The Coastal Fund initiative is asking for the reaffirmation of two separate lock- in fees totaling to $6.33 per undergraduate student per quarter in the upcoming Spring Election.
The organization is completely governed by UCSB undergraduate and graduate students and supported entirely by two separate student fees — a $3.33 Associated Students referendum and a $3 Campus Elections Commission referendum. The group sponsors projects to protect and enhance local beaches and open space.
“The money benefits the campus in many ways,” Scott Bull, Coastal Fund’s grants manager and affairs adviser, said. “In just a couple years we’ve put in beach access stairways and we’re doing ongoing water quality monitoring. Most of the restoration you see around campus is done by Coastal Fund. We also pay student interns.”
According to Bull, Coastal Fund sponsors conservation societies like the Audubon Society and Surfrider Foundation as well as local weekly cleanups and restoration projects.
“These are a great fundraising oppor- tunity for student organizations,” Bull said. “We give them $150 to clean up the beach or $250 to participate in restoration events, and these happen every weekend.”
An official statement released by the Coastal Fund indicates the organization has “allocated $1,996,032 to 498 separate local programs and projects” since its formation in 1999.
A 60 percent plus one negative vote removes the fee but at least 20 percent of the student body must vote for a reaffir- mation to be considered valid. If at least 20 percent of students vote, two-thirds of the student body must support the initia- tive for it to pass. If the turnout is above 30.84 percent for undergraduates, the average turnout for the past 5 years, 50 percent plus one voter approval is needed.
The CEC fee is not charged for Summer Quarter although the A.S. fee is collected in the summer. Of the exist- ing A.S. fee, $2.50 goes directly to the Coastal Fund and the remaining $0.83 is for return-to-aid.
Elections begin April 18 and end on April 21. Ballots can be accessed via GOLD.