San Francisco Chronicle, 12/29/11.
David Crane is not the most popular man in Sacramento. In fact, his determination to tell legislators what they don’t want to hear – yet need to hear – is about to cost him his position as a University of California regent.
Crane’s term is about to expire at the end of this week, and the state Senate did not even allow a hearing, let alone a vote, for his reappointment confirmation.
Crane, a registered Democrat, rankled his party brethren in the Legislature by spelling out in a Feb. 27 Open Forum piece how a 1977 law changed the balance of power in the state Capitol by extending collective bargaining rights to state employees who already had civil service protection. Crane did not call for a repeal of such rights – as some demagogic legislators have claimed in an attempt to demonize him – but he did argue that this imbalance of power was straining the state’s ability to pay for vital needs, including higher education.
He also has had the temerity to take legislators to task for all but privatizing UC by overspending on their political patrons, such as prison guards, whose union gives generously to campaigns.
Crane, whose spot-on warning of overly optimistic pension-fund returns got him bounced from the CalSTRS board a few years ago, is the type of advocate and truth teller who belongs on the Board of Regents.
Link to full article: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/12/28/EDMK1MHNF5.DTL