City College president seeks student support for Measure S

City+College+president+seeks+student+support+for+Measure+S

MAC WALBY, Channels Staff

City College Superintendent-President Dr. Lori Gaskin paid a visit to the Associated Student Government meeting Friday morning to ask for support for bond Measure S.

Measure S is a $288 million bond that would fund renovation and modernization projects for the City College campus that gives the aging campus new life. The bond will be used to renovate old buildings, bring them up to code and modernize the campus.

The money would come from local homeowners and would cost an average of around $67 per year for each homeowner. It will come from the assessed value of the property, at a rate of about $17 per $100,000 of property value.

With recent budget cuts and financial woes in California, the state has left it up to the Community Colleges to ask their communities to finance these types of renovation projects. With the passing of Proposition 39, community colleges and K-12 schools are able to ask their communities to finance them. They only need a 55 percent majority to pass a bond measure like Measure S.

Governor Jerry Brown’s administration recently came out against a proposed $9 billion bond for school renovation projects. In a statement to the press, a spokesman for the Finance Department H.D. Palmer said the bond “creates new General Fund debt service costs at a time when the administration is focused on paying down existing debt.”

Gaskin stressed the importance of revitalizing an aging campus to the senators.

“Our place is pretty old,” said Gaskin. “And we range anywhere from 40 to 80-years-old.”

In 2008, a similar but considerably smaller measure was passed. Measure V gave the school $77 million to use for renovations. With this $77 million, the school modernized the Drama and Music facility and Humanities building, along with funding the new West Campus classroom and office building.

Measure S will have a few major focuses, the top of that list being a complete makeover of the Campus Center and Student Services Center. During the construction, the campus will provide “swing space” to be used in lieu of the centers.

Another major plan in Measure S will be all new classroom buildings to replace the portables.

While discussing a possible endorsement, the senators all agreed that the campus badly needs renovations. “I think the big thing for us to realize is that its an investment in the future,” said Student Advocate Andrew Stavrenos. “And I feel all this stuff is just going to benefit students.”

The Student Senate will decide on an official endorsement at next week’s meeting.

 

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