The Daily Tar Heel

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Thursday January 20th

New Homecoming fee proposed to attract bigger acts

A new fee proposed by Carolina Union Activities Board leadership could bring bigger acts to the Homecoming scene as soon as next year.

The fee, brought by CUAB president Cierra Hinton, will go toward the Homecoming concert budget to help bring more popular — and expensive — acts to campus in future years.

The proposed amount for the fee is undetermined, Hinton said.

CUAB will survey students before Thanksgiving break to gauge how much students are willing to pay for the fee, she said.

If the fee is approved by UNC administration and student government, it will appear on the Spring 2012 ballot as a referendum.

Hinton thought of the fee while looking back on this year’s process, which chose indie rock band The New Pornographers to headline the Homecoming concert with Raleigh-based The Love Language.

“It seemed as though the artists the selection committee wanted and that students would have loved to see were out of our price range,” she said.

Freshman Omololu Babatunde said she would be happy to pay the fee if it brought better acts to campus.

“I thought, coming to a big school, that there were going to be a lot of big acts,” she said.

Babatunde said this expectation came from the University of Delaware, a school in her home state, that brought popular acts like Wiz Khalifa and Ludacris to its campus.

Homecoming festivities are entirely sponsored by CUAB, the CAA and the General Alumni Association. CUAB’s budget is generated by one-third of student activities fees. The General Alumni Association is funded by membership fees.

Hinton said paying for the concert comes entirely from CUAB’s budget, and that this year, it became apparent that the concert needed a third funding source.

Senior Jake Brown said he might be willing to pay a fee for better acts, but it would depend on how much the fee is.

He said though he enjoyed past Homecoming acts like hip-hop rockers Gym Class Heroes and rapper Fabolous, he thought this year’s choice came from “out of left field.”

Zachary de la Rosa, speaker for Student Congress, said the likelihood of the fee’s being passed is up in the air.

“I can imagine several people in congress who would be ardently for it,” he said.

“I can also imagine several people who would be against any new student fees.”

Student Body President Mary Cooper said she thinks the University is trying to increase the hype around Homecoming.

“These are the growing pains of making a very special weekend for our alumni to come back to,” she said.

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