UPDATE: Its official, alcohol sales will be allowed at all ECU sporting events starting this fall.
The board of trustees approved the resolution Friday morning.
It was a unanimous vote to allow alcohol sales at East Carolina sporting events.
The hope is to start this fall with football and men’s and women’s basketball —- then baseball in the spring and then start allowing alcohol sales at other sporting events as time goes on.
Laetner Furford is a super senior at ECU; he’s excited about being able to buy alcohol at sporting events.
Furford said, “Everyone enjoys beer, and they want to have a good time at the game, and now being able to buy at the stadium, kids who are 21 will be able to pace themselves, enjoy the game.”
That’s what it’s all about, enhancing the game day experience while also adding another stream of revenue.
ECU athletic director Jon Gilbert said, “I am optimistic that it will be good for people who want to partake but I also want to make sure we are providing an environment where if you choose not to go in that direction, you’re having a really good experience.”
Gilbert says he wants people to enjoy themselves but he also wants to keep things family friendly.
The plan is to have certain stands in certain sections where alcohol will be sold and to have areas in the different sporting venues where alcohol will not be allowed.
On the WNCT Facebook page, many of you have voiced your concerns:
Angelene Carmichael saying — “People are going to drink if they choose to, but why make it easier for them?”
Joan Haley adding —- “This is a big big mistake.”
The college says they will promote UBER and LYFT as ways to make sure you get home safe and alcohol will not be sold during the 4th quarter of games, something Laetner agrees with.
Laetner said, “I’ve been at games and thought ‘man I’d love another beer but there’s still 3 quarters of football left, I think with the university’s hand in it, it’ll give leadership and more direction on how we should act and behave.”
There are also plans to have extra security in the areas where alcohol is allowed.
Also at Friday’s Board of Trustees meeting, interim chancellor Dan Gerlach spoke about what he hopes to accomplish this upcoming year.
The East Carolina University Board of Trustees will meet next week to discuss budget, and allowing alcohol sales at athletic events.
Last month, ECU said they were going to have an immediate hiring freeze due to an expected budget decrease of $16 million for the fiscal year 2020-2021.
On July 11 and July 12, ECU trustees will discuss some topics including athletics, enrollment and health sciences.
Additionally, the Board of Trustees’ July 12 meeting agenda says they will discuss “Alcohol sales at athletic events.”
ECU says it will have an immediate hiring freeze, due to an expected budget decrease of $16 million for the fiscal year 2020-2021.
ECU’s Interim Chancellor, Dan Gerlach, says none of the expected shortfall is because of any direct state policy change but is caused by a decrease in undergraduate, graduate and transfer student enrollment in Fall 2018. That led to a decrease in overall revenue for ECU, which gets most of its revenue from student credit hours and enrollment fees.
ECU officials expect the Fall 2019 freshman class to be larger than last year’s, but, Gerlach says, recent efforts to help students complete their degrees on time has led to record numbers of graduates, without enough incoming freshman to replace them all.
To facilitate the $16 million decrease in ECU’s budget, Gerlach says he has asked each department to reduce their individual budgets for the 2020-2021 fiscal year and has also ordered immediate hiring freezes for nearly all positions.
In part of a statement released Tuesday, Gerlach said,
“No new positions (other than those necessary to meet grant requirements) will be authorized without the approval of the Executive Council.
Vacant positions (for all funding sources) are frozen, with exceptions subject to the recommendation of the Executive Council.
Exceptions will be focused on the life/safety of students and employees; regulatory and legal requirements; and enrollment growth.
No shifting of positions to support from existing fees with exceptions subject to the approval of the Executive Council.
Substantial capital projects not related to health & safety or enrollment growth may be postponed.
The targets for budget reductions by Division have been provided to the appropriate Vice Chancellors, who will be discussing with their respective divisions.”
ECU says its Dental School and the Brody School of Medicine will not be impacted by the expected $16 million in budget cuts.