Senate discusses tuition

Senate ties tuition cap into bill funding One-Stop Shop in Memorial Union.

UND Student Senate passed a bill Sunday night allowing for a maximum of $2 million to be spent on a “One-Stop Shop” to improve student services currently in Twamley Hall.

The One-Stop Shop would combine registration, parking services, student financial aid and student account services into one area in the Memorial Union to make it easier for students to have basic questions answered.

The money is coming from the McCannel Hall Fee account, which has been collecting $15 per student from student fees for the last 20 years. The account has approximately $1.5 million to spend on the project. The other funds for the project would could come from the Memorial Union bond fee account and senate.

The big sticking point in the bill for some senators was a condition for using the money, which would not allow the university to raise tuition more than 3.72 percent from the last year’s tuition.

“We are voting on two things here, and I think it’s an unfair position to put us in,” Sen. Kyle Thorson said. “It risks a service that’s positive, and is it worth the risk? I say no — but it is for us to decide.”

Other senators commended the addition of the tuition increase cap.

“If it wasn’t for the tuition cap, I wouldn’t support this bill,” Sen. Sean McClain said. “This would send a message that we can get real business done. This is a $2 million investment.”

McClain added, “If administration is hurt by our actions, they would have taken time to support their need. For me to support their need. For me there’s a bridge burned by them not being here, we are just a formality to them.”

President Nick Creamer added that Vice President for Student Affairs Lori Reesor felt, “it would be best if I was not there.”

The bill was passed unanimously when it went to a vote after over an hour of discussion. It will now move to the university administration for consideration. Creamer said he believes the final decision will be made by President Robert Kelley.

Other business

Senate also passed a bill allocating $150 for general business cards that any senator would be able to use. The money would also cover costs for labels to be printed for senators to put on the back of the cards with their information.

“This (the labels) will violate university policy, and I don’t believe is ethical for this body,” Senator Alan Oberg said.

Oberg is waiting to hear back from Executive Associate Vice President for University Relations Peter Johnson in regards to the labels. Some senators suggested if the labels were unethical, to just use a pen to write on the back of the cards instead.

Senate also passed a resolution approving support for American Indian Heritage month, which takes place in November.

“This is a segway for other months coming up that support other diversity groups,” Senator Dashell Thunder said. “We are not leaving anyone out, and we can promote it as Student Senate.”

Thunder added that there will be a newsletter coming out soon with all the events in support of the American Indian Heritage month.

Megan Hoffman is a staff writer for The Dakota Student. She can be reached at [email protected].