Council Supports Researcher Who Faces Deportation

President Wafa Ben Hassine praised council last night for having moved though 11 new business items at such a fast pace — three hours may be longer than the average meeting, but council got much more done.

Council passed the recreation facility fee referendum, which would charge $22 per quarter to maintain facilities like Canyonview Pool. The referendum will go on the spring ballot as long as the Graduate Student Association passes it on March 7.

Council approved the appointment of Revelle College freshman Shounak Ghosh, Sixth College junior Polina Tsvetikova and Muir College freshman Kevin Hsaio as new judicial board members.

Council also approved a letter addressed to California Governor Jerry Brown in retaliation against the proposed $500 million cut to the UC system. There were a few amendments to the original letter, which included fixing punctuation errors and incorrect data.

Then council approved a resolution seeking justice for stem cell researcher Wilda Helen’s appeal process for her termination and possible deportation.

The University Centers fee referendum of $5 — which changed the Consumer Price Index from five to two percent — was approved.

Ben Hassine introduced a survey for the technology fee — which charges $4 per unit for each student in its first year of implementation — to go on the Spring Quarter ballot. After many arguments about the confusing and misleading wording of the question, council approved it with a few amendments.

The athletics committee presented information from a 2010 report about the feasibility of bringing football to our campus and the feasibility of becoming a Division I school.

To start football team, would cost between $20.8 and $33.8 million. Title IX states sports teams are required to have gender equality, so at least one other female sports team would be created alongside football.

The startup cost of becoming a Division I school is about $11.5 million. After that, an increase of at least $4.8 million in the athletics budget would be required.

The committee’s recommendation was to concentrate on becoming a Division I school. They said a football team would not be feasible.

AVP of Enterprise Operations Brian McEuen introduced Johnny Simkin, founder of SwoopThat — a website that serves as a go-between for online textbook vendors. Councilmembers liked the website, which shows users every textbook listed online and seller ratings.

The site has a deal with Amazon.com, where they receive an amount of every purchase. It then gives UCSD 50 percent of the cut and our student government can decide what to do with it.

Sixth College Senator Parminder Sandhu responded to Ben Hassine’s statement about quick meetings by posing the question of whether the meetings go quickly because councilmembers understand the issues they’re voting on, or because everyone’s in a rush to go home.

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