Experts Weigh Pros, Cons of Employee Free Choice Act

Pegged by some business elites, such as Bernie Marcus, the co-founder of Home Depot, as the bill that will lead to “the demise of civilization,” and by some union advocates as the most significant advance in workers’ rights in over a decade, the Employee Free Choice Act has sparked a contentious debate on both sides since it was introduced in Congress just over a month ago.
Yesterday, the battle reached Cornell’s doorstep as Nancy Schiffer, associate general counsel to the AFL-CIO, and Arch Stokes, an attorney at the firm, Shea, Stokes, Roberts and Wagner, faced off to debate the bill’s merits in the final event of the School of Industrial and Labor Relation’s “Union Days.”

Interfraternity Council Tightens Party Regulations

As part of an ongoing effort to increase the safety of open fraternity parties, the Interfraternity Council passed two resolutions at the beginning of the semester that further regulate how fraternities operate their social events. As a result of this legislation, all fraternities can only hire security companies that are licensed and bonded by the State of New York. Furthermore, fraternities must clearly mark the party’s sober monitors.

Collegetown Restaurants Adjust as Sales Decline

Compared to typical, economically thriving times, Collegetown restaurants have seen fewer customers enter their establishments while their costs of operation continue to increase during the current recession. In order to continue earning a profit, Collegetown restaurants and bars have had to change many of the details of their operation.
Collegetown’s more formal restaurants seem to be most effected as students look to spend their money more efficiently. Once a popular weekday lunch spot for Ithaca’s locals, the Japanese restaurant Miyake’s weekday sales are reportedly down about 20 percent compared with this time last year as it has been forced to rely on increasingly frugal college students to sustain its business, according to its owner.

Judge Lowers Amount H.P. Owes Cornell

U.S. District Judge Randall Rader overturned a previous jury decision when he ordered Hewlett-Packard to pay Cornell $53.5 million in a lawsuit that the University filed against the company for infringing Cornell’s patent on a data processing unit in January 2002. Despite the $53.5 million Cornell is due to receive, the University planned on receiving $184 million from the lawsuit following a jury’s decision in June 2008.
The dispute was over an innovative data processing unit — developed by a Cornell researcher in the late 1980’s — that was capable of performing multiple functions at once, unlike its predecessors. The processor, which was issued a patent in 1989, enabled computers to function faster and more effectively.

Recession Prompts Economics Profs to Adjust Coursework

As the current economic crisis reaches historic lows, professors are working hard to find unique and creative ways to bring the crisis into classrooms and relate textbook principles to the real world.
Many economics professors have attempted to discuss certain principles, models and theorems in light of how those same tactics are being used by the U.S. government to combat the economic downturn.
“While the standard course content relates to the economic and financial situation, I’ve tried to explain it more in the context of what is going on right now.” explained Prof. David Lee, applied economics and management. “For example, I’ll talk about a bunch of Obama’s administrations initiatives in terms of the concepts that we are learning about.”