Last night’s meeting of the Student Governing Association’s Student Senate featured lengthy debates on two separate pieces of legislation, each of which ultimately passed in a landslide vote. Bill 13/14/36, a Continuance in the Office of Student Activities and Services Privilege Fee, went to the floor first.
The primary point of contention in the bill was its funding for a purchase of OrgSync, an online client for managing student clubs and organizations. Several senators voiced concern over the $21,000 price tag, saying that many of OrgSync’s features are already available on K-State Online. Others stated that investing in technology is not a wise move, as the program could become obsolete in a short time.
Senators on the positive side of the debate, however, noted that there’s a good chance KSOL won’t be around for much longer. According to SGA’s Technology Director Theo Stavropoulos, senior in management, the probability that K-State replaces KSOL within the next three years is upwards of 90 percent. Because of this and the tools for group communication, event management and information sharing on OrgSync, the majority of the Senate supported the move and passed the bill 46-4-0.
The bill also cut funding from the Collegiate Readership Program, which provides students with free copies of five local and national newspapers. As the program has found to be underutilized, the Privilege Fee Committee redirected a portion of its funding. This could lead to a cancellation of the service during the summer months or a decrease in the number of stalls on campus.
The Student Affairs Committee also conducted a presentation and survey on the university’s smoking policy to determine whether the body should seek a full ban on campus smoking, a partial ban, or continue to enforce the current policy. As it stands, smoking is prohibited within 30 feet of any campus building.
During the first open period, City Commissioner Rich Jankovich addressed the Senate. The second-term commissioner began by addressing the construction project on Bluemont Avenue, which he said he expects to be finished before students leave for winter break in mid-December. He also said that a Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant will be opening in Manhattan in Spring 2014, an announcement that was met with an enthusiastic round of finger snaps, the Senate’s quieter version of applause.