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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato


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Senate invites city council members to next meeting

by Brittney Hansen

Issue date: 10/11/07 Section: Senate Notes


The Minnesota State Student Association unanimously passed a motion requesting a city council member as well as the city manager attend an MSSA meeting to present and answer questions regarding the new ordinances that were proposed at the liquor moratorium debate Monday.

They have requested city council member Mike Laven and the city manager attend the student senate meeting Oct. 17.

Senator Matt Lust reported the Legislative Affairs Committee has met with the council and explained that the department of Public Safety at certain times of the week is being overwhelmed with the large number of calls to certain areas of downtown, and linking these calls to drinking.

Motion coauthor Senator Busch said that the city council is trying to curb underage drinking and that the council would like to address complaints of noise and nuisance in downtown residential areas.

"I feel this would be important to MSSA and the entire student body, as there are several ordinances that affect students in many aspects of student life, especially off-campus students," MSSA President Chris Frederick said,

One such ordinance is the Social Host Law, which would state that anyone hosting a party would be equally responsible for underage drinking, even if they did not directly supply the alcohol.

"Mankato has a wonderful, vibrant downtown and I feel that the liquor moratorium could be limiting how much spirit that area of town possesses," said coauthor of the motion Senator Madden.

In other senate news:

• Freshman Social Studies Education major Matthew Schmidt will be the new College of Social and Behavioral Sciences senator. Advising again came up as one of the main concerns applicants are bringing to the senate.

"I believe that a lot of freshman out there interested in social and behavioral sciences aren't getting the help that they need or that advising isn't as easy to access," Schmidt said. "I would like to help bridge that. I would also like to help bring up concerns from various student life questions as well."

Schmidt said he also plans to address issues of temperature control in Armstrong Hall.

• This election was met with the resignation of College of Science, Engineering & Technology senator Leonard Che Fru, who explained that as president of the International Student Association, a member of the Newman Center and full-time student, he did not have he time he felt he needed to be dedicated to the position.

• Senator Elizabeth Larson of the College of Education also resigned, saying she is already committed to a variety of organizations and did not feel that she had the time to represent her constituency.

MSSA will be holding elections to fill these positions, as well as Allied Health and Nursing to any students who may be interested.

• Enrollment in the College of Business is up 325 to 350 students this year, said Jason Schilling after a sub committee met with College of Business dean Scott Johnson.

Schilling also addressed the possibility of differential tuition, meaning certain colleges might pay more than others depending on the costs of faculty and facilities, among other factors.

• Centennial Student Union Director Laurie Woodward reported hearing nothing but positive feedback after "spending $42,000 of your money," despite the fact that Residential Life hosted a bingo tournament out of their own funding, the athletic department sponsored A Taste of Mankato from other sources of fundraising and doubling the entrance fee from last year, and the CSU sponsoring several events not funded by student fees.

"I think we're on a trend to grow and turn it into the spirited event we want it to be. It's about university pride and bleeding purple and gold and telling everyone that our university is great," she said.

• Ryan Yonkers advised the student committee this year, as well as Kara VanSickle from the Student Events Team homecoming & special events committee. Both will be returning next year and have already begun planning this year's homecoming activities.

The committee will also be sending out a survey to get student feedback.

• MSSA President Chris Frederick and Vice President Casey Carmody had the opportunity this past week to meet with Minn. Senator Tom Rukavina, chair of the higher education committee.

"I had the opportunity to walk around our campus with him and visit a lot of our wonderful facilities. I also had the opportunity to meet with Commissioner of Finance Tom Hansen and discuss various bonding projects; his staff was very open and willing to listen to many students about the Trafton bonding project," said Frederick.

• The Academic Affairs Committee also met with Dean of Library Services Joan Roca to discuss the recent changes in library hours as the first level is now open until 2 a.m.

Some concerns mentioned were insufficient room on the first level, as well as the increased noise level. The Academic Affairs Committee and library staff are looking at the possibility of creating quiet areas after 12 a.m. on the first level, rearranging some of the furniture or adding more tables for group work, as opening another level at that hour would be difficult due to lack of funding.

• The Student Affairs Committee has changed its meeting time to every Thursday from 4:45-5:45 p.m. in the conference room located inside the MSSA office. All students are welcome to attend these meetings.

The committee will conduct research for proposed renewal of the Tenant and Landlord Committee. Student Affairs Coordinator Abbie Hill said the proposed changes to the cost of living on campus next year have increased prices in all residential halls.

• Residential Life will give tours of the new Julia A. Sears dorms during Family Weekend Oct. 19-20.

Brittney Hansen is a Reporter staff writer