Student Fee Referendum


By: Julie Mana-ay and Glendy Ardon

CSU Bakersfield students are anticipated to vote on a new referendum that would expand the Student Union and a new aquatic center for the Student Recreational Center.

ASI President of Campus Life Mohammed Cook took the lead during the Low Down open forum event inside the Residency Hall of Student Housing East.

During the forum, Cook said if the referendum passes, the Student Union would not have the funds to break ground immediately though the new aquatic center added to the Student Recreational Center would commence instantly.

The reasoning behind this is because a reserve account was not set up for the Student Union’s initial construction in 1994.

“We just don’t have it because in 1994, [ASI] didn’t take us for consideration. They said ‘we built our building, wish you the best of luck future generations.’ So what we have to do right now is save up,” said Cook.

Students like Dayana Santillan, senior and psychology major, are looking forward for the new upgrade on campus.

“The increasing population of the school makes the school look more attractive, more community friendly, and more student friendly as well,” said Santillan.

Unlike another student, Michael Lynch, sophomore and English major, said that 27 million dollars is a bundle of money for our campus.

“I came to this meeting to get more informed about the issue facing us because not only do people propose and having an extra fee but also we are potentially seeing our tuition increase as well,” said Lynch.

When asked about imposing extra student fees rather than proposing a plan that would be covered by the money already allocated, Cook said money was the overall issue.

“That was already designed for the 1994 generation and our overall goal of the 2018 CSUB is that we’re trying to prepare for the future and for the future CSUB students,” said Cook.

To kick off voting day for the referendum, Cook said ASI will be hosting a grand finale.

“That’s or big hoorah. This will be our last Low Down,” he said.

ASI will be campaigning the referendum and tabling throughout the week.

ASI President Mariela Gomez said she wants students to be involved within the process of voting for the referendum.

“Our job as ASI is to make sure that we put information on the project and make sure students have that information necessary to make the best-informed decision because ultimately the students have a lot of power with this project and it’s up to them to decide the future of the university will look like,” she said.

Students will be able to vote on the expansion of the Student Union and a new aquatic center beginning on Feb. 21 and 22. The voting results will be announced on Feb. 22.