UC regents meeting rescheduled for Nov. 28
After being postponed because of what officials said were threats of violence and vandalism, this month’s University of California regents meeting will be held Nov. 28 from multiple locations linked by teleconference, the university announced Friday.
The locations will include UC San Francisco’s Mission Bay campus, the site for this week’s canceled meeting. The others will be UCLA, UC Davis and UC Merced. The bimonthly meeting will be just one day, instead of the originally scheduled two. But regents will expand the time allowed for public comment from the usual 20 minutes to an hour.
UC spokeswoman Dianne Klein said that, given the postponement, having multiple locations would save on travel costs for regents and staffers and would be more convenient for everyone involved, including the public.
The regents are scheduled to discuss their request for increased state funding as a way to avoid another tuition increase next year. But given recent reports about mounting state deficits, such requests are not likely to be granted. There will be no specific proposals offered on tuition levels at the Nov. 28 meeting; that issue will be discussed at meetings early next year, officials said.
The regents’ decision not to meet Wednesday and Thursday of this week came as the San Francisco area was roiled by several large protest marches by students and others from the Occupy Wall Street movement. UC officials said police had received a tip that violence was expected at a rally at the regents’ meeting this week but details of such a threat were not publicly released. Student leaders denounced the postponement as a violation of the free speech rights of the overwhelmingly peaceful protesters.
On Friday, Klein said the regents were not trying to avoid protests by meeting from four locations. “We welcome public comment, which is why we’ve more than doubled the time allotted, even in this compacted meeting. The regents share the students’ concerns about the unprecedented cutbacks to the university and hope that Sacramento listens,” she said.
Details of the meeting locations and the agenda are online at: Universityofcalifornia.edu/regents/regmeet/nov28.html
-- Larry Gordon