While most of the attention around the protests at this week’s UC Regents’ meeting at UCSF has been focused on sexual battery allegations against student Regent Jesse Cheng, mass worker protests have been taking place on campuses including Santa Cruz, Berkeley, Davis, and UCLA. Another group of a few dozen workers gathered at UCSF to protest the newest appointment to the Board of Regents, David Crane, an opponent of collective bargaining in the public sector.
Meanwhile, inside the meeting things were grim. As our comrades over at Reclaim UC point out, additional fee hikes — on top of last year’s 32 percent and last semester’s 8 percent — are on the horizon. According to the Oakland Tribune,
Among four scenarios discussed Wednesday, only one would come close to bridging the deficit: annual tuition and state funding increases of 8 percent.
And according to the Daily Cal, at least one Regent is explicitly advocating privatization of the UC system, and banker turned administrator Nathan Brostrom is talking about 12 percent fee hikes over an unspecified period of time:
To address this funding chasm, several regents advocated for “innovative, out-of-the box thinking,” a phrase frequently heard in regents’ meetings since early 2009. Regent Norman Pattiz suggested at the meeting creating a team of salesmen that would pitch UC’s services to the private sector.
[Executive Vice President for Business Operations Nathan] Brostrom also outlined a model which would rely on increased tuition levels at rates of up to 12 percent per year to fill the funding gap, depending on the level of future state contributions to the university.