reynoso, will be released on the UC Davis website on Tuesday, March 6.

The arraignment of the UC regents, UCLA, and chemistry professor Patrick Harran for three felony charges related to the January 2009 death of research assistant Sheri Sangji was rescheduled on February 2 for the last time and will take place on Wednesday, March 7. You can still take action today to press the LA County DA for justice and a safe working environment.

Harvard is now cheaper than Cal State East Bay for middle-income California students. So are Princeton, Yale, and Williams College, reported the San Jose Mercury News. “Students are paying more for their education than California is, a shocking turnaround for the state that essentially invented the modern public university.”

Officials at San Francisco State University have noted that California is now spending only half on higher education of what it spends on prisons.

Meanwhile, the Cal State system is threatening to withhold $7 million from the CSU Northridge campus because it enrolled too many students than the cutback target imposed by the state administration.

California Senate Republicans blocked the confirmation of a Brown appointee, Herbert Carter, because they objected that he, as board chairman, had approved a 12 percent increase in student fees last year while also giving the president of San Diego State a $400,000 pay package, $100,000 more than his predecessor. In the wake of that scandal, CSU trustees have adopted a new policy on executive pay that limits pay increases of newly hired presidents to 10 percent more than their predecessors, with a ceiling of $325,000 in public funds.

Governor Brown and Senate President Pro Tem Darrel Steinberg are increasing their efforts to get the California Federation of Teachers and others to drop the Millionaire’s Tax and other tax initiatives competing with Brown's out of fear that having “more than one tax measure on the ballot could cause an overwhelmed public to reject them all.” 

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