University of Hawaii Seeks $1.5M to Beef Up Security

Published: August 29, 2007

HONOLULU – University of Hawaii-Manoa (UH) officials are requesting more than $1.5 million to strengthen campus security after two break-ins and an assault at campus housing this month.

One break-in involved an assault against an 18-year-old freshman dorm resident. The university responded by stepping up security measures at the residence halls, including more frequent patrols and nonstop running of front desks at the freshman towers.

The supplemental budget request was made to the UH Board of Regents. It includes about $1 million for 18 more security guards and equipment, including bicycles and radios. The additional guards and bikes will allow for more campus patrols, including the residence halls, which house about 3,000 students. Currently, the university has about 33 security guards, and four of those are on bike patrol.

The university is also requesting about $500,000 to improve lighting in parking lots and $75,000 for a new student patrol program.

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Officials are also considering three potential security changes: hiring more security guards, working with the Honolulu Police or State Sheriff’s office to place a substation on campus or creating a campus police force.

The Associated Students of UH (ASUH), a group that represents undergraduate students, is concerned about previous Manoa security funds used to secure Bachman Hall two years ago during protests against the U.S. Navy University Affiliated Research Center. According to ASUH vice president Laura Saiki, there was money for security years ago, but it never made it to the students. ASUH will continue investigating the request.

The regents are scheduled to make a decision on the request at their September meeting.

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