North Texas Daily

Comparing SGA’s presidential candidates

Comparing SGA’s presidential candidates

April 03
00:05 2012

Editorial

The election for Student Government Association president and vice president kicked off Monday. In a roundtable discussion, the North Texas Daily Editorial Board sat down with presidential candidates Morgan Ray and Rudy Reynoso with their respective vice presidential candidates Adam Hasley and Justin Wood.

Both candidates made it clear that their primary goal was getting UNT students more involved in student organizations. As such, the Daily evaluated the candidates’ answers on three key issues facing students: budgeting, parking and the new student Union.

Student Union

Construction on the new Union will displace both Stovall and Scoular halls, and the administration has no long-term plans beyond temporary buildings for the College of Visual Arts and Design and the Dance Department, which are housed there.

Wood said he couldn’t make guarantees to the student body because that would lead to a “slippery slope.” Instead, he acknowledged that he and Reynoso want students to know the Union was an investment, and that they plan to follow through with the administration’s current arrangement.

Hasley did offer a guarantee; student input will be heard, and they will remain informed throughout the process.

Neither side could offer a plan for new CVAD and Dance buildings beyond lobbying for funding at Capitol Day. Because of Ray and Hasley’s approach of speaking with the students rather than to the students, they could have a slight edge on the issue.

Parking

Regarding parking, both sides had said they planned on working with Ginny Griffin, associate director of parking and transportation services, on taking out meters along Welch Street and changing those spots to permit parking.

Beyond Griffin’s proposed plans, Wood stated that he and Reynoso hope to create a temporary discount on the usually vacant parking garage to offer a better parking option for students, making it a potential win-win. For that, the parking issue leans in favor of Reynoso and Wood.

Budgeting/Fiscal Policy

Ray and Hasley have a very detailed plan in regards to SGA’s budget.

They plan to reallocate $20,000 in the budget into SGA programs like Eagle’s Nest, Raupe Travel Grants, and Co-Sponsorships, which directly benefit student organizations. To do this, they plan to combine paid positions, dropping their own pay down to $9.50 an hour and alleviating the burden of the combined positions by increasing student volunteering.

Reynoso and Wood didn’t have as detailed of a fiscal plan. They believe that $20,000 should remain in SGA hands and that combining positions would over-burden employees.
Neither addressed the increased efforts on behalf of volunteers compensating for that lack of manpower.

For their preparedness, planning and financial respect for other organizations, this issue is a clear win for Ray and Hasley.

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