BYUSA changes election process

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    By AMANDA CRESAP

    Future BYUSA presidents will no longer share election tickets with the Student Advisory Council vice president.

    This change in the BYUSA charter will not leave the president running solo, however. The BYUSA president and the executive vice president will now run as a team.

    The executive vice president is a newly created position that will assist the president in his or her duties in the upcoming year. If under any circumstances the president cannot complete his or her term in office, the executive vice president will be named successor. In the past, the SAC vice president was successor.

    A new procedure is being implemented to determine the SAC vice president. Following BYUSA presidential elections, the SAC may recommend to the president-elect a group of qualified SAC vice president/chair candidates for his or her consideration.

    The president-elect may choose from those individuals recommended by SAC or draw from his or her own pool of qualified applicants or candidates.

    The president then presents his or her choice for the new SAC vice president/chair to the standing SAC for final approval.

    With sufficient basis, however, SAC may veto the president-elect’s nomination. In this case, the selection process will continue until an agreeable candidate for both parties is decided.

    The current process of electing the BYUSA president and SAC vice president on the same ticket has been in effect only for the past few years.

    Kristian Watford, BYUSA president, explained why the change was made.

    “There were conflicts between the SAC chair and the BYUSA president,” Watford said. “To solve the problem they decided to marry the two positions and run on the same ticket.”

    Watford said he feels the change in the election process is a good thing. Watford and his running-mate Peter Miller, the acting SAC vice president, ran on the same platform but then had a split of responsibilities as Miller moved to SAC chair and Watford took over BYUSA presidential duties.

    Watford commented on the decision process that accompanied the change.

    “Everyone decided together,” Watford said. “The 10 members of the BYUSA presidency, SAC, the dean of students and vice president of Student Life all know about and approve of the change.”

    Peter Miller, the SAC chair, said the decision came with serious deliberation.

    “I have mixed feelings,” Miller said. “I think that the idea is good, but the implementation needs some improvements. By the time it all comes together it should work.”

    Miller said there are advantages and disadvantages of the new system.

    “This year the executive vice president will be able to help out in fulfilling campaign promises because he or she will not have the responsibility of chairing SAC,” Miller said.

    The disadvantages arise because “SAC is one of the most influential student bodies on campus. The Chair of SAC should be elected by the entire student body,” Miller said.

    Regarding his role as SAC Vice President, Miller said, “I knew that I would be chairing SAC, but I didn’t know that it wouldn’t be feasible to do more to fulfill campaign promises.”

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