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ASUA doing all it can to boost child care

Arizona Daily Wildcat,
March 24, 2000
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When all is said and said, ASUA really has only two roles - lobbying group for the UA students and shepherd for club funding.

The group has some pretty deep pockets and close proximity to the administration, but the teeth just really aren't there. Yesterday, however, Associated Students Senators and President Cisco Aguilar pooled the organization's resources in a symbolic move toward helping a needy cause.

The Senate passed two resolutions, one demanding $25,000 from the administration for child care subsidies and another donating $2,500 of its own money to the program. Aguilar also donated $2,500 from his own presidential account.

Playing upon Likins' already-soft spot for UA's measly child care account, ASUA has made the best move it can to accomplish something worthwhile. Unfortunately, without a way to lash back hard if Likins doesn't follow the "demand," this really is the best they can do.

What is upsetting about these resolutions is that ASUA has to even do this to get additional funding. It's about as sad as watching a child gather up his allowance to help the family pay for bread.

The optimum budget to supply subsidies for University of Arizona students with day care is guessed at $150,000 - the number ASUA originally asked UA President Peter Likins for last year. But Likins added to the original $12,000, making the subsidy $50,000.

Based on this financial scale, the only way real progress can be made is to get it from the big guns - Likins and Co. $5,000 isn't going to take care of many families.

But judging from last year's increase - brought about by a flock of angry student-parents and ASUA nudging - Likins knows this is an important issue and has made at least some commitment to helping it.

Aguilar and the Senate made a good move by passing these resolutions by sending a message to Likins that a one-shot increase is not going to cut it. ASUA is telling Likins that it hasn't forgotten about this problem and is willing to cough up its own hard-earned money to get the ball rolling.

Aguilar sees that he managed to crack the proverbial piggy bank once and wants to go after the final blow before his term ends.

ASUA has never stuck by an issue as strong as this one. Positions have changed, and officers and senators have remained dedicated. Likins should show the same commitment they have.

Hopefully, Likins will listen to the call, but if he can't get the money or says he can't get the money, it's going to take a lot more money than ASUA has to make an impact.

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