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SGA to allow email during campaigns

Submitted by Jennifer Ellis on September 20, 2011 – 5:01 pmNo Comment

The Student Government Association (SGA) voted 6-3 in favor of allowing candidates for SGA offices to use UALR email in the campaigning process during the Senate meeting Wednesday, Sept. 14.

The passage of the bill titled Interpretation of Election Code came just after the proclamation SGA President Simone Lewis posted Monday, Sept. 12, announcing vacancies in the Senate to be filled in the annual fall election scheduled to take place Oct. 3-4.

The bill clarified a discrepancy over whether or not SGA’s Election Code prohibits the use of UALR email in campaigning, an issue that has been a source of contention in past elections. According to the March 17, 2010 edition of The Forum, Lewis’ first bid for president was challenged. Shannon Williams, a 2010-2011 SGA presidential candidate, alleged that Lewis broke Election Code by sending a mass email to potential voters. However, the challenge was unsuccessful.

The Senate’s Interpretation of Election Code went into effect immediately and resolved that candidates are allowed to use UALR email and Listservs to campaign. However, included in the bill is an amendment proposed by University College Sen. Hamza Arshad that states emails cannot contain hyperlinks.

The election application and candidate information packet also adds that candidates may only send email to UALR email accounts.

There is one Senate seat up for election in each the College of Business, College of Education and the College of Professional Studies. There are two seats available for the College of Engineering and Information Technology. And for students who have not yet declared a major, there are five member-at-large Senate positions up for bid, according to the election proclamation.

Information packets including election applications may be obtained from the Office of Campus Life and must be returned by 5 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, for regular candidate registration. The final deadline for write-in candidate registration is 5 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 28.

According to the election application and candidate information packet, to be eligible to serve on the Senate, students must be enrolled in a minimum of six credit hours, have at least a 2.0 GPA, be able to attend Senate meetings every Wednesday from noon to 2 p.m., agree to serve a minimum of two office hours per week and be a declared major for the college the candidate is running for.

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