SGA holds open forum with President Ransdell

Leah Brown

The Student Government Association held an open forum Tuesday night with President Gary Ransdell.

During the meeting, Ransdell addressed questions SGA had about the  tuition, budget and enrollment as well as individual questions from students. 

“There will be a tuition increase for next year,” Ransdell said. 

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The exact amount of increase will be announced April 29. 

When referring to the budget, Ransdell said there will be an increase in expenses from last year that will add up to $11 million total. 

“I feel good about how we’ve been able to manage our budget,” Ransdell said. 

He said that he doesn’t think students have experienced any decrease in student services such as activities, police service or academics. 

Most of the budget cut is funded by the privatization of health services. 

“I am hopeful most of the employees can be retained, but that’s not guaranteed,” Ransdell said.

The new health center will most likely be open for public use as well as for students, he said. The center currently has 36 bidders. 

During the question and answer session, executive vice president Mark Reeves asked why SGA was not consulted before the privitizing. The president said that the decision was made privately between about four people. They could not discuss it publicly because they were unsure if the were going to have bidders.

“If I had a conversation with SGA before the staff, do you understand how unfair that would be,” Ransdell said. 

The elimination of a vice presidency position has also helped lightened the blow of the budget cut. 

“I really don’t see a noticeable impact on students,” Ransdell said. 

Reeves also asked the president if he would be willing to take a salary decrease in order to help with the budget cut. 

“Probably not,” Ransdell said. “I wouldn’t expect anyone else to do that.” 

However, after the forum, SGA passed Resolution 5-14-S with a seven to five vote which encourages him to consider a reduction in his salary. 

“A lot of important things are happening on our campus,” Ransdell said.