Fee ironic, moronic
Law to increase fee to $2 not necessary
Published: Thursday, October 24, 2013
Updated: Thursday, October 24, 2013 15:10
Assembly Bill 1358, signed by Gov. Jerry Brown on Oct. 10, allows community college student governments up and down California to increase student representation fees from $1 to $2, and lower the voting threshold student governments need to increase the fee.
The law also requires that the extra money generated by the fee be donated to an outside organization, meant to represent student concerns at the state level. The organization chosen to receive the funds is the Student Senate for California Community Colleges (SSCCC), a group that opposes student fee increases, but sponsored the creation of AB 1358.
The bill lowers the voting threshold needed to enact the fee at any given community college campus by lowering the percentage of votes needed to pass it. It is apparent that the bill is little more than an attempt to sneak the fee past unsuspecting students.
Prior to the signing of AB 1358, student governments in California were allowed to hold elections to enact a $1 student representation fee, which can be used by the Associated Students Union of each college. The old law required that 66 percent of students participating in the election vote “yes” for the fee to be enacted.
AB 1358 makes several changes to the law. Under the new law, only a simple majority (one more vote than 50 percent) of students participating need to vote “yes” in order to enact the fee.
The law still requires that students vote in order to enact the fee. But by requiring fewer votes than before for the increase to be enacted, it is hard to see it as anything more than the SSCCC attempting to rip money from the hands of the students they claim to represent.
Contra Costa College ASU President Ysrael Condori said, “The SSCCC supporting AB 1358 contradicts their message of opposing fee increases.”
Condori said he believes the SSCCC’s support for the bill stems from its desire for a new office, or office building.
The SSCCC wants to represent community college students in the same fashion students at UCs and CSUs receive statewide representation.
The SSCCC claims to represent student interests to state officials. It is supposed to lobby politicians to pass bills that address the concerns of students. However, AB 1358 is little more than them representing their own interests.
Funding may be required to accomplish the SSCCC’s goal, but an attempt to sneak extra money out of the pockets of their constituents is a despicable means of obtaining it.
Without any control over who the members of the SSCCC are, no CCC student should donate a cent to the so-called “student representation” group.