Friday, December 9, 2016

And I Was Thinking We Were Headed to Double Secret Financial Exigency

So on the BOT agenda for today's meeting was the dissolution of the Management Action Committee and the University Advisory Committee and the termination of the financial exigency. Now might be a good time examine what has been gained by the board declaring financial exigency in February. 

There doesn't seem to be one action that was taken by the university that required an exigency declaration. And about half of the work force is gone. Overpaid administrators continue to populate the university. Enrollment continues to decline. The narrative of the university's closing continues to spread unabated. The university foundation is unable to raise any money because of a dysfunctional relationship with the BOT. The much touted new president is gone, $600K richer for his efforts. The university was sanctioned by the Higher Learning Commission for failing to plan how to manage and terminate its financial exigency and now faces serious accreditation risks. The failed past president and his terminally incompetent cronies continue to interfere in the operation of the university, even going so far as to try to influence the composition of the next Board of Trustees. Students continue to be scammed by the shameless conduct of academic pretenders and plagiarizers. Faculty melt, drift or otherwise flee tenured positions. The physical infrastructure rapidly deteriorates and now there are two huge gashes/trenches/ravines scarring the face of the campus, making CSU even more uninviting to prospective students. The corporate memory of the institution has been decimated by the #CSUclowncar to the point that I wonder if the university even knows how to function as a university in its most basic of functions. Does anything still work at this university? With an HLC visit a mere 44 days away, what will the university look like when they get here? Are they possibly coming to begin the post-mortem for a university that had so much promise before being turned over to the terminally incompetent? 

And with the press paying a bit more attention, the interim president continues the failed behavior of his predecessors by defending the indefensible and not taking responsibility for the university's actions. Yes, all university's have or use lobbyists AND what has the university gotten from its politically connected lobbyists especially in the past year? And yes, all universities have legal fees, but CSU has spent an inordinate amount on avoidable litigation, (see Crowley v. Watson; Meeks v. Watson; Peebles v. Watson) and add up what the attorneys' costs from those cases are. Ironically, the cause of the lawsuits walks away with no penalties. Only the taxpayers, and thus the students pay for this incompetence.

And now the BOT is considering terminating the financial exigency. Wow! It was actually on the agenda for the last Board meeting and yet they found a way to not consider it. Maybe it was the critique they were receiving from unhappy students that it slipped from their memory. Now the phrase "too little, too late" comes to mind when considering the extensive damage wrought by those with the fiduciary responsibility for the university.

So in the spirit of the holiday season, let's give thanks for the gift that keeps on giving, the CSU Board of Trustees. Maybe the Governor will finally say enough and give the university a gift by replacing the entire board. This is probably the last chance for the university to be a university.

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