SGA eases voting pressure

by Shara Tibken

Simpson College’s Student Government Association is changing thevoting procedures of the group.

In the past, on-campus organizations were allowed to requestmoney from SGA and remain present while the issue was debated andvoted upon.

Now, it has been decided that people who are not members of SGAwill be asked to leave the Senate Room during voting.

Most of the proceedings of the meetings will remain open to thepublic, but people will not be able to be present in the roomduring the voting process.

“The group would be asked to leave just during the vote, notduring any arguments or discussion…just strictly for the vote,and as soon as the vote is done, they’d be allowed to come backin,” said senior Cory George, student body president.

The members of SGA decided to implement this policy because somesenators had been feeling pressure from groups makingproposals.

“Different senators expressed that they felt uncomfortablesometimes voting about a proposal in front of the people whoproposed it,” said senior Abby Smith, student body vice-presidentand SGA president

According to George, constituents would be allowed to view thevoting procedure through the windows of the Senate Room, they wouldonly have to be outside of the actual room.

“Last semester we had some pretty hot issues,” said George.”Some members of Senate feel possibly like advisors or some oftheir friends on some of the organizations who want their votecould have an effect or sway their vote or feel like it’s anuncomfortable situation.”

The issues that spark the most attention in SGA are those thatinvolve money proposals. The members of SGA are sometimes dividedas to what they believe should be the result of the vote.

“This year we’ve started doing a roll-call vote every time itcomes to money issues because we usually had enough discrepancythat we would have to do a roll-call vote eventually anyway,” saidSmith.

Members of the student body will still be able to find out howtheir senators voted, even though they cannot be present during theactual voting process.

“If students want to contact me, I can tell them how theirsenator voted,” said sophomore Dan Carver, student body manager.”All of the votes are recorded.”

The members of SGA allowed to vote are the presidents and foursenators from each class. According to George, Smith votes only ifthere is a tie among the other voters. The student body manager,student-body treasurer and student body president cannot vote onissues.

George still retains the power of veto.

According to George, he had not used the power of veto until the2003 fall semester.

Habitat for Humanity had requested money to sponsor a homebuilding in Nepal. The members of SGA voted in favor of theirproposal, but George vetoed the vote.

To help relieve some stress placed on the members of SGA, thenew policy will be implemented during the 2004 spring semester.

“People would still be able to see how everyone voted, but itrelieves a lot of pressure for senators,” said Carver.