UCSU is looking to end voter apathy through eight new pieces of legislation that have been moved to a second reading.
The legislative initiatives focus on transforming the student government election structure in an attempt to gain broader student involvement and participation.
Daniel Ramos, a 23-year-old senior sociology and Spanish major said that the legislation focuses on the problems of low voter turnout and lack of student involvement in student government despite UCSU’s broad power and influence on campus.
“We recognize that voter turnout was way too low, the national trend that student governments are seeing is fifteen to twenty percent,” Ramos said. “Why is it that we can only get less than 1,000 students to turn up to vote when we control $36.3 million?”
Many of the proposed bills were founded on concerns of inconsistent elections that did not reach the student body effectively.
Will Krebs, a master’s candidate and senator for the School of Education said UCSU needs to focus on fair elections.
“It is well within our scope to provide fair elections,” Krebs said. “We should promote fairness.”
Some representatives said that the new bills may limit diversity.
Kyle Haas, a 21-year-old senior news-editorial major and co-senator for the School of Journalism (and former Web editor for the CU Independent) said that the bill to mandate a maximum of three students allowed to run on one “ticket” would limit the opinion of students on campus.
“If there is an issue that is strong enough and resonates on the campus, then we are limiting the campus by only allowing three seats,” Haas said.
Ramos said the bills during this legislative term will attempt to remedy former weaknesses in the UCSU election process.
“There was no reason to run, no reason to vote and there were barriers to running that prevented students,” Ramos said.
Tanya Phillips, a 28-year-old faculty member and co-senator for the Graduate School said the bills moved into a second reading provide for increased diversity and competition in student government elections, while increasing awareness of UCSU on campus.
“We will get more engagement and more competition and increase exposure of UCSU to the student body,” Phillips said.
The final vote on the proposed bills will occur Feb. 5 at 7 p.m. at the UCSU legislative meeting in the UMC.
Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Lauren Knobbe at Lauren.firstname.lastname@example.org.