MSA follows GAPSA’s lead, votes to withdraw from SLC

MSA's president said the Twin Cities student groups could be more effective lobbyists

Seth Woerhle

The Minnesota Student Association unanimously voted Tuesday to withdraw from the Student Legislative Coalition and called for a restructuring of the lobbying body.

The vote put MSA in line with the Graduate and Professional Student Assembly, which unanimously approved the same resolution Monday.

The resolution claimed the SLC, which provides student voice on legislative issues, is ineffective, citing a lack of action during the recent midterm election.

It also claimed MSA and GAPSA sponsored events, such as voter rallies, that should have been the SLC’s responsibility.

GAPSA President Chris Frazier said the unanimous approval marked the second joint resolution ever adopted between MSA and GAPSA – the first being a resolution supporting efforts to bring Gopher football games back to campus.

The decision was controversial because of SLC support from other University campuses, such as Morris and Duluth.

Kevin Vogeltanz, an SLC representative from Morris, told The Minnesota Daily in an interview earlier last week that he would rather see the organization retooled with support from Twin Cities’ student groups than have the Minneapolis and St. Paul campuses walk away from the group.

MSA legislative affairs representative Andy Pomroy said other University campuses have claimed lobbying the state government would be too expensive without support from the Twin Cities campus, whose students pay the majority of SLC’s $100,000 budget through refusable $3 fees.

MSA President Josh Colburn said he was still interested in supporting a restructured SLC and working in coordination with the other campuses but that MSA and GAPSA could lobby more effectively for the Twin Cities campus’ students.

“This means that (undergraduate and graduate students) would be spending $57,000 less money on legislative programming,” Colburn said, explaining the resolution at the MSA forum.

“Fiscal responsibility means holding people accountable and triming the fat,” MSA Vice President Eric Dyer said. “SLC is fat.”