Students reject proposal for new activity fee

Jessi Haga

A Student Government Association proposal requiring students to pay an additional $5 per semester to fund more student-related events was voted down by students in March.

The money raised would have been used by all student organizations and added onto tuition costs. 

Maddy Norgard, the SGA president, seemed optimistic about student turnout despite the loss.

“This was the closest election we’ve had in recent years, with a relatively large amount of participation,” Norgard said.

According to Norgard, 846 votes were cast in all, with 46 percent of those votes in favor of the policy.  Reaching the online and commuter students proved to be difficult for the SGA.  Typically, these students do not attend many events on campus, which was how information about this policy was provided to students. 

“We also made a website with information about the fee and linked it to the announcements and ballot page,” Norgard said.

She is hopeful the proposal will be reintroduced by the executive board of SGA in the future for another vote.

Some students felt as though the information about the student activity fee was not readily available to the general student population. 

“I think they should have provided more information for students before asking them to vote.  If students had been more aware of where their money was going, they would have probably been more likely to vote yes,” said Hannah Kuntz, a senior Speech Language Pathology major. 

Although she felt there was not much information, Kuntz did vote yes on the proposal.  She also mentioned if the policy does pass in the future, she would like to see more involvement with the Baptist Student Union and perhaps live music at some events.  Kuntz also felt the $5 fee was an appropriate amount for one semester.

If the SGA executive board decides to move forward with the policy proposal again, it is hoped there will be enough information for all students to make an informed decision about the proposal.  The extra charge is designed to raise money each semester to attract and pay for larger and different kinds of events that the SGA would not otherwise be able to fund.