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November 17, 1993 - Image 1

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1993-11-17

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New 'Piano'
tickles the ivories
at the Michigan



One hundred three years of editorial freedom

Sheldon, Democrats tangle over 'U'land-transfer memos

LAnn Arbor Democrats are casting Mayor
ngrid Sheldon as a lawbreaker in a six-month
saga involving the University, secret meet-
ings, leaked memos and a patch of oak trees.
Democrats Monday night fired the latest
salvo in the long-simmering dispute over the
Republican mayor's confidential memos to
city councilmembers in a property negotia-
tion with the University last summer. Speak-
ing in succession, a pair of city Democratic
leaders accused Sheldon of violating laws on
*pen government - in spirit if not in letter.
Monday's council meeting was the first
regular session since Sheldon announced her

intention to run for re-election in 1994. In an
interview Friday, Sheldon said the Demo-
crats' protests are motivated by politics rather
than a genuine concern for open government.
Sheldon did not respond directly to Ann
Arbor Democratic Party Chair Douglas Scott
and 4th Ward Democratic leader Greg Hebert
at Monday's council meeting. The mayor was
not available for comment at her home yester-
The quarrel over secret memos stems from
a proposed deal between the University and
the city to spare a grove of historic oaks from
a road realignment needed to expand the
University's Veterans Administration Medi-
cal Center.

The original proposal would have trans-
ferred six city streets to the University. The
plan was scrapped in favor of a compromise
- a parking lot in South Fuller Park for both
public and University use.
Councilmembers adamantly opposed the
street transfer, and the deal collapsed before it
was to be voted on by the City Council and the
University Board of Regents in early June.
Frictions between both sides were evident
during the negotiations.
Secret memos circulated between Univer-
sity and city officials were later leaked to the
press. The disclosure triggered a debate over
what governmental bodies can do out of the
public eye.

One of Sheldon's memos to
councilmembers urged them, "... let's not
share with press." Another said, "This is con-
fidential information and I hope you will
respect the process."
Under the Open Meetings Act, public bod-
ies may deliberate the sale or transfer of
property behind closed doors. Sheldon said
she thought the University-city negotiations
met those criteria.
Democrats see things differently.
Addressing the council Monday night,
Hebert told Sheldon, "Now, I know that you
believe that because this was a 'land deal,'
you were allowed to evade public scrutiny,
but the Open Meetings Act allows only for a

closed meeting when land is bought or leased.
It does not allow for decision making by
secret memo."
When questioned yesterday, Scott denied
his comments were intended as a partisan
blow. "It's a very binary issue: either the
information is protected under the Open Meet-
ings Act or it is not protected. This issue isn't
political, it's administrative."
Scott then challenged Sheldon to seek the
city attorney's opinion on whether the law
was violated.
Sheldon accused the Democrats of "play-
ing politics" and promoting a partisan agenda.
"I'm going to remember this a year down the
road," she promised.

House to
,vote on
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Seizing
e momentum on the eve of a House
showdown, President Clinton won a
rush of converts yesterday for the
North American Free Trade Agree-
ment. Opponents accused the White
House of doling out billions to line up
An Associated Press' survey
showed more than 200 House mem-
bers were supporting the pact or likely
to do so. Opponents' numbers were
lwindling, and stood at roughly 200.
"Tomorrow, the Congress has sim-
ply got to vote for hope over fear, for
the future over the past. They've got
to vote for confidence in the ability of
the American people to compete and
win," Clinton told the nation's gover-
nors, summoned to the White House
to provide evidence of widespread
support for the treaty.
0 Mickey Kantor, the administra-
tion's trade representative, worked
with Florida lawmakers over terms to
shield the state's tomato growers from
damage in the event Mexico violates
export standards.
Clinton met at the White House
with Rep. Floyd Flake (D-N.Y.) who
emerged to announce his support.
Flake said the president had pledged
o support new Small Business Ad-
ninistration pilot programs to pro-
vide funds for urban areas. "It's my
hope my district would be one of
those," said Flake.
Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio) said
the administration was serving up
"pork" in the "basement of the White
Said Rep. David Bonior, the House
Democratic whip, "I shudder to think
hat it will take to get votes to pass a
decent health care bill next year."
Clinton pledged to send thank-
you notes to any lawmaker who sup-
ports the agreement. He wrote GOP
House leader Bob Michel that it would
be inappropriate to campaign against
candidates in 1994 on the basis of
their support for the agreement.
The House vote is set for today,
end it will take a majority of 218 votes
o win approval. Passage there would
send the accord to the Senate, where
Democratic and Republican leaders
issued fresh predictions of passage.
"Let me make it clear and unmis-
takable: The Senate will pass the North

'U minority

Laureen Barrameda, first-year LSA student, checks a student's ID before he votes in the MSA election in the Fish
Bowl yesterday. Barrameda said her post was rather busy. Elections conclude today.
Irnout for MSA elections,
spor"adic after opening Iday,

The MUG bustled with students
standing in lines to order their dinners
last night, but the booths where they
could cast their ballots in student gov-
ernment elections were relatively
Engineering sophomore and
Michigan Student Assembly Rep.
Michael Bruno smiled and greeted
students with a hearty, "Have you
voted yet?" as they passed by.,
He said a number of students came
to vote in the one hour since he had
been staffing the booth, but admitted
the number was still small.
"Most of the people who are vot-
ing are doing it because they know
people who are running," Bruno said.
He added that he could not accu-
rately assess voter turnout thus far
because voting will continue today at
various sites around campus.
LSA junior Denice Asbell sat at a
table next to the booth and marked off
her choices for the new representa-
tives for MSA, and executive officers
and representatives for LSA Student
Government (LSA-SG).
Asbell, who is running for a LSA-
SG representative seat herself, said
voting and playing an active role in
campus politics should be important

MSA elections rinisn toay.
Here's where you can vote
and when the sites are open.

Location I
Nat Resource
Business Lge
CC Uttle
West Quad
East Quad
Grad Ubrary

Wednesday, Nov.17
8:50 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
6:35-9:15 p.m.
8:50 a.m.-9:15 p.m.
8:35 a.m.-5:45 p.m.
9:05 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
9:20 a.m.12:45 p.m.
9:35 a.m.-noon
11:05-2:20 p.m.
10:50 p.m.-3 p.m.
11:35 a.m.-2 p.m.
1:50 p.m.-9:15 p.m.
11:20 a.m.-1:15 p.m.
11:50 am.1:30 p.m.
4:35-6:30 p.m.
2:50 p.m.-6 p.m.
6:50-9:30 p.m.

have shown up to vote at the booths in
Markley and East Quad residence
halls. Within two hours, students vot-
ing at Markley filled an entire ballot
box, Payne said.
In fact, he added, East Quad poll-
sters requested an extension of voting
hours to accommodate the large voter
Payne cited the fact that many
Keg Party candidates live in East Quad
as a possible reason for the plethora of
But some students remain cynical
about the election despite the fliers
covering the walls of campus build-
ings. LSA sophomore Monica Flores
said most students are voting for their
acquaintances because there is no fo-
rum to hear the candidates' positions
on the issues.
MSA recruited students to work
booths by offering student organiza-
tions approximately $5-an-hour for
each group member who worked.
Payne said the election payment
can compensate for student groups
that did not receive as much funding
as they would have liked from MSA's
Budget Priorities Committee.
"I hope we get a lot more of what
we saw today. It's essential that stu-
dents exercise their right to vote,"
Payne said.

The number of students of color at
the University again reached an all-
time high, University President James
Duderstadt announced yesterday.
Fall enrollment figures show mi-
nority students make up 22.8 percent
of the student body, up from last year's
21.4 percent.
"I'm very proud of where we are
today," Duderstadt said.
The enrollment statistics are de-
tailed in the five-year progress report
of the Michigan Mandate,
Duderstadt's commitment to increase
diversity on campus.
"The Michigan Mandate is a step
that was taken five years ago when we.
recognized we simply were not doing
as much as we should in representing
students, faculty and staff of color,"
he said.
Fall enrollment figures show:
Black enrollment has reached
an all-time high for the third year in a
row, making up 8.1 percent of the
student body (7.8 percent last year);
* Asian American enrollment
makes up 9.4 percent of the student
body, up from last year's 8.8 percent;
* Latino/a enrollment grew to 4.5
percent, from last year's 4.1 percent;
Native American enrollment in-
creased to 0.7 percent, slightly higher
than last year; and,
minorities make up 23.5 per-
cent of undergraduates, 23.9 percent
of professional school students and
18.7 percent of graduate students.
Lester Monts, vice provost for
academic and multicultural affairs,
said, "The University of Michigan
has made tremendous progress in this
area. When we stack up the figures,
we see that the University of Michi-
gan stands out as a leader in higher
The Mandate also aims to increase
minority faculty members.
"Today we have the most repre-
sentative faculty and staff in the his-
tory of the University," Duderstadt
announced, presenting the numbers
of tenured or tenure-track faculty.
Faculty of color make up 12.3
percent of the total. Faculty by ethnic
group: African American, 92, or 4.5
percent; Hispanic/Latino, 28, or 1.4




1987 1992
Asian American J African American
Hispanic/Latino Native American


The Michigan Mandate
originated five years ago in an
attempt to increase diversity
on campus. Below are last
year's figures compared with
those of 1987, when the
Mandate took effect.

COLOR (1987-1992):
African Americans: 44%
Hispanic/Latinos: 126%
Native Americans: 90%
Asian Americans: 58%
percent; Asian American, 73, or 6.2
percent; and Native American, 3, or
0.2 percent.
Dean of Students Royster Harper
focused on programs implemented
through the Mandate that deal with
undergraduate students.
These include the Program on In-
ter-Group Relations and Conflict, the
Undergraduate Research. Opportuni-
ties Program and the living-and-learn-
ing 21st Century Program.
"When we talk about living and
learning in a multicultural society,
that has implications to all students,"
she said.
Duderstadt said many people sup-
port the Mandate, but noted, "That
doesn't mean everybody supports it
to the hilt."

to every student.
"(Student government) affects us
all, so we need to have our voices
heard," she said, adding that she has
encouraged her friends to take a few
minutes to fill out a ballot.
Other students have also run strong
campaigns to get their friends to vote,
said MSA Election Director Chris-
tian Payne, an LSA sophomore.
He said a large number of students

1 '

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