Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

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ASM gearing up for spring elections

The Student Election Commission began accepting applications Monday for candidates for the April 12-14 spring 2010 Associated Students of Madison elections.

The election ballot will include student representative seats and the NAT UP 2010 referendum, which could increase segregated fees by $54.19 to allow for additions and renovations to the Natatorium.

Preparations for the elections are underway, and the Student Election Commission is hosting a number of events in the hopes of increasing traditionally low student turnout.

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Students interested in running for positions on the Student Service Finance Committee and Student Council can apply to run by March 21. Any student who wants to run can access the application through the ASM website.

While last semester there were only a few spots available for freshmen and sophomores, this semester there will be spots available for the full student body by specific school, according to Renata Danks, SEC Candidate Coordinator.

There are 29 seats available on Student Council out of the total 33. The freshmen representative seats were filled last election.

Incoming freshmen are elected in the fall and current freshmen can run for a spot in their respective schools.

“Anyone can run, including graduate [students],” SEC Chair Noah Pearce said.

Once the Student Council representatives are elected, they will then appoint a chair, vice chair and secretary.

According to Pearce, the voter turnout for the fall elections was approximately 7.2 percent of the student body.

Danks said the turnout for the fall was better than past turnouts.

In order for the NAT UP 2010 referendum to pass, 15 percent of students have to vote on it.

Pearce said he was not sure if student voter turnout has ever exceeded 15 percent, however he said he hopes the NAT UP 2010 referendum could increase voter turnout.

Approximately 15 percent of the student body turned out to vote on the referendum on a new ASM Constitution in Spring 2009.

The SEC has planned events to increase voter turnout among students, including a meet-and-greet with candidates and Bucky Badger making appearances on campus the Monday and Wednesday before the election.

Due to the success of one meet-and-greet last semester that included food, there are two such events scheduled for April 8 and 12 on Library Mall for students to meet and talk with the candidates about their platform.

Pearce said the idea is students have to talk a little with the candidates before they can get the pizza offered at the events.

Although the SEC is a neutral body and will not support any particular candidate, Pearce said it is important every student vote in the elections.

Students can access the ballot from April 12-14 on their computers through the ASM website.

Pearce said the election will be advertised widely through posters and flyers and computer kiosks on campus will increase access to the ballot for all students.

The ballot will open at 8 a.m. on April 12 and last until 5 p.m. April 14.

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