Students can get involved in lobbying process

I would first like to thank The Daily Illini for their editorial on the Illinois Student Senate’s U of I Day. Upon asking friends about the article, many were interested in hearing more about happenings in student politics.

The Editorial Board made some very keen and accurate comments. Addressing these concerns, the Committee on University Budget holds an annual letter drive inviting students to our office working with them to write to their legislators about how cuts in funding affect their education. The Editorial Board mentioned the need for specific proposals. The committee also authored the “Capital Funding Resolution” which was sent with a letter to legislators. The resolution supported the passage of SB 1110 which included about 180 million in capital funding for U of I. Throughout our lobby process, our message has been that investing in U of I is an investment in the state. We are a source of innovation creating jobs and leaders in every field who work within and throughout Illinois.

Finally, letter drives and calling individual legislators are a matter of manpower. According to Representative Chapin Rose, students and their parents calling their legislators would create further incentive for legislators to increase funding for U of I. It is a common misconception in politics that young people are apathetic. I disagree with this and believe that every student here cares about the University as much as I do.

That is why I challenge the reader to call your legislators along with your parents (see www.ilga.gov) and tell them that cuts in funding increase your tuition and create higher class sizes at U of I. Tell them that in order to earn your vote, the legislator needs to vote to increasing operating funds and either author or support a capital budget for U of I.

James Win

Chief of Staff, Illinois Student Senate

Vice-chair Committee on University Budget

Senior in LAS