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ASMSU election nearly doubles turn out from 2016, three proposals pass

April 19, 2017
<p>International relations junior Lorenzo Santavicca, directs an ASMSU meeting on Aug. 30, 2016 at the Student Services Building at 556 E. Circle Drive. Santavicca is the current president of ASMSU, an organization that serves as the undergraduate student government of the university.</p>

International relations junior Lorenzo Santavicca, directs an ASMSU meeting on Aug. 30, 2016 at the Student Services Building at 556 E. Circle Drive. Santavicca is the current president of ASMSU, an organization that serves as the undergraduate student government of the university.

ASMSU’s election results are in, and the numbers show that the student body got out and voted this year.

Bringing in just about 3,000 voters this past week, ASMSU has nearly doubled their numbers from last year.

ASMSU President Lorenzo Santavicca set a goal for the organization of generating a 10 percent voter turnout at the beginning of last week and nearly achieved it.

The roughly 3,000 voters amounted to around 8 percent voter turnout, which is an improvement from years past.

ASMSU has been bringing in around 5 percent of the undergraduate student body during the past few years.

There will be some familiar voices in the General Assembly as several representatives known for their participation in discussions are returning to the assembly.

Some of those returners include Matthew Gudenau, Stephen Brown, Josh Slivensky and Max Donovan.

Additionally, there were several other items on the ballot voted on including tax items and constitution changes.

The ASMSU tax was renewed by voters, as was the ASMSU Readership Program.

Potentially most notably, ASMSU’s Safe Ride Program was passed by the voters and will function as a full time program starting in fall 2017.

In addition to this, starting April 23, Safe Ride will run seven days a week until May 3.

In response to the passing of Safe Ride, Vice President for Finance and Operations Jason Barnett said he’s glad to see that the work he and ASMSU have put into Safe Ride has paid off.

“I did it because this is an initiative that ASMSU has been working on and it’s great to know that at the end of the day students see the need for it,” Barnett said.

He added while it may seem like the work is done now that the initiative has passed, this is not the case.

“It’s nice that the pilot is officially done, but in reality the work is now just beginning,” Barnett said. “Over the summer, myself and the new vice president for finance and operations will be transitioning and looking back at all the data that we collected from this pilot program to create a full length program.”

In regards to constitutional changes, the Muslim Student Association (MSA) was voted to be added to the General Assembly as a CORES/COPS group.

Additionally, the Spartan Armed Forces will now be officially recognized as Student Veterans of America (SVA).

After almost meeting his goal but still doubling last year’s turnout for this year’s election, Santavicca said he is heartened by the students’ interest in their student government.

“I’m very intrigued by the fact that students are respecting the work that we're doing,” Santavicca said. “I’m excited that students know that we are their student government on campus and that they want to be a part of the initiatives and the momentum that we’ve created this year.”

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