Posts Tagged ‘student vote’

Nobody applying for ALRC position

November 20, 2009

It’s almost poetic. Weeks after the student community student newspapers made so much noise about getting a student voting member on the ALRC, only one person has applied for the new position, according to sources in city government.

That one person is Mark Woulf.

Bryon Eagon says potential applicants should get their applications in by the end of next week. Those interested need to fill out this application, which can also be found on the city’s website.

 

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MPD releases position on ALRC vote

November 3, 2009

As the “recommendation” that the mayor appoint a student member to the ALRC goes before a Council vote tonight, here is in an email sent to the mayor and the city council, Madison Police Department Chief Noble Wray weighed in on the prospect of adding a student voting member to the ALRC:

“After discussion with Madison Police Department staff to include, but not limited to, Capt. Gloede (ALRC) and Capt. Schauf (Central District), we have concluded that the proposed amendment to Ordinance No. 33.02, which allows for a student voting representative on the ALRC, will not have a direct or indirect impact on public safety. Therefore, the Department’s official position on the proposed ordinance is neutral.”

While I’m sure the MPD regularly submits position statements on issues relevant to their work, I wonder if this statement was requested by council members or the mayor, some of whom wanted to make sure they were doing what was in the interests of public safety – at least according to the police department’s interpretation of it.

It’s hard to see how the police department would have any insight into how a student member would affect bar licenses, unless they assume that the student will vote a certain way, which will lead to more bars etc.

MAYOR TO APPOINT STUDENT VOTE TO ALRC

November 2, 2009

UPDATE: Eagon negotiates compromise with mayor. Eagon’s ordinance will no longer require that the citizen appointee be a student. It will add an alder and a citizen to the ALRC with a recommendation to the mayor that the citizen be a student. The mayor plans to appoint a student rep for a three year period. Eagon’s proposal will also keep the non-voting student member to the ALRC, meaning that students will have one voting member and one non-voting member at the table.

Mayor Dave Cieslewicz met with Ald. Bryon Eagon and promised to add a student member to the Alcohol License Review Committee regardless of whether Eagon’s proposal to require a student voting member on the committee passes the Council tomorrow.

The ALRC, which is likely to add another alder and another “citizen appointee,” will be voting on whether the citizen appointee must be a student tomorrow. However, Cieslewicz, has stated that he plans to appoint a student whether he is required to or not.

Bryon Eagon told The Sconz that the move was not ideal, but still a victory for students.

Coalition of students strategize to win ALRC vote

October 29, 2009

On Sunday a group of students, including members of the Badger Herald and Daily Cardinal editorial boards, met to discuss strategy to mobilize support for Ald. Bryon Eagon’s proposal to add a student voting member to the ALRC, as well as to win the Council vote on the measure next Tuesday.

Eagon and current ALRC non-voting rep Mark Woulf were at the meeting and gave the other group members advice on how to best influence Council members on the vote. Herald and Cardinal editors came up with a list of important student organizations to be contacted, including WISPIRG, the College Democrats and even Hoofers, an outdoor sports organization.

I was there primarily to observe the meeting, although I do support the proposal – though with not as much vigor, perhaps.

The papers decided to continue pushing the issue, evidenced by the editorials on Monday, with the hopes of motivating students to email or call their alders, but more importantly, to show up for the vote and make an impression on Council members.

Here is a very rough list of predictions on how members of the Council will vote. The projections were made for a variety of reasons, including support or opposition to the proposal in the past, general political philosophy or connections with other members on the Council (e.g. gets along well with Eagon).

In favor: Bidar-Sielaff, Verveer, Eagon, Rummel, King, Soloman, Clear, Maniaci, Rhodes-Conway

Against: Schumacher, Compton, Clausius, Skidmore, Thuy

?: Palm, Cnare, Schmidt, Sanborn, Bruer, Kerr

The Nitty Gritty boycott

October 23, 2009

I’ll start off by stating an obvious point, which my cherished commenter Paul Axel has advanced on this site on several occasions. The Nitty Gritty was well-deserving of a student boycott long before its owner “disrespected” students. It’s a terrible bar and it’s frankly an embarrassment that so many of-age students crowd into the establishment during “Power Hour” to guzzle down watered-down cocktails and be pushed up against walls vibrating to the sound of Miley Cyrus because the bouncers apparently do not respect the fire code (by the way, Shapiro earlier had the ALRC capacity of the place upped).

Like I said earlier, whether or not I support the Herald and Cardinal’s positions, I am happy to see the campus papers discover their student attitude. And as a history student, I appreciated the Declaration of Independenesque bullshit the Herald put in its version. The Herald – especially the Herald – tends to waffle and triangulate on student issues, and many of the ed board members fear nothing more than being considered liberal.

Because I think having a student vote on the ALRC is a good idea, I see no reason to oppose the boycott of the Nitty. Although the idea of a boycott feels mean-spirited to many-a-gut, it is an effective way of demonstrating a position. The target does not have to be evil or doing evil things. Shapiro did something we don’t like and we’re simply trying to get him to change his position.

Nevertheless, having a student vote on the committee is by no means intuitive. The idea of having constituencies have votes can be questioned. It makes sense to have expert witnesses and have community input on all legislation, but there is not necessarily a reason that any special interest or constituency should have a permanent place at the table – let a lone a vote. However, that’s the system we have. So we might as well get one of our own that same privileges that other groups have.

ALRC student vote passes committee

October 6, 2009

Ald. Bryon Eagon’s proposal to add a student voting member to the Alcohol License Review Committee was approved by the Common Council Organizational Committee and now awaits approval by the full Council.

After making a series of language changes, Eagon succeeded at winning the votes of Council President Tim Bruer and Ald. Mark Clear, both of whom voted against the original proposal on September 1. Along with the votes of Eagon and Alds. Marsha Rummel and Shiva Bidar-Sielaff, the measure passed 5-2, with Alds. Michael Schumacher and Judy Compton voting against.

Compton disapproved of adding a member to the ALRC who may not be old enough to legally drink. However, both Eagon and Bidar-Sielaff see potential in the possible addition of an underage member. Both believe the underage student population is under-represented in the city’s entertainment and social options. For instance, Eagon openly voiced disappointment last month when developer Scott Acker ditched plans to create a restaurant/bar at University Sq. after dealing with a skeptical ALRC. Supporters of the project saw the bar as a venue where 21+ students and their underage friends could socialize.

For more on the language, go to Bryon Eagon’s blog.