Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Students storm UCLA building to protest expected UC system fee increase [Updated]

About 30 students stormed UCLA’s Campbell Hall and barricaded the doors with chains and bike locks early this morning to protest a student fee increase that is expected to be endorsed by the University of California’s Board of Regents today.

Me-UCfees19 [Updated at 8:39 a.m.: The UC Regents have started to meet, and hundreds of students have surrounded the building, protesting the proposed fee hike.]

Students who spent the night were sprawled outside Campbell Hall in sleeping bags. They carried posters and signs that read, “Don’t take our education away” and “Don’t privatize, democratize.” Many wore bandannas over their faces.

Dozens of other students spent the night camped out in tents on top of Parking Structure 4. Hundreds of other students are expected to join the protesters and demonstrate at the UC Regents meeting that will take place later today.

The proposed two-step student fee increase would raise UC undergraduate education costs more than $2,500, or 32%.The annual cost of a UC education, not including campus-based fees would rise to $10,302.

Kyle Tramberly, a junior at UC San Diego, said he did not sleep since arriving at UCLA late Wednesday night.

“I’m here in solidarity with people across the state of California that are being subjugated to these outrageous fee increases,” he said. “I can’t afford the fee increases, personally. I have to take out private loans in order to cover this. It’s completely unjust to put the burden on students.”

A key committee of the UC Regents backed the two-step hike Wednesday, despite appeals from students who urged the board to at least postpone a vote. About 500 student and labor-union activists demonstrated outside the meeting. Fourteen were arrested.

-- My-Thuan Tran

Photo: Students march in front of Covel Commons at UCLA, where regents will be voting on a fee increase later in the day. Credit: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times

Masked250 Audio: Statement from demonstrators

More photos  >>

Comments () | Archives (281)

It's Covel Commons, NOT Cambell Hall. Just FYI!

I think only undocumented felons should be allowed in our systems of higher education.

Waaah! Get some student loans, crybabies! Or get a summer job!

More power to the students! Not that UC is open to negotiation. As for the content of their education, the students are helpless lambs led to slaughter, sacrificed to the prevailing benightedness about curricula.

education benefits the public not only individuals. tax the rich who benefit from the safety, labor and progress developed from universities.

keeping fees low allows for social mobility and opportunity for poor students.

the UC is not for the rich. the UC is for California!

/how did the latimes get so many conservative trolls so quickly?

education benefits the public not only individuals. tax the rich who benefit from the safety, labor and progress developed from universities.

keeping fees low allows for social mobility and opportunity for poor students.

the UC is not for the rich. the UC is for California!

/how did the latimes get so many conservative trolls so quickly?

Yes, the real problem is traceable to Proposition 13. It was not tax relief for the elderly as falsely portrayed by Howard Jarvis, it's chief proponent in 1978. It was an underhanded effort to bludgeon local and state government by cutting its most important revenue source to meet the fundamental needs of the people. The benefits to our society of wide access to a good education paid huge dividends in the form of a better educated electorate, less crime, and other social ills. The de-education of the youth of California is now almost complete. The social ills of higher crime, poor health, and poor electoral choices at the ballot box is nearly complete.

Proposition 13 granted huge tax cuts to every corporation that owns land and now those corporations pay some of the lowest real estate taxes in the nation because corporate owned lands do not change hands like single family houses or even duplexes and apartments. Proposition 13, at least as to corporations, is corporate welfare. A typical middle class family that has owned its house since the 1980s pays less than $3,000 in real estate taxes that constitute the lifeblood of this state -- including funding for K-12 and higher education. In other states historically known as less "progressive" than California, that same family would pay $4,000 to $5,000 in annual property taxes.

For decades, California state and local government units have tried to make up for the massive losses by raising other taxes (sales and personal income that are much more dependent on the state of the economy than real estate tax) and shifting costs to users. User fees. Such as raising enrollment fees at institutions of high public education. We are now reaching a breaking point. The "users" are in rebellion. They need to turn to their parents and and grand parents and ask why Proposition 13 is so "good" for the state.

I'm all for kids fighting to get a good education, and I know very well that if I were in school right now, and was told I had to come up with another $2500 for next year, I'd have to drop out.

I worked in a factory to pay my way, and it wasn't easy.

But the Malcolm X sign? Really? Equating a fee increase to the civil rights movement? Bit much.

Oh, and Jkeyes - I don't know about you, but the whole idea of educating our children, is so that they can replace us in the workforce, keep our country competitive, and through their tax dollars, pay for our retirement. Do you really want to fight for 1 doctor with 100,000 wal mart employees? Because that's what you'll get if you remove Obama's "Public Education" option.

Yeah, that's right. There was no public education before that marxist Obama came in and forced us to have it - isn't that right Jkeyes?

JKey, we pay something called "taxes". And those "Taxes" ensure that basic necessities such as health care, education, transportation are provided. Remember, a population of smart people is much better for all than a population of laymen like yourself.

Oh goodie, terrorists at UCLA - As the parent of a UC student, I say arrest and expel these wannabe radicals from the UC system. Open the spots to the thousands of kids with 4.0s who didn't get into UCLA. This isn't Iran, where students set policy. This is NOT how to protest.

On what planet is this situation linked to Obama and the federal government? Jeez, I am so sick of everything being about Obama. This situation is 100% related to our fiscally irresponsible state government. California state spending has increased 80% over the last 10 years and for what? The only thing I get from the state is a bigger tax bill. And will the Prop 13 whiners just shutup - you're idiots! Enough property has changed hands in this state over the last 10 - 15 years so that metric buttloads of homeowners (like me) are paying enormous property taxes when our homes were re-assessed after the sale.

If anything, we should be moving in the opposite direction. During the Industrial Revolution a century ago, when it became clear that workers required more than an elementary education, states responded by creating a public secondary education system. Now that we're told, over and over again, that a college education is one's only hope for a reasonable standard of living, we need to extend public another four years beyond high school. It's ridiculous to say that a college-educated workforce is this nation's only hope and then refuse to invest in it.

It seems that many have long forgotten that there exists a pact between the citizens of CA and the institution of higher education. It's called "The Master Plan For Higher Education In California," created in 1960.

It guarantees a higher education in the state system for any citizen of CA that can benefit from it. This is not some kind of 'Obama' plan or unfunded idea put forth by the current legislature--it was meant to guide the actions of subsequent policymakers to ensure that a high quality and affordable education would be available to all.

If there's a problem, it's because the current crop of policymakers have chosen to blow off the state's commitment to higher education. This is not the fault of the students or the taxpayers or the professors.

viewer, as you pointed out, we are in a recession. Everyone is not eligible for financial aid, so they can't "exhaust" that, as you so elegantly put it. Further, being that we are in a recession and most of the people living here can't get jobs, how in the heck do you expect students to obtain a summer job? Perhaps they've already "exhausted" that option. These students are going to be forced to pay for less. More than likely the classes that they need are not going to be available, despite them having to pay such a huge increase. These students are not being selfish. They want -- and deserve -- a good education.

But these students have the wrong message. It is government interventionism that cause tuition prices to go sky high. They need to be telling the government get out of student loans so that costs can be balanced again.

It's about time someone stood up for something! The generations of the past stood up and stated how they felt. No matter if the increases happen or not. At some point we have to take responsibility for what is being done to us by larger powers. I applaud the students for not just complaining, but taking action! Bravo!

It is the voters fault.

Tom writes that "this is what happens when you vote in corrupt spending leaders like Obama, Pelosi and Reid." But I hate to point out that it is his Republican Governor and the inept state legislators on both sides of the aisle are the ones to blame. Blaming the Obama administration is just the usual blather...

I do agree though with his observation that it will only get worse until you vote these spenders out. But it is the tax and spend crew in Sacramento that needs to go along with a healthy changes to the state proposition system and the lingering negative impact of Prop13.

To all the UC students, higher education is a privilege not a right. Invest in your future, get financial aid, take out student loans, graduate, get a job, make some money and pay off your debt. Welcome to the real world…..

College is expensive. The state can't afford to subsidize you anymore. UC tuition is very very very cheap even after the increase. So please, just be grateful. Seriously. You guys have it very good compared to many other students.

Wimps!! Tell them to go out and get a job like the rest of us did.
No Free Rides

It's about time for the University of California regents to begin deciding which departments are essential, and which departments are no longer worth the expense. It shouldn't be too difficult to make those choices. The school of medicine is essential.

Clearly, there is no adult supervision at UCLA.

These little punks really need to get a job.

Wow, from "Hell no, we won't go" to "Hell no, we won't pay" in 40 years. The Theory of Devolution

I'm an old guy, but when I went to UCLA way back when it was basically free. My parents had nothing and the only reason I could get an education and improve my life was because our decision-makers made that a priority.
That was before Reagan conned people into thinking that if we just cut taxes on the rich, all that saved money would trickle down to the rest of us and we'll all be better off. That, it's obvious now, was a lie.
These students are being asked to subsidize tax cuts for the rich and that's wrong. More power to them for their courageous protest. I hope they succeed.

We've been at war for the last 8 years & no one is saying publicly in a loud and united front that conflict has hurt everything in the US, inlcuding education? What have we gained as a nation in the last 8 years? Holly Star get an education! How do you expect people to get a job when jobs aren't being produced and education is becoming more expensive? We use to make everything (manufacture) in the US and why have those jobs gone abroad? There is misconduct in both govt and in the private sector, hence the economic meltdown. Where is the rage at the financial institution bail out? Tom, it is everybody's fault for being less civic oriented and more ignorant oriented yet entertainment show savvy; turn on CSPAN or your local govt TV channel and turn off American Idol. Do not make disparaging remarks about hard-working students while you simulatenously tolerate corporate welfare. Guess what CommonSenseLA, no matter where you go in the US you will have to pay taxes, apparently. You want police and fire to be there for you when you really need them and you want a teacher (whether private or public) to teach your children on how to be a productive citizen--pay your taxes, contribute to your community and elsewhere, and communicate with your elected officials and keep them in office or fund a challenger. Let's make it happen.

« | 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 ... 11 12 | »


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...


About L.A. Now
L.A. Now is the Los Angeles Times’ breaking news section for Southern California. It is produced by more than 80 reporters and editors in The Times’ Metro section, reporting from the paper’s downtown Los Angeles headquarters as well as bureaus in Costa Mesa, Long Beach, San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, Riverside, Ventura and West Los Angeles.
Have a story tip for L.A. Now?
Please send to newstips@latimes.com
Can I call someone with news?
Yes. The city desk number is (213) 237-7847.


Get Alerts on Your Mobile Phone

Sign me up for the following lists: