Security costs for ‘fake news’ panel at Cal Poly estimated at more than $46k

Posted at 8:54 AM, May 04, 2018

Cal Poly says an estimated $46,600 was spent on costs related to safety and security during last week’s ‘Fake News’ forum on campus.

The April 26 event was hosted by the Cal Poly College Republican Club and the Cal Poly chapter of Turning Point USA and featured commentator Milo Yiannopoulos, among others. 

Security included temporary fencing around Mott Athletic Center, where the forum was held, increased law enforcement, firefighters and paramedics on standby, set up, the expansion of university police’s nighttime safety escort and other campus safety programs.   

In all, Cal Poly says 129 officers were on campus, including 17 from Cal Poly University Police, 54 from other campuses within the CSU (as part of the CSU’s Critical Response Unit), and 58 from various other law enforcement agencies around the county. Sixty officers were on standby throughout the night.

"I am grateful to our University Police Department for its thorough planning and to all the officers and other campus employees who worked to ensure our campus stayed safe and calm," said university President Jeffrey D. Armstrong in a press release. "I am also grateful to our campus community members who expressed their opinions about this event peacefully or who chose to partake in other campus events and offerings."

The event remained relatively calm, according to Cal Poly, which reports there were no arrests or reports of fights or damage directly before, during or after the event.

Cal Poly says while it handled food and lodging for CSU officers who came to help with the event, the CSU is responsible for paying their salaries. Those totals are not expected to be available for several weeks, but Cal Poly says it anticipates the number to be just under $40,000, about that same from Yiannopoulos’ appearance on campus in January 2017 where security costs then totaled more than $55,000

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