Voter Turnout: 3288 Undergrads (16.25%)
The LRC Initiative required 60%
External VP, Local Affairs
Student Advocate General
The Associated Students Legal Resource Center (LRC) provides legal education, advice and consultation to UCSB students on topics such as criminal citations or arrests, landlord-tenant disputes, marriage or divorce, consumer complaints, traffic tickets, personal injury, harassment, and debtor –creditor issues, among others.
The funding will go towards the LRC’s goals of operating a Self-Help Legal Center in Isla Vista, implementing a Sobering Center Program, and will contribute to daily office operations, facility rent, and staffing.
Day to day operation and staffing costs have increased since January 2007, when the last fee increase was enacted, but the budget has not. The demand for the service has also increased, partly in response to staff being more available to meet with students. For example, in the Summer of 2013, the LRC attorney consulted with 101 students while working only two days a week; whereas in the Summer of 2014, the LRC attorney and a newly added case manager worked 5 days a week, and consulted with 236 students. The services provided by the LRC have saved students thousands of dollars in attorney fees. The office is located in Isla Vista above the Pardall Center, and accrues operational costs for rent, phones, internet, legal research access, law library and programs.
The average number of Isla Vista arrests for drunk in public/public intoxication, many involving UCSB students, is 600 per year. An arrest involves removing a person off of the streets who is too intoxicated to safely care for one's self, spending a night in jail, having an arrest on one’s criminal record, and expensive court fines and participation in an alcohol educational program when the case goes to the court. Arrests also result in decreased availability of police officers on the IV streets due to jail transport and processing of arrestees. Currently, nearly 50% of IV public intoxication arrests are not prosecuted in courts by the Santa Barbara County District Attorney’s office because of limited resources. This results in less students benefiting from educational opportunities for alcohol consumption, and dilutes the desired “deterrent effect” arising from an arrest.
A Sobering Center Program would remedy many deficiencies of the current methods employed. It would prevent incarceration in jail for first time offenders by providing a non-jail facility for the individual to be taken to while they sober up. It would ensure that individuals receive education for alcohol consumption even though there is no court case filed. It would minimize the time patrol officers spend away from the streets and they can better protect and serve Isla Vista residents, and would eliminate an arrest on a student’s criminal history.
The money provided from this fee would be would be in direct control of students who are members of the student run Legal Resource Center (LRC). The LRC would solicit proposals annually from UCSB and community entities interested in providing operations, facility rental, and staffing of a sobering center to be used by UCSB students. There would be an administrative fee for the Sobering Center Program paid by individuals using it. After the first few years, the Sobering Center Program will be self-sustained by user fees.
The Self Help Legal Center is a community-access, free legal resource program that was implemented and launched with the Isla Vista Tenants’ Union in Summer 2014. It is available for use by UCSB students who do not require legal advice, but need resources to assist them with the judicial process, drafting correspondence to address a conflict, or preparing documents for agreements. The purpose is to provide individuals with tools to use themselves to accomplish their legal needs. The Self Help Legal Center occupies space within the Pardall Center that results in overhead costs for rent, maintaining the library and computers and work spaces.
The fee will be assessed beginning fall of 2015. The fee will decrease over the next four (4) years due to Legal Resource Center programs that will become self-sustaining, after which the per student/per quarter fee will be $4.75. Of the $6.50 collected for the LRC, $3.00 will be applied to the operation and maintenance costs of the LRC service; $0.50 will be applied to the operation and maintenance of the Self Help Legal Center; and $3.00 will be applied to the implementation, operation and maintenance of the Sobering Center Program.
Do you approve of a nine dollar and thirty-seven cent [$9.37] lock-in per student per fall, winter, spring and summer quarters, beginning Fall 2015 and decreasing to $6.84 in Fall 2019 for the necessities and programs of the Associated Students Legal Resource Center ($6.50 will go to the Legal Resource Center, $0.46 is for an administrative assessment collected on all non capital expenditures, $0.07 is for the AS recharge fee and $2.34 is for return to aid)?