Three student groups are vying to either create a fee levy or increase their current ones next month, but none of them will be receiving the official backing of the Arts and Science Federation of Associations.
At last Thursday’s council meeting, councillors decided to not take a stance on the referendum question to increase the fee levy for CJLO, Concordia’s only radio station, as well as the questions to create fee-levies for Queer Concordia and the Void Magazine, the only bilingual literary magazine on campus.
ASFA president Aaron Green, who personally supports all three fee-levy questions, had asked council to tell him what kind of position the umbrella organization should take, especially because some of the groups are initiatives of arts and science students. But the request was shot down by several councillors.
“I think it’s totally inappropriate for us to take a stance on fee levies of other groups,” said councillor Michaela Manson, who also sits on CSU’s council, the body that approved the three fee-levy questions that will go to referendum in March.
“I don’t think it’s a very good decision for ASFA to take a stance because fee levies are very diverse,” said councillor Khalil Haddad. “There is a lot to be said about each organization and I feel it’s up to the students to decide if they want to increase the fee levies.”
ASFA’s VP external and sustainability Chad Walcott added that it would be difficult for ASFA to produce a general stance on the fee-levies of very different groups.
Although the matter was dropped, Void Magazine editor-in-chief Cole Robertson was still given the opportunity to address council and pass around the latest issue of the magazine. His organization is looking to create a fee-levy of two cents per credit which would cover the majority of Void’s operating budget.
“I would like to see ASFA supporting groups like the Void because these are things that make the undergraduate experience at Concordia much better,” he said. “But I also understand what you’re talking about.”
CJLO’s station manager Katie Seline also said she respects ASFA’s reasoning, and said she was confident that a majority of students will vote in favour of increasing the radio station’s fee-levy from 25 cents per credit to 34 cents per credit.
“Of course we are hoping to have as much support as we can get and all of it is beneficial,” she said.