Chancellor's Corner: Continuing our efforts to end the 4/20 gathering

March 10, 2013

I want to take this opportunity to inform you that the CU-Boulder campus will once again be closed to non-affiliates on April 20. We are continuing this approach, begun last year, to ensure that the business of the campus continues without being materially disrupted, and that our teaching, research and academic work and other university operations can proceed.

We understand that there are some inconveniences associated with this approach. Faculty, staff and students will be asked to show their Buff OneCards to gain admittance to campus, and the Norlin Quad will be closed to everyone. All CU buildings that are open for normal business on Saturday will remain open, and all meetings, performances and activities will go on as scheduled

We will follow the protocol established in 2012 for non-affiliate access to campus. Visitors who have official business, meetings or other officially sanctioned activities on the CU-Boulder campus will need to obtain a visitors’ pass by visiting the following link and filling out the form: http://www.colorado.edu/april20/campusaccess. Application for access must be completed and submitted by 10 p.m. on Sunday, April 14.

Again, this year, we have worked closely with the student leadership in formulating our approach. We have, at the student leadership’s request, agreed to communicate more clearly with people about the purpose of the police presence. We have also agreed not to use any fish fertilizer on the Norlin Quad.

For a list of measures we will take on April 20, please see our news release at www.colorado.edu. The cost of these measures is paid for with funds from campus insurance rebates, not from tuition or funds used for CU’s academic mission.

I want you to know that we don’t take these actions lightly. These measures are being taken at my direction, to ensure that the CU-Boulder campus can fulfill its academic mission and to provide for the safety and security of the campus. The growth of the 4/20 gathering on the campus was not sustainable, as crowds in recent years grew to between 10,000-12,000, and the attendant noise, smoke, congestion, trash and obstruction of the gathering created an untenable situation in the heart of the campus.

The police presence will be engaged merely to prevent disruption of the University’s operations and to secure the campus for the entry of students, faculty, staff and others who have legitimate business on the campus. They will work with people with the utmost professionalism and consideration.

I know that some of you, including student government representatives, disagree with this approach and I have heard your voices clearly on this issue. It is a tribute to the student government leadership that it has continued constructive dialogue with my administration about ending 4/20 – a goal shared with us – despite its concerns.

This approach is being taken after careful consideration of all input, and recognizing that my primary duty as your Chancellor is to safeguard the ability of the institution to fulfill its mission of education, research and service. If you have concerns about the campus’ approach, please feel free to write to me at chancellor@colorado.edu.

Thank you for your cooperation and assistance, and for the good work that all of you do as CU faculty, staff and students. 

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