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SGA: We want more substance, less crosswalks

APSU’s Student Government Association (SGA) needs to stop passing irrelevant legislation about crosswalks and focus more on the major concerns of the students.

“The main focus of SGA legislation is to listen to the students and their concerns – find out about what students feel the problems on campus are, what they like and dislike, and then create ways to assist their needs,” Sen. Sara Alexander said.

One problem SGA senators face is creating legislation in order to fulfill their requirements and not actually implementing quality resolutions.

Senators are required to propose two pieces of legislation, one each semester, and the senate must collectively vote on the piece before the legislation becomes an act or a resolution, SGA President Ryan Honea said.

Creating legislation to add crosswalks, speed bumps, road signs and sidewalks are weak pieces of legislation because students do not care about road safety, but are more concerned with the lack of student involvement and community within the campus.

“Instead of painting a crosswalk, I wish SGA implemented resolutions to add more on campus activities, better academic resources within each department and cleaner resident halls,” junior chemistry major Hannah Musgrove said. 

According to SGA’s past legislation documents, in the 2015 – 2016 academic year, 10 out of 39 resolutions were about adding or replacing crosswalks, speed bumps or sidewalks to roads on campus.

Other weak legislation includes Sen. Haley Adkison’s resolution to solve the amount of time residents leave their finished clothes in the washing machine or dryer.

Some SGA senate and executive board members this year are standing up against insignificant legislations.

“I am very much against crosswalk, road sign and light bulb fixing legislations. If SGA writes legislation to paint crosswalks every year, we might as well paint over the entire university,” Sen. Dominic Critchlow said.

President Honea said his main focus this year is to encourage the senators to focus on the students’ concerns and not their own agenda.

“I am proud that the majority of legislation this year is going towards fixing student problems. SGA experienced healthy legislation; however, I would like to see even more sustainable changes,” President Honea said.

According to Strategic Legislation Implementation Plan, during the fall semester, only one piece of legislation dealt with adding a crosswalk – Resolution No. 1 proposed by Sens. Lillian Long and Rebecca Jacks.

In order for SGA to stop creating irrelevant legislation such as adding crosswalks or sidewalks, the senate should stop voting yes to pass the proposed piece.

Instead of focusing on campus roads, SGA should create legislation dealing with the lack of student attendance at athletic events or finding more ways to connect the university and the Clarksville community together.

Sen. Duane Kessler’s legislation about making APSU’s academic calendar similar to the Clarksville Montgomery School System’s schedule is a prime example of quality resolutions.

Also, Resolution No. 4, written by Sens. Joseph Spear and Thomas Murphy, promotes student involvement by purchasing glasses to give out to the community during the 2017 solar eclipse.

SGA senators are the voice for the university’s student body. The senate should create pieces of legislation not out of obligation or requirement, but out of true care for the students at APSU.

About Sarah Eskildson

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