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USGD strikes down health services fee increase

Undergraduate Student Government Downtown was the only one to vote against the health fee increase


Illustration published on Monday, March 20, 2017.

Undergraduate Student Government Downtown struck down the measure to increase the student Health and Wellness fee in a 2-6-1 split vote Feb. 23.

Despite this vote, the fee increase will go into effect after the Graduate and Professional Student Association, USG Tempe, USG West and USG Polytechnic all voted in favor of it last week.

The fee increase had to be passed by three out of the five student government bodies to make it a reality for students. 

USGD was originally slated to vote on the increase Feb. 16, but delayed it to Feb. 23. 

Senate President Aly Perkins, a public policy and public service sophomore, said the governing body postponed the vote because of increased student feedback. 

“We decided to demand each senator poll a minimum of fifty constituents from their respective school, and as a result that took us longer than most of the other campuses," Perkins said. "I am confident the feedback we got was some of the most thorough of any of the campuses."

Although USGD voted against the fee increase, the mandatory fee will go up by $30 per school year next fall. 

The additional dollars will go toward extending ASU Health Services office hours and expanding specialized care to all campuses. 

Read more: Letter to the Editor: Before increasing the health fee, consider decreasing the athletics fee

Veronica Galvin, a journalism freshman, was one of only two votes supporting the health fee increase. 

“Prior to the vote, each senator had to get 50 students’ feedback on the proposal, and of the 50 that I canvased from the Cronkite school, the split favored support for this measure,” Galvin said. 

Galvin said there was a significant amount of opposition within Cronkite but she believes the support outweighed the opposition.

Larisa Krueger, a medical studies freshman, sided with the opposition, but cited an almost identical reason. 

“After thoroughly polling upwards of fifty students, I found that there was a significant concern over the necessity of the fee increase, and many health students saw no reason for another fee hike with the way things currently stood," Krueger said. "Health students take measures like this especially seriously, so I have no doubt that I voted with my constituents today."

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