KINGSTON, ON – Today, SGPS President Adam Grotsky made the following statement:
The results of the 2018 SGPS Elections and Referenda revealed that the “Bus-It” student fee failed to meet the two-thirds majority threshold required for it to pass. As it stands, the consequence of this vote is that, beginning September 2018, SGPS members will lose their unlimited Kingston Transit bus access.
Following the announcement of the referendum results, the SGPS has heard from a significant number of students who fundamentally misunderstood the referendum question that was posed to them:
It is apparent that some students believed the proposed fee increase was for enhanced transit services, rather than unlimited access to the bus itself. Others thought that by voting “no”, the fee would revert back to its current price.
I strongly believe that affordable access to public transit is an essential service for graduate and professional students. If SGPS members do not benefit from the preferred student rate of $90 per year, they will need to pay the public rate of $76 per month or $912 per year.
In consideration of the confusion and misunderstandings outlined above, I am calling on SGPS Council to vote against ratifying the results of the Bus-It referendum.
All referendum results must be ratified by SGPS Council prior to taking full force and effect. This measure is in place for circumstances precisely like the one we now face.
In consultation with the SGPS Elections Team, should SGPS Council vote against ratifying the Bus-It referendum results, I will move to hold a special referendum on the Bus-It fee. The special referendum would be conducted in March 2018, using language that clearly underscores the question’s purpose and meaning.
This is an option of which I see little downside. Either the original referendum results will be reaffirmed, or it will be made clear that those results did not accurately reflect the will of the student body.
I strongly encourage students at large to share their concerns with their elected representatives, and I strongly encourage members of SGPS Council to vote against ratifying the results of the Bus-It referendum at the February 13 Council meeting.
For all other inquiries, please contact Adam Grotsky, SGPS President, at firstname.lastname@example.org.