Elected officials wet their feet

While the majority of students breathe a sigh of relief as this Spring Semester comes to a close, the newly elected student government officials are inhaling deeply as they prepare for the dive into U politics.

The immediate tasks at hand for novices Alex Lowe, president-elect, Bobby Harrington, vice president elect, and Sara Hogan, senior class president-elect, are to decide on the structure of the future administration’s Executive Cabinet and to balance the projected $1.4 million budget.

Essentially, the three will determine how many students will work for them as board directors and in what capacity, and where to put money freed up from spending cuts made to last year’s budget.

The daunting task doesn’t come without some assistance from current Associated Students of the University of Utah employees.

“Everyone has been really helpful. It hasn’t been really that difficult,” Hogan said.

During the weeks known as “transition” around ASUU offices, Harrington and Lowe have already begun working on the projects.

Since returning from Spring Break, Lowe says they have been meeting “every day, almost all day,” considering how they want to run their office.

One thing they said they want is a stronger commitment from those appointed to the cabinet. The past year saw nine members resign, many of them to run in elections.

Lowe and Harrington said that decreasing the cabinet turnover rate would “increase the cohesiveness and allow more work to be accomplished.” They also expect each board director to put in at least 20 hours of work per week and be able to work for a good portion of the summer.

Beginning next Monday, they will accept applications for executive cabinet positions.

While they work on filling positions, they will also work with Finance Director Jared Stoker on the budget.

“It’s very hard because you have more than 250 student groups who want money,” Stoker said.

This year, student groups requested about $2.50 for every dollar that ASUU actually has. Cuts will have to be made within the next two weeks.

So far, Lowe, Harrington and Hogan have no complaints about working with each other, though they came from different parties that disagreed over representation during the elections.

“It has been fabulous,” Lowe said. “All of us are on the same page.”

“The party lines have to be erased and now we are ASUU,” Hogan said.

According to her, the three are bringing ideas from both campaigns into the administration.

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