ASCWU campaigns underway

Charles Harding/The Observer

Ray Payne, Staff Reporter

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On Monday, approximately 15 candidates for ASCWU met to go over campaign rules and officially kick off their campaigns.

Over the next month, these candidates will be making their case to the student body in preparation for the general election on May 5.

“I really want to implement safety and make campus a pleasant place to be,” said Gary Epp, Vice President of Student Life and Facilities candidate.

Most of the positions on the ASCWU board will have competition.

“I think that it’s going to be a really great election … there’s a really great turnout, “said Olivia Durham vice president for equity and community affairs. “Probably better than a lot of us expected, especially with four people running for VP for Academic Affairs which was really encouraging to see.”

On April 20, there will be a primary held for Vice President of Academic Affairs in order to narrow the field of candidates. All other positions will be handled during the general election.

Some of the things the election commission went over during the meeting were spending caps, which are set at $500 for candidates who have to compete in a primary and $400 for candidates who only have to compete in the general election.

It was made clear that ASCWU student government will not be providing funds to candidates for their elections.

However, students will be allowed to rent PA systems and bullhorns and the SURC Pit and Patio can be scheduled twice for events.

Candidates will still be limited to only posting information in authorized areas and are prohibited from soliciting in the SURC. Placing items on people’s cars without prior permission is also not allowed.

Additionally, students will not be able to use sidewalk chalk as a means for campaigning.

Violation of election rules could result in a penalization, fines, or possible disqualification.

There is currently one debate scheduled on May 4 which will be held in the SURC Pit at 6 p.m.

A public forum will be held the day before the debate where the general public will have the opportunity to get to know the candidates prior to the election.

Throughout these forums, public involvement is going to be encouraged so that everyone will have the opportunity to have their issues addressed.

“All the candidates seem to be really passionate so I think that it’s going to be a good election,” Durham said.

Each candidate has their own issues they’re concerned about and are focusing on changing.

“What I really want to focus on is making clubs and organizations more visible,” said  Alex Horning, vice president of clubs and organizations.

For some candidates there are very specific changes that they want made including adjustments to the parking pass system on campus.

“Specific changes, the first one and probably the biggest one is parking passes,” said Brady Batt, ASCWU President candidate. “But not necessarily a system of changing the price, but a system of your reserved spot for that parking spot in terms of if you buy a parking pass you are not guaranteed a spot to begin with.”

One candidate is seeking to make the campus safer for pedestrians.

“Along Dean Nicholson my main goal is to implement lit crosswalks because of the amount accidents with people on bikes that has happened there,” Epp said. “I believe the number of accidents there can be hugely reduced and I can have a great impact on the safety of the traffic.”

Overall, the general attitude of the entire meeting was positive and encouragement was given to all of the candidates. Despite the differences on what exactly they wanted to do, all of the candidates wanted to see the improvement of the environment on campus for all individuals.

Online voting for the general election will begin at midnight on May 4 and polling booths will be open on campus from 8am to 8pm to ensure students have an opportunity to vote on campus. Absentee ballots will also become available in SURC 263 on May 4.

“I think it’s really important for students to have their voice heard on campus,” Durham said.

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ASCWU campaigns underway