September 26, 2010

Letter to the Editor: Skorton Should Approve R. 12

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To the Editor:

Re: “Student Assembly Seeks Ability to Mass E-Mail Student Body,” News, Sept. 10

As requested in the proposed Student Assembly resolution, President Skorton should release salary information for administrators. While New York recognizes Cornell as a private university with no legal obligation to release this information, unlike most other private universities, Cornell also receives substantial funding from the state as a land grant institution.During the debate between the First Amendment and non-discrimination measures, Skorton said that independent student organizations should not have to follow new non-discrimination standards proposed by the S.A., but if such groups received funding from the S.A., Skorton did give the S.A. the option to enforce stricter standards.Following Skorton’s own advice, Cornell has no obligations for stricter pay disclosure requirements as a private university, but since Cornell receives generous funding from the state as a land grant institution, it has a moral obligation to taxpayers to follow stricter public university standards for pay disclosure (and also the First Amendment as well), regardless of the university’s legal obligations.

Mike Wacker ’10, former Sun columnist

Correction Appended: This letter was originally titled “Skorton Should Approve R. 6.” In fact, the resolution the letter makes reference to is Resolution 12, not Resolution 6. The Sun regrets this error.