Senate Resolutions Address Fee Hikes, UC Commission
At its meeting on November 19, the Faculty Legislature passed two Senate resolutions, one in response to the work of the UC Commission on the Future, and the other to the Regents’ vote last month to increase student fees.
The resolutions were introduced by William Warner and Aranye Fradenburg, professors of English; and Robert Williams, professor of history of art and architecture.
The first resolution calls for the findings of the UC Commission to be “subject to review, debate, and formal ratification by the University community before any policies based on them are implemented.” It also calls for the commission to delay the conclusion of its deliberations and final report to the Regents until such review and ratification have taken place.
Chaired by UC Regents Chair Russell Gould and UC President Mark Yudof, the commission is charged with developing a new vision for the University that affirms its core values of excellence and access, while addressing the financial challenges resulting from declining state funding.
The second resolution expresses the Senate’s opposition to the use of student fee increases to offset budget deficits. According to the resolution, such action “limits access to higher education and requires that large numbers of students and their parents incur long-term debt, thereby betraying the University’s public mission and thus its fundamental purpose.”
Three additional resolutions were deferred until the legislature’s next meeting, which is scheduled for January 14. Those resolutions call for the University to fully disclose its financial records; for the Faculty Senate to “put aside as much of its regular business as possible this year” and focus its attention on the current fiscal crisis; and for the Presidents Task Force on Post Employment Benefits to consider the restoration of public funding as one of the scenarios for the future of UC.