E-cigarettes, changes to elections regulations on table at last senate meeting before spring break

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In the last senate meeting before spring break, Student Governing Association met Thursday evening to discuss amendments to election statutes, an increase to the Kansas State University Student Union operations privilege fee allocations and a proposal to allow electronic cigarettes on campus.

Alec Hildreth, senior in marketing and SGA senator, introduced a resolution to allow the smoking of e-cigarettes on campus. SGA passed a resolution for a complete smoking ban on Feb. 18, 2016. The Cats for Clean Air initiative is an effort to eliminate second hand smoke on campus.

The resolution introduced by Hildreth states, “this ban is currently not enforced by University faculty” and that “research has also proven that electronic cigarette use is safer than smoking traditional cigarettes.”

A bill for the increase of the K-State Student Union’s operation privilege fee budget was introduced by Jansen Penny, chair of the privilege fee committee and junior in industrial engineering.

Currently, 43 percent of the total operating budget for the Union is provided by the privilege fee. From that operating budget, 61 percent is allocated to payroll. The bill proposes a 3 percent ($50,961) increase to this budget to increase student wages, which are currently as low as $7.25, the state minimum wage.

“This low wage makes it hard for the Union to compete with other on-campus employers,” Penny said.

A bill proposing amendments to election statutes was introduced by elections commissioner Kristen Schau. Following a controversial election cycle, students called for changes to be made.

The proposed bill changes language to make the statutes clearer and specifies the duties of the Election Board as they relate to penalties for violations.

SGA also heard from K-State’s Student Veterans Association about the Kansas SVA Consortium. The event will be March 23 and 24. At 5 p.m. on March 23, retired Marine Corp Sgt. Kirstie Ennis will speak in the Union Ballroom, which is open to the public. Learning sessions will be on March 24 in the Business Administration Building.

The resolution about e-cigarette use on campus, the bill proposing an increase to the Union budget and the bill proposing amendments will be up for final action in the next SGA senate meeting at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 28, in Wildcat Chamber.

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I’m Bailey Britton, a freshman from Colby, KS. I am double majoring in print journalism and secondary education with a focus in English and journalism. This semester I am of the assistant news editors. Writing and reading have always been passions of mine. When I have free time, I like to play tennis and be active or curl up with a good book and a cup of coffee.