Fee Increase Will Help Students

Vincent Gragnani, Editor in Chief
Bill Burger, Managing Editor
Jeffrey White, Copy Editor
Tom Vu, Opinion Editor
Lauren I. Coartney, News Editor
Robert Fulton, Sports Editor
David Pilz, Photo Editor

Last May, Vice Chancellor Joseph Watson formed a committee to discuss a proposed $75-per-quarter increase in student fees. Most of the money from the increase would go toward expanding the University Centers and funding athletic programs. The increase would fund other campus improvements as well as student organizations.

Accomodating the anticipated 40-percent increase in students at UCSD will take a lot of careful planning, and we feel it is best to plan ahead for the upcoming surge in enrollment numbers.

We also feel that it was a wise move on Watson’s part to include students in the process of drafting the fee referendum. We will be voting for the fee increase and we will be paying the proposed $225 per year.

The lack of organization in forming the committee, however, has led some students to be wary of it, and rightfully so. At the second commitee meeting, many students brought up issues such as the fact that Tom Tucker, an associate vice chancellor, was one of the co-chairs of the committee. Fortunately, Watson removed Tucker as co-chair.

Additionally, students were concerned that many administrators served on the committee as advisers, yet students were not represented on the panel. However, the solution arose when Arash Kolahi, a UCSD student, was appointed as an adviser. Kolahi had previously prepared a book for students outlining past fee referendums at UCSD and other universities. His presence on the committee will add a new perspective to the issues being discussed.

The Guardian feels that if student fees are going to increase by such a large amount, students should be involved in the process. We applaud the students that attended last Monday’s meeting, and we hope they continue to make their presence felt.

Administrators also need to realize that if they want students to pay more for services, they need to involve students in a system that is fair. We feel that after last Monday’s meeting, Watson’s committee is now on its way to accomplishing its goal.