The college editorial staff opposes measure E

In just over a week, Fresno County voters will determine the fate of E-measurementa proposed 0.2% countywide sales tax that would bring the state of Fresno $36 million a year for the next 20 years.

The Collegian editorial board voted whether to approve Measure E. Of the seven committee members, two abstained because they were out-of-county voters. The other five voted against measure E.

Editor Ashley Flowers was appointed by the Editorial Board to write the following opposition to Measure E. In recognition of the opposing views of other Fresno State students, two reporters from The Collegian also shared their endorsements of Measure E.

In opposition to measure E

While Measure E intends to move Fresno State “from good to great,” the intentions and motivations behind the proposed tax increase are too obscure to garner my support.

I was born and raised in Fresno and am only a month away from being a two-time Fresno State alumnus. I freely admit that while I am a proud Bulldog, there are many places on campus that desperately need updating and affected majors that need relief.

But it’s clear that the Fresno State Improvement Area committee that backs the measure isn’t being transparent enough about its intentions.

It starts with Richard Spencer, the owner of Harris Construction, leading the committee and funding the campaign.

October 27, fresnoland Danielle Bergstrom shared the latest contribution report from the Yes on Measure E campaign on Twitterwhich revealed Spencer donated an additional half a million dollars last week, bringing his total donations to nearly $1.5 million.

If Measure E passes, Spencer — whose company has worked with and profited from Fresno State before — stands to gain far more than any tax-paying resident.

In 2016, Mackenzie Mays article for The Fresno Bee shows Spencer has already had similar success with the plan — his $30,000 donation to the committee behind Measure Q, a $280 million bond that Fresno Unified passed in 2010, earned him nearly $115. million dollars in sale-leaseback contracts paid by Mesure Q funds.

It also landed Spencer in hot water.

“Fresno Unified’s use of sale-leaseback agreements with Harris Construction landed it in court, with questions raised as to whether it led to a pay-per-play system,” Mays wrote.

This is not the kind of controversy I want the school I love and attend involved in.

Another area of ​​measuring E that makes me uncomfortable is that a third of the $36 million — $12 million a year — would go to athletics rather than academics.

There’s no doubt that Fresno State football is important to the Valley and the Red Wave passion calls for a bigger and better stadium. Taxing the entirety of Fresno County voters — many of whom will never attend a Fresno State class or even a football game — is not a reasonable way to accomplish this. Especially not when Fresno County 2021 census data revealed that 17.1% of people living in the county were in poverty.

Fresno State needs help, but the burden of that help shouldn’t fall on the shoulders of everyone who lives in Fresno County, especially not when raising taxes is part of a plan. rich man to become richer.

In support of measure E

From Aidan Garaygordobil:

As a student actively involved in Fresno State since 2019, I believe Measure E is a much needed addition to Fresno State revenue.

I think that despite the school being a great institution that has given me more opportunities than I could have ever imagined, there are glaring issues within the campus that mostly revolve around funding.

I have had experience in almost every facet of student involvement and extracurricular activities. We have no shortage of students with creative ideas and the ambition and work ethic to improve the student experience.

However, Fresno State funding for building repairs and upgrades to certain areas of campus is entirely lacking. I don’t feel like our current administration is doing everything possible to ignore the problems. On the contrary, I have the impression that he most likely wants to renovate the campus but does not have the capacity.

A revenue boost to address these issues is the most viable option in my opinion. Considering the pure investment Fresno State is putting into the citizens and community of Fresno, I believe this tiny tax will not only give back to the school, but act as a new investment in itself.

Additionally, one of the most important reasons for enacting the measure is for the good of Fresno State Athletics. While not every citizen of Fresno can share the experience of attending college, the majority of the city can attest to being portrayed as Bulldogs fans.

As a community that wants to see its athletic programs succeed at the highest level, and we are engaging in conversations with other West Coast schools such as USC and UCLA. We should take the initiative to invest in Fresno State.

From Al Scott:

While Valley Children’s Stadium is a fun and exciting place to watch a game, it’s not without glaring weaknesses.

Golf carts driven by volunteers driving through crowds of drunken football fans are a recipe for disaster. The walkways in and around the stadium are rocky and dangerous. People in wheelchairs or walkers need at least 20 minutes to get from their seat to and from the lobby.

This must change.

As the midterm elections approach, several voting proposals are on the table, including measure E.

If Measure E is passed, proponents say the tax could take the university from “good to excellent”. While the majority of funds raised will go to colleges, Fresno State will have up to $12 million per year available to fund athletics. But where would that money go?

The venue, formerly known as Bulldog Stadium, would definitely be a starting point. Originally opened in the 1980 season, Valley Children’s Stadium has since served as the home ground for Fresno State football.

There are certainly other areas on campus and in the athletics department that could use the money, but Fresno State should consider spending a hefty amount of money to renovate Valley Children’s Stadium if the measure is adopted.

They could start by adding an extra lane for golf carts on the ramps around the lobby to make it safe. As it stands, there are two yellow lines that people ignore, and it’s hard to blame them when you can’t see the ground well late at night.

Another improvement would be to redo the roads and walkways around the stadium. Asphalt is not safe and should be number 1 on a list of things to fix. People in wheelchairs or walkers would particularly benefit.

Elevator access from the concourse level to the ADA section of the stadium should also be a priority. It shouldn’t take someone an entire quarter of a football to go to the bathroom or take concessions.

As with any large installation, updates are essential to ensure the best possible quality. The Valley Children’s Stadium is no exception and has seen a few renovations over the years.

In 1991, the university added 10,000 seats – increasing the stadium’s capacity from 30,000 to over 40,000 – as well as 22 sky suites. The stadium also added additional restrooms and concession facilities.

In the years since, Fresno State has poured hundreds of millions of dollars into the stadium, and it would be wise to continue to do so considering the cost of building a brand new facility.

For example, the state of San Diego just spent $310 million to build Snapdragon Stadium, which opened this fall. That’s a lot of money, and upgrading the stadium now will extend the life of the venue for decades to come.

If Measure E passes, Valley Children’s Stadium could also get that boost.

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