August 6, 2020
Dear Friends and Colleagues of AAUP Oregon,
As the Oregon Legislature comes together next week for a special session aiming to rebalance the state budget, AAUP Oregon calls on legislators to maintain state funding for higher education (full statement here). We further recognize the need for direct federal investment in higher education all while urging our university leaders to seek innovative institution-level solutions to budgetary woes.
Our statement was developed by a task force named at our Annual Conference on May 30. The statement was subsequently approved by elected members of the AAUP Oregon Executive Committee and by the elected leaders of all signatory organizations.
In short, our statement calls on Oregon and national leaders to:
- Direct resources to higher education, including direct investment from the federal government
- Spend from the Rainy Day Fund and Education Stability Fund to support necessary public services, including higher education
- Redirect the Kicker to necessary public services, including higher education
- Disconnect from the CARES Act loophole that benefits high earners and corporations
- Revise the tax code to improve tax fairness
We further call on our universities to:
- Engage faculty, staff, graduate employees, and students in all budgetary decisions
- Tap five-year earnings from endowment funds to support crucial student services or instructional budgets
- Prioritize funding for mission-centered activities and stop fiscal hemorrhaging from costly athletics programs
- Institute a baseline percentage of gift money regularly destined to the general fund, currently at 0% on most campuses.
Be sure to keep a close watch on the special legislative session being held Monday, August 10-Wednesday, August 12. Schedules for committee and floor sessions have not yet been set, but will be available here shortly. You can also follow that link to find a livestream of every committee meeting and floor session. Look for an update from us summarizing the special session late next week.
Yours in solidarity and appreciation,
President, AAUP Oregon
Statement Endorsed by:
- American Association of University Professors Oregon
- Graduate Employees Union of Portland State University
- Oregon Tech American Association of University Professors
- Portland State University American Association of University Professors
- United Academics of Oregon State University
- United Academics of University of Oregon