townhallThe Clog is here in Pauley Ballroom at the Q&A Townhall with the Chancellor. We’ll be liveblogging the events so stay tuned. (Note: the picture is of a pretty town hall in Vienna. It has actually nothing to do with the post. Except that it’s pretty, and I don’t have my camera with me. If you have a better picture, hook us up).

Moving right along…

7:46 p.m. After searching in vain for the past 20 minutes for a good Airbears location in Pauley Ballroom, I’ve determined there isn’t one. If my connection dies, I’ll take to the Clog’s twitter, so try there.

7:52 p.m. Will Smelko is introducing the panel, Chancellor Robert Birgeneau, Executive Vice Chancellor Breslauer, Dean of Students Jonathan Poullard and Erin Gore, assistant vice chancellor of the budget.

7:54 p.m. Definitely heard some boos and hisses for Birgeneau and Breslauer. Harsh.

7:58 p.m. “The funding per student (from the state) is exactly half of what it was twenty years ago” -Birgeneau

8:00 p.m. “What do you do when you find out you’re missing millions of dollars? … it ruins your summer vacation.” – Birgeneau. Oh, Bobby B.

8:03 p.m. Fee increases get booed.

8:04 p.m. Birgeneau says he hopes to cut tens of millions of dollars by improving administrative operations.

8:06 p.m. “This will impact significantly students from middle class families” -Birgeneau on fee increases

8:10 p.m. “We’ve called on the Obama administration … we’ve appealed to them to save public education,” Birgeneau said. “If the the federal government were to invest in public education half of what they spent on AIG, then that would be enough to permanently solve the problem for about the top 20 public research universities.”

8:11 p.m. March on Sacramento planned to demand investment in California public higher education.

8:12 p.m. “I’ve seen it all, but I’ve never seen it this bad”-Breslauer. I’m getting depressed.

8:15 p.m. Did I mention that I got one of those little golf pencils to write a question to the panel with? It was very exciting. If you’ve got a question you’d like me to ask, comment it.

8:20 p.m. Jonathan Poullard says they’re trying to keep campus housing costs stable.

8:30 p.m. “The idea of democratization of the Regents is a canard. The Regents did not bring this upon us.”-Breslauer

8:33 p.m. “I don’t understand the disinvestment by the state. I have some conspiratorial ideas, but they’re kind of paranoid and I don’t think I want to be quoted on them”-Birgeneau

8:35 p.m. “In a place like Berkeley, there’s a tendency to demonize the Republicans, and maybe it’s justified. Don’t quote me on that”-Birgeneau. Whatcha gonna do about it Birgeneau?

8:40 p.m. The Q&A portion started about 15 minutes ago, in case I forgot to mention that.

8:45 p.m. Bearcardo strikes again.

8:54 p.m. “With public funding disappearing at an alarming rate, we appealed to our alumni and our friends … once these funds come to us they in effect become public funding”-Birgeneau

8:56 p.m. “It’s very rare for an individual to come to you and say, ‘here’s a million dollars, what do you want to do with it?’” -Breslauer

8:57 p.m Will Smelko hasn’t said hi to me. Maybe he doesn’t remember me from my ASUC reporting days.

9:00 p.m. One student’s question: “Why does our football coach earn more than any other public employee?”

9:10 p.m. “There’s a certain amount of cynicism that goes along with this event … I ask for grace and patience as I hear things, and I will extend grace and patience back to you” – Poullard. People are getting a bit riled up.

9:15 p.m UC Berkeley’s budget will be going online before the end of the month, so you can play chancellor and try to balance it yourself. Fire up your Excel spreadsheets.

9:30 p.m. “One of my unhappinesses with the Regents is that there is not a single academic … I’ve nominated several people myself … but I have not been successful”-Birgeneau

9:33 p.m. Breslauer used the word “exigency.” Fancy.

9:36 p.m. “My own view is that fees should not get any higher”-Birgeneau. Again, shocking.

9:42 p.m. One student: I don’t know how big the strike in November is going to be, but the one in March is going to be hella big. Be ready to be with us in the picket lines, to tell the Regents and to tell the president that we are not going to take it.”

9:45 p.m. Birgeneau does not plan to obtain emergency powers à la Yudof to try to redistribute the budget.

9:47 p.m. According to Birgeneau, there has not been a single executive pay raise on UC Berkeley campus.

9:48 p.m. Sounds like we’re wrapping up. Bye folks!

Image Source: ahisgett under Creative Commons



Comments:
Student said:
Nov 6, 2009 at 2:35 am

Idiot question of the day:
9:00 p.m. One student’s question: “Why does our football coach earn more than any other public employee?”

Because thousands of people pay to see what he does and even more watch on tv. Do your research before you ask this question for the 100th time.



student said:
Mar 27, 2010 at 4:32 pm

That is a great question. Thousand of people paying does not add up to enough to cover what Intercollegiate Athletics spends so the university puts millions into Athletics while fees are going up and everything is getting cut.