Students debate tailgating changes

Awareness considered best response to new tailgating policies.

Awareness is the best response to enforcement of the new tailgating policies Dean of Students Randy Hyman told the Student Government Association Wednesday.

Hyman said DAILY NEWS coverage of the policies in addition to a press release widely distributed around campus were included in the efforts to make students aware of the tailgating guidelines. Knowledge of the guidelines, Hyman said, were important when enforcing them.

After reviewing the guidelines with the student senate, Hyman answered questions from senators about enforcement and police presence at the tailgating site.

Freshman senator Katie Carlson asked Hyman if the guidelines are a trial or a permanent fixture of university policy. Hyman said while the policies are permanent, they could be adjusted.

Other enforcement measures Hyman mentioned included increased University Police presence at the tailgating site. Hyman said police will be checking for underage drinkers, but not searching vehicles.

SGA president Tommy Rector told the senate that tailgating was faced with two options. One option, Rector said, was to eliminate the activity completely. The other option was to impose regulations to make tailgating more controlled and safer. After discussion with administration, Rector said, the favored option was to keep tailgating, but with enforced regulations.

Senator Billie Laverghetta asked Rector if other universities have imposed regulations on their tailgating festivities. Rector said almost all universities similar to Ball State do enforce guidelines, some of which are more strict.

Tailgating time limits, which is one of Ball State's new policies, is imposed at most universities like Ball State, Rector said. He also said some schools require tailgaters to pay $60 for a season-long pass for a plot of land on which they can tailgate.

Rector encouraged senators to inform others of the new policies. He said his biggest fear is having students get cited or arrested for not following the new guidelines.

Other than reacting to the tailgating policies, the student senate tabled two pieces of legislation Wednesday and introduced a new resolution, which would be a collaboration between SGA and the Residence Hall Association.

Elimination of Saturday finals legislation was tabled until next week, according to academic affairs committee chairwoman Megan Pickens, to get more support from the University Senate.

Committee member Nick Zuniga, who co-authored the resolution with Pickens, said the committee would be meeting with University Senate chairman John Emert to discuss the legislation.

"It's an issue that is really important to a lot of people on campus, both faculty and students," Pickens said. "That's the main reason it was tabled. We want to get more information from administration and faculty."

Student crisis management and response team legislation was also tabled for a week because the university already has a crisis management protocol, according to student safety chairwoman Michelle Hildebrant. Hildebrant said the protocol includes a crisis response team, but that it is composed entirely of faculty. Hildebrant expressed concern that no students were on the team and said the legislation would be rewritten to put students on the team.

The student services committee introduced legislation Wednesday, which, if passed, would place benches outside of the Studebaker East Complex. RHA issues and facilities chairman Stuart Whitcomb said SGA and RHA will cooperate on this resolution to give it a stronger student voice.

SGA will discuss and vote on all three pieces of legislation next Wednesday.

Greek community reacts to tailgating debate


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