IRHA asks executive slates about ideas, goals

Amber Billings

Student government experience and living in different residence areas were two topics discussed by the executive slates before the Inter-Residence Hall Association parliament.

The slates spoke to parliament at the March 30 IRHA meeting about their campaign ideas and goals for next year.

The slate of Tom Plagge and Chris Benson and the slate of Jeff Greiner and Paul Duncan already serve on IRHA parliament, while the other candidates, Luke Howell and Aaron Schmidt, do not.

Parliament members posed questions mostly to Howell and Schmidt because they were concerned about the slate’s lack of IRHA experience.

Also, the question arose of whether they were aware that resident assistants could not hold office, according to IRHA bylaws. Both Howell and Schmidt agreed that they would give up their RA positions if they were elected.

“[If elected], we will resign [as RAs] on April 20,” Schmidt said.

Zewde Demissie, Wallace representative, asked all slates about what Department of Residence policy they disagreed with the most and why.

The policies that concerned them the most were ones dealing with visitation hours, candles and 24 hours for evacuation after a student’s last final.

Greiner said running mate Duncan would continue to oppose some policies.

“I’ve been fighting all year on policies. I fought against the 24-hour policy, and Paul has fought for the Wellness [Floor] and mural policy. We will fight for anything that is restraining to the students,” Greiner said.

Howell said that because of his experience as an RA, he has been torn in two directions on some policies, such as the no candles rule in ISU dorms.

“Some students have decoration candles, and some have gone to the extent of removing the wick and having a big ball of wax. They still get written up,” Howell said.

Candidates also asked questions of the other candidates. Howell and Schmidt asked Plagge and Benson if they felt they would be at a disadvantage since both of them will be living in Hawthorn Court next year.

“One thing to consider is that Hawthorn Court is not way out there. I’ve lived in the residence halls for three years, and I have a lot of contacts there,” Benson said.

Plagge said it would not hurt their positions if one person were not living in the residence halls.

“It’s not going to put us out of touch. Every building has a different atmosphere,” Plagge said.

After the candidates talked to IRHA parliament, two bills passed by unanimous consent.

The first bill approved the appropriation of funds to the Multicultural Awareness and Support System Block Party on April 8. The event will be held in Richardson Court Association.

RCA President Nathan Ohrt made amendments to the budget, lowering the initial $800 asking price from IRHA to $535.

“This is open to all residence hall students, and I encourage everyone to come out,” Ohrt said.

The second bill, which approved the IRHA 2000 Election ballot, was passed on its first read. According to the bylaws, IRHA parliament members must approve the ballot one week prior to the elections.