Tuesday, October 13, 2009

CSUS rally draws a small - but enthusiastic crowd

SACRAMENTO, Calif., USA - A crowd of approximately 150 students, faculty and staff came into the Library Quad Monday afternoon at CSU, Sacramento for a hastily called rally over budget cuts to the CSU and a bill that would tax oil companies - with the tax proceeds going to higher education.

The rally was sponsored by the California Faculty Association and Associated Students, Inc. to also talk about AB 656, a measure by state Assemblyman Alberto Torrico (D-Newark) that would tax oil companies on the oil that extract out of the state's oilfields.

And the lion's share of that funding would go to the CSU.

ASI president with Alberto Torrico
Alberto Torrico (right) with ASI President Roberto Torres

A firebrand speech by ASI President Torres led off the event. Torres exhorted students to get involved and support the bill.

Later, Assemblyman Torrico told the rally that oil companies have been posting incredible profits year after year and that California is the only state in the union that doesn't have a tax on oil as it is pulled from the ground.

"The governor is going around the state selling off state property but giving away the oil," Torrico said. "Even Sarah Palin has a tax in Alaska."

Professor Joe Palermo talks to crowd
CSU, Sacramento Professor Joseph Palermo

Also speaking was CSU, Sacramento Professor Joe Palermo who told the students that they are not being served well by the trustees of the CSU - or by the university system's chancellor, Charles Reed.

Reed and the trustees have said they are not supporting AB 656. But Palermo pointed out they haven't suggested how to solve the university's budget woes.

"AB 656 is the only game in town," he said. "What is Reed doing for his salary?"
  • San Francisco Chronicle story on AB 656

  • Audience at Sacramento State rally
    Audience at Monday's rally

    CSUS officials confer with person handing out information
    CSUS officials confer with student handing out literature

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