Mar 222005
 
Authors: Hallie Woods

The Fort Collins City Council convened Tuesday night for a study session to discuss the ongoing issues of the Alcohol Task Force.

With a presentation led by Chief Dennis Harrison of the Fort Collins Police Services, the Council awaited the recommendations that were brought forth by the collaboration of the Fort Collins Community, CSU students and staff and the FCPS.

"The task force has a lot of community input," said Associated Students of CSU President Katie Clausen. "Members of the community, the city manager's office, the police department, and CSU are all working with their staff to see if they can put together and implement these recommendations."

The task force has worked for several months putting together recommendations with input gathered from a variety of sources. Although many suggestions arose in the task force's meetings, Harrison brought only a few recommendations to the Council.

"The report outlines 19 different areas that we as a committee have provided with 43 recommendations," Harrison said.

Several areas to control and prevent alcohol abuse were presented at the study session. The recommendations ranged greatly in their attempts to prevent alcohol abuse. Some were as simple as providing links to the FCPS Web site, the City Attorney's Web site, and information about laws and ordinances on the CSU Web site. Others suggested implementing campus and city education programs to provide information for CSU students, especially incoming freshman.

"City classes would focus on what happens when you get in trouble with the law, while campus programs would handle judicial happenings with the student and CSU," Harrison said.

A $26,000-collaborative grant was also listed on the report, including an audit program to ensure the grant is put toward its goals of prevention, enforcement and education. Grants have also gone to the production of a video entitled "The Rental World," where students leaving the residence halls to live on their own can learn how to handle leases, relationships with roommates/neighbors, parties, codes and ordinances. The video is a spin-off of MTV's "The Real World" and will show students the realities of moving off campus.

As fake IDs have become a large problem, a program to educate students about consequences and provide stricter enforcement may also be implemented.

"One of the things we want to bring to the attention of the students is that there is a separate body of laws regarding the use of fake IDs," Harrison said. "It's a misdemeanor."

While most of the recommendations will be handled in the near future, there are some larger suggestions that may take time before they can be put on the table. Selling beer at Sonny Lubick Field at Hughes Stadium will continue to be an issue as well as further studies of student Transfort, the bus system.

An off-campus residential coordinator program that has succeeded at Michigan State University is another future issue the Task Force may take on. Seniors chosen by the University would live scattered throughout student neighborhoods, and would provide guidance as well as watch after the students in that neighborhood. The off-campus residential coordinators would somewhat resemble the position the residence assistants hold in the residence halls.

"The task force made some recommendations that will take many years to see the fruit of," said Ben Goldstein, vice president of ASCSU. "I think CSU and the City of Fort Collins are moving in the right direction."

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