Passage of Proposition 30

Nov. 7, 2012

Dear Colleagues,

As you know from news reports and Chancellor Thor’s message, California voters have, thankfully, approved Proposition 30. This means that Foothill-De Anza now avoids a midyear budget cut, and that we will not need to enact the worst-case budget scenarios developed by the Planning and Budget Teams and reluctantly accepted by College Council.

This is terrific news. I want to express my deep appreciation to all the student, faculty and staff volunteers who worked tirelessly over the past two months to ensure that our students and local voters had information on the state propositions, were registered to vote and cast their ballots. The future of democracy depends on young people learning the skills of democratic work, and our students are among the most talented I have ever seen. We owe them great thanks for their work on this election and the outcome they helped to achieve.

In the college's mock voting project on Opening Day, 98.5% of us voted for Proposition 30. Also, 90% percent of us voted in this exercise to reelect President Obama, so it is likely there is much celebration on campus today. Comparisons of the votes cast by De Anza on Sept. 21, and Santa Clara County and the state that have been counted as of 9 a.m., can be viewed here.

It is true that good news can be a matter of degree. While it is a great relief to all of us that the passage of Proposition 30 essentially halves the cuts we must make, it does not affect the district’s ongoing $5.7 million structural deficit, and reductions – including the elimination of positions – must still be made districtwide.

We will provide information soon regarding next steps in our ongoing budget work. This will include one or more interactive town hall meetings, similar to the one we held in June and about which we received very positive feedback. In that setting, we can have a genuine dialogue about the dislocations and disruptions we will face. We will need to continue to take care of each other and our students.

Congratulations to Joan Barram, Betsy Bechtel and Laura Casas Frier on their reelection to the Foothill-De Anza Board of Trustees. And once again, I want to express my appreciation for all that our students, faculty and staff did to organize voters in this critical election year. I will be in touch again soon.

Brian Murphy

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