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February 18, 2009

Campus Budget Hearings Begin Next Week

Brooklyn College hosts the first of the PSC’s Budget Hearings. The union will bring lawmakers to campus to hear from students, staff and faculty about what the real-life implications are of the Governor’s proposed cuts to CUNY’s budget.  The Brooklyn College PSC chapter hosts its hearing at 4:30 on February 26 in the Woody Tanger Auditorium. Everyone is welcome. The rest of the hearings are at 4:00; please come and testify.  Contact your chapter chair to sign up.

March 5 – John Jay
March 12 – Staten Island and City Tech
March 19 – Baruch and Queens
March 26 – BMCC
April 2 – BCC
April 30 – Hostos
May 7 – LaGuardia

The union is proud to have DC37, USS, and NYPIRG co-sponsor the hearings. Be there, be heard! More information is on the PSC website.

PSC Led in Pressing for More Higher Ed Funding in the Stimulus Bill

Throughout last week, PSC leadership communicated with its members, members responded by  sending letters to their elected representatives, but decisions were made earlier than many expected—by Wednesday afternoon.  Thank you for your extraordinary response.  The PSC shared our letters to Congress and President Obama with higher education advocates around the country, and unions from California to Illinois to Florida joined us in sending it to Washington.  Thousands of letters were sent in all. We joined the AFT in calling for  restoration  of the funds for the states (some of which could be used for public higher education), and we continue to press for a fair share of the state funding that was agreed on in the final bill to go to public higher education. The PSC is developing a full analysis of the implications of the stimulus for the PSC and CUNY and will share it once it’s complete.

Budget Media and Policy Training Offered Again This Thursday

Two weeks ago, PSC members brushed up on the facts about the State and City budgets and perfected their skills of talking on radio and TV.  They emerged ready to take on any talk-show host about the budget.  If you missed the training last time, come this time! It’s this Thursday, 2/19, from 4 to 6 pm in the PSC office. All members are invited. Please RSVP to PSC Communications Coordinator Dania Rajendra by email.

More Budget Action: Rally on March 5 for Fair Share Tax Reform

The One New York coalition, of which the PSC is a member, is sponsoring a rally at City Hall on March 5 at 4 pm to make visible New Yorkers’ – and the NYC labor movement’s – support for fair share tax reform (that's the same as progressive revenue options) as the best and smartest way to deal with the city and state budget problems. The PSC supports the One New York proposal to close the budget gap by asking New Yorkers who make more than $250,000 a year to pay a bit more. Check this space next week for details on where to meet the PSC contingent.

Lobbying in Albany, March 2 & 3

More than 30 PSC members will travel to Albany again next month to meet with legislators about the importance of increasing funding for public higher education at a time of economic downturn—not decreasing it, as Governor Paterson has proposed.  The PSC contingent will join counterparts from the faculty and staff unions at SUNY for a day of concentrated higher education advocacy.  The proposal that New York State reform income taxes rather than cut services and “tax” students is gaining ground in Albany, but we have to continue to press hard. Join us for the Albany visits later in March or in May; email Amanda DeJesus Magalhaes to sign up.

Labor Goes to the Movies Shows Two Shorts This Friday

Labor Goes to the Movies shows Julie Dash’s Illusions and Agnès Varda’s Black Pantheron Friday, 2/20 at 6 pm. Email Nicole Rodriguez-Robbins for more information. No RSVPs, please.