The Dowling Plan Rolls On

The Dowling plan for restructuring College governance made some major advances during the last two weeks but also encountered a few formidable roadblocks as it continued on its bureaucratic path toward implementation.

In a College-wide referendum. 71 per cent of students voting approved of the plan--which calls for scrapping or reorganizing several existing committees and creating a few new ones--and 29 per cent opposed it. About 35 per cent of the student body participated in the vote.

"I'm pleased a great majority of students feel that this thing is something that they think will be useful," John E. Dowling '57, chairman of the committee that drafted the proposal, said yesterday of the vote.

"Thirty-five per cent jives pretty much with the figures we compiled of students interested in student government," he added, referring to the turnout.

Dowling also had positive words for the decision of the Committee on Houses and Undergraduate Life last week to approve the proposal.


But with the endorsements came what several students working on the implementation of the plan viewed as a setback--the Faculty Council's decision last week not to submit the Dowling proposal to the Faculty for a binding vote at its meeting May 19.

Instead, the Faculty will discuss the plan and then take a straw vote. "It probably makes sense that the Faculty not vote on any legislation until the constitution is finalized and the students vote," Dowling said.

But Andrew B. Herrmann '82, chairman of the Student Assembly and one of the students working on a constitution for the new student government, said the delay would also put off a vote by the Corporation to approve a $10 hike in term bills to fund the new government.

As it now stands, students will vote on a constitution in another College-wide referendum next fall. The Faculty will also hold a binding vote at that time, and if both groups approve of the finalized plan, it will go to the Corporation.

If all goes according to schedule, the new student government could be operating by next February, Dowling said. But although "it's all moving ahead," Dowling said, "We all would have preferred to see it done by this fall so as to have something bright and shiny in front of us."