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Monday, September 1, 2014

UCLA History: Parking Lot

UCLA Parking in 1961 before more elaborate above- and below-ground parking structures became the norm.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Higher and Higher With the Grand Hotel


Of course, as the Grand Hotel gets higher, so does the cost.  But who's counting when it's only money?
video

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Semi-Hidden Art

An earlier blog post featured an artwork you were unlikely to see at Anderson unless you had a key to the faculty lounge there.  The piece above is not so hidden but it is on the fifth floor of the "B" building of the Anderson complex where there is not much through foot traffic.  (The fifth floors of the buildings that have a fifth floor don't connect with one another.)  This particular piece is entitled "Gladiator" by Gloria Schwartz.

Don't Count this $50 Million Chicken Until It Hatches

Blog readers will recall that the current state budget included $50 million each for UC and CSU, contingent on local property taxes reaching a specified level.  The trigger level wasn't reached but there was then a move in the legislature to give UC and CSU the money anyway.  Now such a bill has passed and been sent to the governor who opposes it.

Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins (D-Sacramento), a primary proponent of the new funding, said she'd work to overcome Brown's objections. “I’ll do whatever lobbying I have to do to get it done," she said.

Full story at http://www.latimes.com/local/political/la-me-pc-california-university-funding-20140829-story.html

Atkins may get egg on her face but you never know what might hatch:

Friday, August 29, 2014

Bonanza?

Is yours truly the only one who would like an advance pledge from the powers-that-be at UC that one end product of all of this* won't be another bonanza for some online training company to produce yet another mandatory training video?  By the way, the last "climate" survey was rumored to cost something like $1 million.  There are proposals out there for annual surveys despite the major methodological deficiencies in the million-dollar prototype.

*What is this? This is:
http://www.mercurynews.com/education/ci_26427010/campus-sexual-assault-yes-means-yes-bill-clears

Final End of a Tale (Tail?) of an Overreaching DA

Example of a 1950s D.A. haircut. Google it to find out what D.A. stood for back then.
Over a considerable period now, we have on-and-off followed the case, filed by the LA County D.A., against a professor at UCLA who was peripherally involved in a minor, short-time hire of his wife that was ok'd by the legal types at the university.  The Daily Bruin today carries a report which seems to be the final demise of that absurd case.  It appeared at the time that the D.A. hoped to get some leverage in another case against a UCLA professor that stemmed from a lab fire. That didn't happen.

A state appeals court ruled Wednesday that a UCLA political science professor cannot be criminally prosecuted for an alleged conflict of interest after he was involved in the hiring of his wife as a program assistant at the university...

Hundreds of students and alumni joined a Facebook group soon after in support of (the professor).
The case was dismissed in 2013 after a judge ruled that a state government code (the professor) allegedly violated, section 1090, does not apply to UC employees. The district attorney’s office later appealed the ruling, leading to Wednesday’s decision.

Full story at http://dailybruin.com/2014/08/28/court-rules-ucla-professor-cant-be-prosecuted-for-conflict-of-interest/

Thursday, August 28, 2014

In faculty recruitment, consider the cost of living and, for someone from Kansas, the high cost of leaving

There are lots of caveats in comparing the cost of living in various places.  However, the map above - which compares the value of $100 across all states with its value in each state is a good reminder when you consider faculty salary comparisons that are typically in nominal dollars.  The map tells you that if you move from California to Kansas, the same salary would buy you about one fourth more (111.23/88.57 = 1.26). [Click on the map to enlarge.]

Obviously, there are variations within California with more rural areas having lower costs.  You can find an interactive map for metropolitan statistical areas at http://taxfoundation.org/blog/real-value-100-metropolitan-areas. None the less, the bulk of UC faculty live in areas with higher-than-average costs of living, a fact that can lead to understatement of salary lags.