CARSON — In what he termed an indirect solution to a controversy over control of the campus newspaper, the president of California State University, Dominguez Hills, has announced plans to terminate student funding of the publication, thus nullifying claims of student government leaders that they are the rightful publishers.
Richard Butwell said the university will increase its financial support for the publication, Bull's Eye, to offset about $12,000 that Associated Students, the student government organization, has contributed to the paper's annual budget of $25,000.
"Since the Bull's Eye will no longer be dependent on (student) funding," he said, "we see no reason for (student officials) to have any control over the paper."
Butwell, who has said that journalism is the "second love" of his career, also announced a "major effort" to improve the Bull's Eye's appearance and coverage of campus events--features of the paper that have been criticized by student officials and consultants--along with measures to strengthen classroom journalism instruction.
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Those steps, he said, will include hiring a full-time faculty member to act as the newspaper's adviser, adding a visiting professor of journalism with "a national reputation" to the teaching staff and finding a new chairman of the Communications Department.
He said the new chairman, who will replace David Safer, will be given "a specific mandate to make the newspaper one of the best" in the California State University system. Safer will return to classroom teaching in the Communications Department, which operates the Bull's Eye as a laboratory experience for advanced journalism students.
The new Bull's Eye adviser will replace Candy Nall, a part-time instructor. Nall resigned March 12, along with editor-in-chief Nancy Harby, after a months-long struggle with student officials for control of the paper.
Butwell said editorial management of the paper will be shared by the Communications Department, student editors and a media advisory board. He said arguments over a revised publications code--adopted by the student Senate in the attempt to take over the paper, but later suspended by Butwell--have become moot.
The paper will operate under the old regulations, he said, until the new policies take effect next fall.
Jerry O'Connell, student chairman of the Publications Commission that oversees the Bull's Eye, said he doubts that student leaders will challenge Butwell's moves. But he said Associated Students may use funds once allocated to the Bull's Eye to put out its own publication.