Plaza debate recap

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Mar 242011
 
Authors: Courtney Riley

Editor’s Note: In this article, it was incorrectly stated that Chase Eckerdt and Justin Safady’s campaign platforms could not be completed without adding student fees, when in fact, the opposite was stated during the debate, and according to them, all of their platforms do not require the addition of student fees. The Collegian regrets its errors.

Students gathered on the Plaza Thursday afternoon to listen to a debate among the four presidential candidates of the Associated Students of CSU monitored by Election Manager Andrew Ives. The panel consisted of a question and answer session that focused on their different campaign initiatives.

Question 1: What are your plans for ASCSU student fees?

  • Beau Loendorf said he and running partner Kevin Winn do not want to raise student fees. All of the items on their agenda are cost-effective or free, Loendorf said.
  • Tim Brogdon said he and Mike Montgomery also want to keep student fees the same by reallocating funds to satisfy initiatives.
  • Eric Berlinberg said candidates never really prepare budgets prior to elections, but he and Rachel Roberson have a draft budget already prepared.
  • Chase Eckerdt and Justin Safady said they wouldn’t have a platform that they couldn’t do at the current rate of student fees.

Question 2: What are your plans for reaching out to students to get them more involved with ASCSU?

  • Brogdon and Montgomery plan to implement Plaza Days, which would consist of them standing on the plaza one day a month asking students if they approve of their performance.
  • Roberson and Berlinberg plan to encourage incoming freshmen to get involved and teach them how important it is to be proud members of the CSU community.
  • Eckerdt and Safady said their goal is to reach out to student organizations, especially Greek Life, and also to emphasize the importance of personal, one-on-one connections with students.
  • Loendorf said he and Winn plan to be on the Plaza two times a month to get students’ input and to have an initiative adding senators affiliated with organizations, rather than solely academic colleges, to ASCSU.
  • br />Question 3: Do you have plans to add, remove or change any departments within ASCSU?

  • Berlinberg said he and Roberson have already identified the cabinet structure and job descriptions they plan to implement. He said they have taken the effective parts of ASCSU’s structure and expanded them, as well as reformed the parts that didn’t work as well. Part of their plan includes the creation a newdepartment called University Affairs that will interact with college councils and committees.
  • Eckerdt and Safady said every year candidates make a lot of incremental changes to the budget and departments within ASCSU, but the true solution is to completely reconstruct ASCSU.
  • Loendorf and Winn’s biggest change to ASCSU would be to adjust the RAIV program. The rest of their changes would consist of reallocating funding from programs that already exist to be more financially productive.
  • Montgomery said he and Brogdon plan to move the RAIV program and the Diversity and Outreach program to student services. They also intend to eliminate the Sustainability Coordinator position.

Question 4: How do you plan on advocating and supporting students with cuts in higher education?

  • Safady said he and Eckerdt will freeze student fees and will also work with state legislators to find a solution for a stream of funding to higher education. They also cited their experience advocating policy with legislators
  • Winn said he and Loendorf plan to work internally by limiting spending but also work ing with the state budget and re-jumpstarting the campaign for higher education.
  • Brogdon said he plans to “fix the potholes” by getting involved in the state’s tax policy. He and Montgomery also intend to educate students on the budget from a student’s perspective.
  • Berlinberg said ASCSU must have a more active stance and work with the Fort Collins and CSU community at a much higher level, mainly by getting students more involved and aware of the student fee process by issuing a student fee accountability report.
  • br />Question 5: Where do you see ASCSU in five years?

  • Loendorf said his vision for the future is for ASCSU to have built up what it means to be a CSU Ram.
  • Montgomery said he hopes for ASCSU to be more prevalent on campus and wants to strengthen the connections between students and ASCSU, as well as ASCSU and the state of Colorado.
  • Berlinberg and Roberson want to make CSU more visible and return to the center stage as campus leaders.
  • Eckerdt and Safady want to improve school pride during homecoming and to completely reconstruct ASCSU as an organization.
    All candidates were asked if they had a physical draft of their proposed budget. Each of the four pairs responded that they did.
    There will be a formal debate in the LSC Theatre on March 30.

ASCSU Beat Reporter Courtney Riley can be reached at news@collegian.com.

Next debate

  • When: Wednesday, March 30
  • Time: 7 to 10 p.m.
  • Where: LSC Theatre
 Posted by at 5:12 pm

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