Prop 30 brings more money to community colleges

by Gabriela Hernandez

Renovations to ELAC have been going on for years, with Proposition 30 it can push ELAC South Gate Educational Center to extend . Proposition 30 or better known as the Sales and Income Tax Initiative will help to fund various community colleges in Los Angeles. With this new funding the renovation or extension of the South Gate Educational Center can begin. The Proposition itself is not for beautification of campuses but to add classes to community colleges. The number of times that the sounds of electrical drills and construction heard around the main campus is astounding. The renovations at the Monterey Park ELAC campus have been of such great of a number that they even have “Weekly Construction Updates” on the school website.

Whether the embellishment of the Monterey Park campus plays a key role in the education of a student is uncertain. For those that simply cannot take classes at the main campus they are left with the South Gate Education Center where if there’s no parking you have to walk down two blocks to the additional parking structures. Where you can find new rolling chairs and desks at the E3 building, you’re left with desks and chairs that are attached together at the South Gate campus.

The funds don’t only trump the overall beautification and comfort for the students of ELAC but for the professors as well. ELAC’s main campus has desks/podiums which can be lowered or elevated to accommodate the professor, while at the South Gate campus you have a regular desk with a podium. The most high tech equipment being the projector. The Monterey Park campus has undergone a number of renovations over the years. Although there is always talk about moving or extending the South Gate campus none of it has been concrete.

Until this new election brought about a proposition for community colleges. Proposition 30 was passed just this month which would offer additional much needed money to community colleges. Proposition 30 increases the state sales tax from 7.25 to 7.5 and increases taxes of annual incomes of $250,000 or more. Although it might seem as if many people would be for Proposition 30 there were many opponents to the proposition. One of the main opponent donors being Charles Munger Jr. son of billionaire Charles Munger. No surprise that a billionaire’s son would be opposed to being even more heavily taxed. The last time that Proposition 30 passed in 2012 ELAC’s then President Farley Herzek wrote “..you will see a tremendous amount of construction on campus during the next several years..” and he was right.

It’s 2016 and the construction still continues. This time around possibly South Gate will possibly begin to see movement in their campus to begin construction.  Since the proposition only adds classes, South Gate’s campus has challenges with that since they barely have any space to add additional classes to the schedule.

Interim Dean Evelyn Escatiola was asked what changes she would like to see in the South Gate Education Center to this she said  “..personally a facelift, a fresh coat of paint, clean campus..have more publicity to let people know we’re a campus..brighten the place up, more visible to the public.”.Interim Dean Evelyn Escatolia says Proposition 30 “Is great but when we get a place like South Gate we can’t use it, were left with a desire.”, this desire is to be able to add more classes that students could possibly attend there at the South Gate Education Center without having to travel long distances.  

South Gate Education Center would benefit from Proposition 30 but with little to no space for  additional classes it might be necessary to continue focusing on  extending the campus. Interim Dean Evelyn Escatolia says that the additional funding can be used to prepare the facilities when the South Gate campus moves across the street to the two additional buildings on Firestone. Although the restrooms are getting a fresh coat of paint at the South Gate Education Center, it’s necessary that the campus continues s to push for an extension in order to benefit from Prop 30.  Additional classes which could benefit students here in South Gate  ELAC’s main campus in Monterey Park. As a final statement Interim Dean Evelyn Escatolia said that the reason we don’t extend is “Not because we don’t want to, because we’re stuck.”

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