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October 14, 1981 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1981-10-14

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Page 4

Wednesday, October 14, 1981

The Michigan Daily

Edited aann Ui
Edited and managed by students at The University of Michigan


By Robert Lence

Vol. XCII, No. 30

420 Maynard St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Editorials represent a majority opinion of the Daily's Editorial Board

End RA grade requirement

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HE NINE resident advisers and
'T'resident directors who do not have
greater than a 2.5 grade point average
were given a reprieve by the Univer-
city Housing Office Monday and now
have until the end of the term to bring
their grades up. While it is pleasing to
see that the RAs and RDs will not loose
their jobs yet as a result of low
grades-a factor that really should
have little to do with an advisor's
ability to counsel-it is unfortunate
that, in the future, grades most likely
will continue to play an important role
in the RA and RD selection process.
The RA and RD problem springs
1 om a change in this year's selection
jtolicy. In the past, applicants needed a
, grade point average when they ap-
ied; under the new policy, they
eded that average when they began
'ork in the fall. Housing officials
Vfeieved this would allow people an op-
jortunity to bring their grade point
qverages up. Unfortunately, some
people's averages dropped, making it
necessary, under the rule, to fire them.
' Housing officials have shown
visdom in notimmediately firing the
J(As and RDs because of the ill-advised
f Be~kize's unc
ELIZE, A TINY Central American
nation only about the size of
Maryland, last month celebrated its
long-awaited independence from Great
Ifjtain. After decades,'London finally
rIlinquished its rule over the small
country, turning it from colony to
nation, and leaving it to guide its own
political future and to build its own
But, the future of Belize-facing
repeated military aggression from its
powerful neighbor, Guatemala, and
struggling to overcome its economic
over-dependency on colonial
businesses-is uncertain. Belize's
moderate, democratic government,
which enjoys the strong support of its
people, could very well succeed in in-
dependence given enough assistance
during the difficult transition from
Britain, the United States, and other
affluent nations.
Temporarily at least, Britain has
already pledged military assistance to
protect Belize from a possible
Guatemalan invasion and Belize's
government has attempted to attract
foreign investments to bolster it s
But, if Belize is to truly establish it-
self as a self-supporting nation,
wealthy foreign nations must give the
country enough economic assistance in
the transition to allow it time to build
is own domestic economy.
: Sadly, guided by President Reagan's

rule. It certainly could be detrimental
to dormitory residents to have their
resident counselors fired at the time of
the year when they are just getting
Housing officials have made it clear
that putting the RAs on probation is
only a one-shot deal. They have said
the 2.5 grade point average
requirement is not at issue here-only
the way it was implemented for this
term. It should be clear to the officials,
however, that the requirement is
needless. Nine individuals were selec-
ted for RA and RD positions last spring
because of their inter-personal com-
munication abilities. Their abilities
have not changed because their grade
points have dropped-there is no
reason for their jobs to be terminated.
The Housing Staff Selection Commit-
tee will review the new policy this
year. The members of the committee
should amend the policy, eliminating
the grade point average requirement
entirely. Selection committees should
be able to focus more on those qualities
that have bearing on a candidate's
ability to perform on the job.
ertain future
philosophy of pulling oneself up by
one's own bootstraps, industrialized
western European nations are
following America's example and are
scaling down aid to developing coun-
tries. This trend will not merely make
it harder for Belize and countries like it
to build economic and social indepen-
dence and stability, it may make it im-
Deprived of enough assistance to
maintain adequate economic growth
and to improve the general welfare of
their people, governments of
developing nations may begin to top-
ple. In the case of Belize, inadequate
foreign assistance could mean a
Guatemalan invasion. For other
emerging nations in Africa and Asia,
the discontent spawned by the gover-
nments' inability without aid to make
significant gains toward affluence
could mean internal strife and possibly
revolution. In short, the Reagan ad-
ministration's dramatic cutbacks in
foreign aid realized by the United
States and other affluent nations may
well serve only to destabilize Third
World nations whose stability and
growth are key to American interests.
And, for emerging countries like
Belize, the opportunities and
challenges of the future may seem
overshadowed by a growing
hopelessness and seeming inability to
overcome the obstacles of poverty on
their own.


-- ,A, _ _

The EPA begins to crumble

By June Taylor
WASHINGTON, D.C.-In the wake of the
resignation of two top Republican officials
from the Environmental Protection Agency,
and the leaking of a proposed agency budget
that could reduce staffing and, funding by
almost half, serious questions are being
raised in Congress about the ability of the
agency to function at all.
The problem is also of growing concern to
industry, which depends on EPA for a variety
of legal functions.
THERE ARE signs of organizational
deterioration at EPA which should not be
permitted to develop further," wrote Sen.
Jennings Randall (D-W.Va.) in a letter to Sen.
Robert Stafford (R-Vt.) head of the Senate
Environment and Public Works Committee.-
That committee has scheduled oversight
hearings tomorrow to look into charges of
EPA mismanagement.
Randall acknowledged that the new ad-
ministration had the right to select people
sympathetic to its viewpoint to run executive
agencies, but added: "We are concerned,
however, when conditions within an agency
prevent it from functioning in a professional,
effective way."~
Ontthe House side, Rep. Toby Moffett (D-
Conn.) has scheduled later hearings of his
Government Operations Subcommittee to ad-
dress EPA's lack of progress on hazardous
waste disposal regulations.
CONFUSION, distrust of existing
professional staff, lack of flow of information
and decisions, and declining morale have
marked the transition to the new team at
EPA. Part of this has been due to the personal
style of EPA's new administrator, former
Colorado legislator Anne Gorsuch. That style
is to retain tight control at the top, working
with a group of trusted aides.
Some of the agency's apparent problems
also are due to the slowness of the White
House in nominating key people for EPA
posts. Now nine months into his first year,
President Reagan has yet to nominate three
of the six assistant administrators at EPA.
Only two have been confirmed by the
Since nominees cannot begin to exercise
policy and management authority until con-
firmed, this delay has left the agency in an
administrative limbo that promises to persist
for many months.
ministrations generally are noted for better
management ability-perhaps because they
can draw on experienced executives from
large corporations as well as party members
who have served in past administrations. But
the new EPA has not taken advantage of any
of these traditional Republican strengths. The
new political appointees are noteworthy for
being young and largely inexperienced in
either environmental issues or running large
organizations. They also are being selected
by the White House, not Gorsuch herself.
Some of the current problems of com-
munication and mistrust at EPA were
presaged in Gorsuch's decision to sit out the
period of her confirmation process at the In-
terior Department with her Colorado ally
James Watt-rather than at EPA as is
usually done. The normal process provides
some overlap of the deparetment and
arriving teams which can smooth a tran-
sition, bringing the newcomers up to date on
pressing issues and allowing them to get to
know key professional staff.

REAGAN ADMINISTRATION changes in the Environmental Protection Agency may allow
industries, like this Detroit manufacturer, to excessively pollute the environment.

Gorsuch's confirmation dragged on for
more than three months, throwing the agency
into a management limbo. At the same time,
the administration's freeze on new
regulations stopped momentum on major
emerging rules. Many of these are important
public health and industrial problems, not
blue-sky environmentalist concerns.
FOR EXAMPLE, the agency must come up
with rules on safe disposal of chemical waste
and licensing of disposal sites. Until it does
so, federal law prohibits new waste disposal
sites or expansion of old ones. This is an
urgent problem for the chemical industry,
especially in the Northeast where existing
storage and disposal sites are almost at
capacity. This issue is the focus of House
hearings set for Oct. 21.
Gorsuch did not arrive at EPA until mid-
May, but within a month she had selected her
personal staff and annonced a major
reorganization of the agency. The com-
bination of transition and reorganization has
been blamed by some observers for the
present state of inertia at the agency.
A management consultant familiar with the
EPA noted: "What they are doing is almost a
textbook case in how not to run a transition."
abolished one division and with it one
assistant administrator post requiring a
presidential appointment and Senate ap-
proval. She created two important new
"associate administrator" positions which
would not require presidential appointments
or Senate confirmation.
Many people felt that in establishing the
two associate administrator positions, Gor-
such was doing an end run around the
political appointment process and would fill
the posts with longtime trusted associates.
However, either by choice or under instruc-
tions from the administration, she filled the
posts from the White House personnel list.
Nolan Clarke, a Washington lawyer, was
named to a policy and resource management
job, and Frank Shepherd, a Miami attorney
who had worked on President Reagan's 1976,

and 1980 campaigns, was named to a top legal
job. Both men resigned in late September,
sparking added concern about management
of the agency.
I CLARKE, AT 40, was one of the old appoin-
tees at EPA. He had an impressive
background in regulatory issues, although no
experience with EPA-related rules. In an in-
terview a few weeks after he came to EPA, -
Clarke said he believed there was a "clear
need for EPA and environmental regulation,"
but he was concerned about the cost effec-
tiveness of certain rules and programs.
Economics analysis and regulatory reform
were to be under Clarke's purview. Repor-
tedly one of the major discrepancies between
Clark and Gorsuch was that he wanted to
study proposed regulations for their economic
effects, but what he was being asked to do was
supply economic justification for decisions
that already had been made by Gorsuch and
her immediate staff.
In his letter of resignation, Clarke sited
"irreconcilable differences of style" as his
motivation for leaving.
a few days, citing the more standard "per-
sonal reasons." Shepherd, 35, had no en-
vironmental background or experience in
large organizations and was described as
being "out of his league" at EPA. Reportedly,
he also was frustrated by lack of access to
Gorsuch and the attitude of her select staff.
Those sentiments and frustrations are
shared by many, and many of EPA's career
professional staff are leaving for consulting
firms and industry and business positions.
While a cutback in staff levels is desired by
the administration, in many cases it is losing
the wrong people-those most familiar with
programs and procedures. This could hurt the
agency later on, for example, in efficiently
getting out industrial permits, a concern in an
administration that courts corporate ap-
Taylor wrote this article for Pacific
News Service.

e ;
t ! .

Forum a front for U. S. warm akers

To the Daily:
Will Hathaway's letter (Daily,
Oct. 9), "Forum for Everyone",
takes the Spartacus Youth
League to task for building a
"lively picket line, " at the "What
is National Security?" forum,
which he characterized as a
"misdirected, counterproductive

ning that the forum would be a
cynical public relations hype for
the architects of mass murder.,jt
was also a spearhead for in-
creased military "research" and
recruitment, coinciding with the
Defense Intelligence Agency's at-
tempt to establish itself on cam-
pus. TodayReagan is pushing an

an even cheaper way to kill. He
had a hand in the planning of the
Phoenix assassination program
in Vietnam. So in a less expensive
and less provocative ?manner
these warmakers would like to
accomplish the same goals as
Reagan. They only disagree with
Reagan on how to carry on his

down his kind offer to participate.
This is ridiculous! What he
doesn't say is that he was so
"confident," he threatened to
strangle our L.SA funding if we
didn't see things his way and his
letter is an attempt to give him-
self the basis to do it.
What Will is really angry about,


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