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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato


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MSSA commends IFO for decision

by Dannie Higginbotham

Issue date: 02/19/09 Section: Campus News
The Minnesota State Student Association commended the Inter Faculty Organization in its meeting Wednesday for the group's vote for a decision to offer a two-year pay freeze to aid budget problems.

Don Larsson, president of the IFO, presented the proposal to the senate, calling it "the earliest settlement in IFO history."

"We felt it was the best way to protect our members," Larsson said. "They stood to lose a great deal and we wanted to solve the situation early in order to ease the budget situation."

Larsson said the freeze would make it easier for administration to decide which people and courses would need to be cut.

"Preserving the quality of the institution is the main goal," he said.

MSSA President Ryan Anderson said he appreciated the step faculty took."I think this salary freeze is a tremendous help," Anderson said.

"The largest chunk of our budget is people and this really goes a long way."

The proposed freeze still needs to be passed by faculty across the state as well as from four out of seven of the state universities, the board of trustees and Gov. Tim Pawlenty.

Vice President Murtaza Rajabali brought up the issue of Facebook pictures being used as proof to the university of illegal activity, such as underage drinking.

"The best way to not get in trouble [because of pictures] is to not do anything illegal," Rajabali said.

Rajabali said unflattering Facebook pictures could have a negative impact on the lives of students.

"In high school it won't affect you much but in college it does," Rajabali said. "If an employer sees it, then you don't get the job. If your professor sees it, then you don't get the recommendation."

The MSSA's stance on Facebook pictures is that the university shouldn't get into students' personal lives.

Anderson said he still believes students should watch what pictures they upload, however.

"As far as I'm concerned, Facebook is a public forum," he said. "If you post pictures of you doing something you shouldn't be doing it's the same as sending them to the Free Press. If you get in trouble for it, it's your own damn fault."

Rajabali mentioned a March 19 Parking Advisory Committee meeting where the committee will decide whether to raise the price of bus passes. The proposal is to increase the $40 pass to $45, the $14 pass to $16 and single rides from 50 cents to 75 cents.

"This doesn't make sense to me," Rajabali said. "The price of fuel has gone down by half. So why do transportation prices need to increase?"

Rajabali said the university pays the city $74 an hour for the busses but that the rates have increased to $80.

"The increase is what they're trying to cover," he said.

Students are invited to come to the hearing and make arguments against the proposed increase.

Dannie Higginbotham is the Reporter assistant news editor