The Palomar College Governing Board made the right decision on Prop M, opting for proposal B.
The final decision on Prop M was put into question towards the end of the Governing Board meeting in late September.
The meeting was to select Prop M projects which will form the basis of the Chancellor’s Office required annual five-year construction plan. The Governing Board members ultimately decided on proposal B for Prop M.
Three main projects will be funded towards the Athletics and Kinesiology Departments and Student Services, including a 40,000 square foot building on the new Fallbrook campus.
Any extra money left over will go towards funding smaller projects, such as updated signs for buildings.
Joe Early, Palomar College’s head football coach, said the gym needs to be built “for our community.” He said that it needs “to be built for racial justice and equity for student athletes.”
Along with Early, the speakers included college faculty and a Palomar College student stating their case on which proposal they should choose.
Most college faculty leaned towards updating the college sports facilities due to the wear on the buildings, and how important the sports and kinesiology departments are to Palomar students.
Lacey Craft, who is the kinesiology faculty representative, made some points about significant issues with the current facilities at Palomar College.
Facilities such as the football and track field, softball field and pool are in poor condition compared to other premises on campus. Mold, mushrooms and mice that have been found in the facilities “pose a liability threat to the district along with the the health and safety of their students, staff and community,” said Craft.
First, the recent renovations made on campus, such as the new library and parking structure, have been completed. The $150 million left in the budget can be used to improve the damaged athletic buildings.
Second, the mold, mushroom and mice shown in the board meeting have been experienced by students such as myself. The athletic facilities, such as the bathrooms near the pool, have dim lighting, opened lockers and etched mirrors. The place looks like a post-apocalyptic horror film.
Third, living in Valley Center, the Fallbrook campus is closer to where I live compared to the San Marcos campus. Constructing a new building there would be a much needed improvement. I have only visited the Fallbrook site once for a counselor meeting, and was sadly underwhelmed by the campus’ presence.
When I imagine a college campus, major buildings such as a library, classrooms and cafeteria come to mind. When visiting the Fallbrook site, I saw portable classrooms and not one major building. The campus closely resembled an elementary school.
The location is great for students who live closer to Riverside County, but the campus does not offer students courses that we desire to complete our degrees.
This is why the Governing Board has made the right decision, which included everyone’s interest and well-being. The funding for all these facilities would be the first step to improving the campus environment.