Wednesday, March 4, 2009

It's the little things...


With Umass Amherst churning out faculty pink slips like a gay pride print shop and deferring building maintenance while escalating student fees $1,500, today’s Springfield Republican carried a Legal Notice RFP for sandblasting McGuirk Stadium, estimated at $35,000.

So hmmm… they are going to hold off on routine maintenance for buildings used year-round, but gussy up a football stadium used only a few months per year for a very expensive athletic program? Yeah I know, it is also used for Commencement another one time annually.

Maybe the 91 professors who received lay-off notices should form a Workers’ Collective to place a bid. According to bid specification they have to get paid at least prevailing wage.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

Remember...this is UM-ASS! I know of many people who work there with head scratching stories...ever hear that for many years they run the power plant boilers just before the end of the fiscal year in late spring...just to suck up the "gas bought"...we're talking an enormous amount of gas...if you dig deep enough there are many many stories of immense waste of money there. Or as you pointed out...a huge amount of special interest projects that benefit few...while neglecting the majority of the student body!

Anonymous said...

What will happen when the students truly revolt? That should be fun...

Anonymous said...

Ryan Willey Said:
How about the abandoned steam plant on Tilson Road. The boilers are still inside rotting a way. I know it is spilled milk but it is a prime example of your tax dollars at work. Talking about waste in government is like discussing what beer to have on St. Patty's Day Guinness anyone?
-Ryan Willey

Anonymous said...

If anyone witnessed the recent public tirade of Coach Jim Calhoun of our state university neighbor to the south, you know that you have to be careful criticizing expenditures on university sports programs, especially the high profile ones.

"Do you know how much revenue the football program brings to UMass? Do you? Harrumph!" End of discussion.

And, in Calhoun's case, the room was full of sports writers whose livelihoods depend on Calhoun's success on the basketball court, so there was not a word of dissent uttered from them.

Rich Morse

Anonymous said...

yes that lovely steamplant whose turbines turned backwards and broke the first time they tested it. didn't realize condensed steam would run back downhill.

i hear it is a white elephant, just like the wtc....ripe with asbestos, and too expensive to clean up. maybe the ex-bushies can fly 2 planes into it like they did in nyc....then umass'll collect double on insurance due to 2 terrorist acts.

LarryK4 said...

Actually grumpy the Umass football program is a lot like Cherry Hill (actually more like South Hadley's The Ledges) golf course: A money pit.

You gotta put down the New York Times once and a while and read the Globe:

*

The Boston Globe
To UMass, gridiron success worth the price

By Bob Hohler, Globe Staff | December 8, 2006

AMHERST -- Two victories shy of a national championship, the University of Massachusetts football team enters its biggest game in years tonight having already cinched a singular distinction. No public college or university in the country has reported losing more money on a Division 1-AA football program in recent years than UMass, according to financial records the school files with the US Department of Education.

UMass officials said the annual shortfall of at least $2.6 million has been budgeted as the price of sustaining a competitive football program that promotes the school's image, provides a unifying, entertaining resource for students and alumni, and extends opportunities to student-athletes, among other perceived benefits. The UMass operating budget is covered by state funds and student fees.

Ed said...

It actually is worse - lots of student fees get shifted to athletics while the cost of providing the service gets shifted to other accounts.

For example, a student wishing to use the pool has to write a $40 check not to UMass but to the athletic department. Yet the costs - heat, water, electricity and building maintenance - come from other accounts.

And Rich, it is far worse than just the sportswriters not wanting to offend the coach -- none of the local media dare offend UMass (as a whole) lest they loose their access to the athletes. Which is why the MMan does not have a sports page, we refuse to play that game.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of UM financing and soft or trust fund money, how is the commission revenue for all the coin operated vending machines (including washers and dryers) allocated? Vendors pay a 6 figure sum annually to have their machines on campus.

Ed said...

I can answer the vending machine money question: it goes to the Vice Chancellor's Cultural Diversity fund. Persons wishing to promote cultural diversity get it -- and it once helped pay for a visit from Louis Farakkhan.

This was documented by those who were upset about Farakkhan coming to campus. At the time, the laundry machines charged $1.00 of which $.76 went to the fund, $.24 to the vendor -- the other vending machines had (and have) similar arrangements.

Paul Bogush said...

"With Umass Amherst churning out faculty pink slips like a gay pride print shop..."

Your opening line is right up there with "Call me Ishmael."

Anonymous said...

Hmmm, cultural diversity? Do believe if someone scratched under the surface, one just may find a few salaries (of course for administering the +$100K), office expenses, and maybe even a vehicle??? And when did they stop paying for athletic scholarships, from the vending monies? Just wondering, that's all.

Anonymous said...

They pay for the scholarships out of the parking tickets. Of which there are a lot...

It was Tom Robinson who started the VC/CD fund, that would have been in the '90s during the infamous David Scotch era.

As to the cost of "cultural diversity" one really could have some fun looking. We can start with the entire Office of ALANA Affairs, the EveryWyman Center, the Stonewall (gay) Center, the assorted race-specific cultural centers, the Housing Center for Diversity and Development, the DIMES (Diversity in Management Education) program, the SEPTIC (Social Thought and Political Economy) program, the Social Justice programs and and and and and....

One could look at the results of the "student strike" last spring and the handouts from that, including the professor hired, half of whose job is to be babysitter to the SGA's Student Bridges program.

UMAss makes Springfield look honest.

And yes, they are firing ALL the lecurers, the folks who actually teach classes. So what if the students can't get their classes....