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Police arrest 13 during UC tuition hike protest

By Beat News Service November 17, 2010 2 Comments Print Share

San Francisco and University of California Police guard the UCSF campus after a morning of protests outside a Board of Regents meeting. (CALIFORNIA BEAT PHOTO)

SAN FRANCISCO — Police arrested 13 protesters during a raucous demonstration outside a University of California Board of Regents meeting at UCSF this morning, including one man who allegedly stole a officer’s baton and assaulted him with it.

The protesters were part of a larger group of student demonstrators rallying against a proposed 8 percent tuition increase for undergraduate students at all UC campuses. They surrounded a UCSF Mission Bay campus building where the UC Regents were meeting to discuss the proposed fee hike.

Police said the protest turned unruly when a University of California police officer was cornered in a UCSF parking garage and had his baton stolen by protesters.

Footage captured by KTVU-TV showed the officer drawing his gun and aiming it at the group of students after a protester took his baton.

The officer did not appear to be injured, but UCSF Police Chief Pamela Roskowski said three other officers suffered minor injuries during the morning protests. None of the injured officers required hospitalization.

According to police, the arrested protesters included students from UC Berkeley, UC Davis and UC Merced. Officers also used pepper spray against a group of protesters who tried to enter the meeting hall.

The university says it needs to raise tuition to address a continuing budget shortfall due to the state’s failure to fully fund higher education. The regents will vote on whether to approve the 8 percent hike during Thursday’s meeting.

Contact the Beat at news@californiabeat.org.

2 Comments »

  • Milan Moravec said:

    UC Berkeley is going to have to make difficult painful decisions on spending and requests for funding for 2011. When UC Berkeley announced its elimination of baseball, men’s and women’s gymnastics, and women’s lacrosse teams and its defunding of the national-champion men’s rugby team, the chancellor sighed, “Sorry, but this was necessary!”
    But was it? Yes, the university is in dire financial straits. Yet $3 million was somehow found to pay the Bain consulting firm to uncover waste and inefficiencies in UC Berkeley, despite the fact that a prominent East Coast university was doing the same thing without consultants.
    Essentially, the process requires collecting and analyzing information from faculty and staff. Apparently, senior administrators at UC Berkeley believe that the faculty and staff of their world-class university lack the cognitive ability, integrity, and motivation to identify millions in savings. If consultants are necessary, the reason is clear: the chancellor, provost, and president have lost credibility with the people who provided the information to the consultants. Chancellor Robert J Birgeneau has reigned for eight years, during which time the inefficiencies proliferated. Even as Bain’s recommendations are implemented (“They told me to do it”, Birgeneau), credibility and trust problems remain.
    Bain is interviewing faculty, staff, senior management and the academic senate leaders for $150 million in inefficiencies, most of which could have been found internally. One easy-to-identify problem, for example, was wasteful procurement practices such as failing to secure bulk discounts on printers. But Birgeneau apparently has no concept of savings: even in procuring a consulting firm, he failed to receive proposals from other firms.

    Students, staff, faculty, and California legislators are the victims of his incompetence. Now that sports teams are feeling the pinch, perhaps the California Alumni Association, benefactors and donators, and the UC Board of Regents will demand to know why Birgeneau is raking in $500,000 a year despite the abdication of his responsibilities.

    The author, who has 35 years’ consulting experience, has taught at University of California Berkeley, where he was able to observe the culture and the way the senior management operates.

  • David Colleen said:

    I’m glad that the police were there. I was pushed around by three protesters this morning. The protesters seem to think that they can deprive me of my rights by exercising their free speech. This is selfish and wrong of them.