The K-State Student Governing Association senators voted to “call for transparency” from the K-State administration in the campus security plan at their meeting Thursday. The resolution passed 29-25, but has yet to be signed by Andy Hurtig, student body president and senior in accounting.
The purpose of the resolution is to call for the university administration to publicly announce their plans for how to comply with a 2013 Kansas law concerning gun control. The law, HB 2052, includes several safety requirements for universities that choose to remain gun-free zones.
The SGA resolution requests a briefing by a K-State official about the university’s plans to implement adequate security measures and their impact on students. It also requests a public statement from the Office of the President concerning the plan’s general provisions, anticipated costs, possible funding options and a general timeline for implementation.
Michael Reichenberger, graduate student in nuclear engineering, was one of the bill’s authors and debated his reasoning behind the bill.
“It only makes sense to me that there should be a plan in place to implement these ‘adequate security measures,'” Reichenberger said. “And if that’s the case, and I hope it is, then I believe that we as representatives of the student body and the greater student body as a whole, and the faculty, and the community members of Manhattan should know how those ‘adequate security measures’ are going to be implemented and how that’s going to affect not only the cost of attending K-State, but more importantly in my opinion is the day to day life of students on campus.
Reichenberger also said the administration intends to maintain a gun-free campus, but no details have been given about how the university will comply with the law.
“It really is important to the student body and to the Manhattan community and especially to faculty to understand what the university plans to do in order to maintain a gun-free campus, which is something that the university has stated in numerous areas of its policies,” Reichenberger said. “I have heard from numerous faculty members that if guns were allowed on campus … that there would be essentially a mass exodus of faculty from campus.”
Reichenberger said that one way to remain gun free is to place metal detectors at the entrance of every building on campus, which could affect students and faculty.
“(Will) that mean that you have to leave for campus 30 minutes early in order to get through the security?” Reichenberger said. “I don’t know, and I want to know.”
Hurtig said he has not decided whether or not he will sign the resolution. He shared the concerns of several senators that the resolution would come across too harsh and damage future discussions with the university administration.
Athletic Director John Currie spoke to the senators about various aspects of the athletic department. Topics included the Big 12 sportsmanship concerns, the Bill Snyder Family Stadium northeast corner expansion and the new women’s soccer facilities.
Garrett Kays, senior in agricultural economics, shared a K-State Athletics presentation with the senators concerning justification for $500,000 of student privilege fee funding for the athletic department. The privilege fee committee is considering its options for the future of the funding.
Legislation was introduced requesting that Manhattan city commission consider renewing the mandatory rental inspection program.
SGA will also look at five funding requests before taking action at the next meeting. The groups requesting funds included Engineers Without Borders, the American Criminal Justice Association, the Institute of Management Accountants, Phi Beta Sigma and Society for the Promotion of Indian Classical Music And Culture Amongst Youth.
SGA commended Nicole Lane, senior in agricultural communications and journalism, for winning the Forrest Bassford Student Award. New SGA interns were sworn in.
The Engineering Student Council is seeking amendments to its constitution. SGA must approve any constitution changes.
SGA will also consider amendments to its own bylaws concerning quorum for standing committees.