SGA discusses supporting local law enforcement

By RAEGAN NEUFELD
Tiger Media Network

Members of the Hays Police Department and the University Police Department spoke to senators last November about civilians interrupting officers carrying out their duties. Such instances have continued this year, like an incident described at the Stuent Government Association meeting on Thursday. 

According to Sen. Alex Johnson, a beer can was thrown at an HPD police cruiser while an officer was driving by a college student’s house on Saturday night. The incident was also described on the Ellis County KS Scanner Facebook page. According to a post made on Sept. 20, the officer was patrolling the 400 block of Seventh Street when the beer can was thrown. Johnson mentioned the incident in hopes it could later be discussed with HPD and UPD.

“Because it was near the Fort Hays campus and involved Fort Hays students, university police had to show up,” Johnson said.

President Ella Burrows noted the incident will be discussed during a meeting between herself, Vice President Emma Day and the two police departments. She also said they will discuss how to provide support for local law enforcement.

“I know in the past we’ve talked about maybe doing a letter condemning actions of this sort, so that’s something we can discuss further,” Burrows said.

A similar topic covered during Thursday’s meeting was party registration. According to Burrows, students can contact HPD prior to throwing a party and if any noise complaints are reported, officers will issue a warning before a ticket is issued.

“It’s a really great way to encourage safe fun on the weekends, keep students out of trouble and build the relationship between our students and the community,” she said. 

Because only a small number of students use party registration and the system used to be available through the SGA website, Burrows and Day are currently working on a way for the SGA to better support the registration system. The latest information Day had on the situation was that she had reviewed the process and reached out to HPD.

Burrows also reported on the recent Kansas Board of Regents and Students’ Advisory Council meetings she attended. The Students’ Advisory Council, which consists of the student body presidents from each state university, set goals of sustainability, engagement and accessibility.

“We’re focused on how we can make higher education more accessible, and how we can make sure that everyone already in higher education is given the skills for success while they’re in college and once they graduate,” Burrows said.

Other business included mentioning the university will know which academic programs are up for review by KBOR next month. Those programs will be revealed at the Oct. 19 and 20 KBOR meeting.

Due to the Homecoming Bonfire, the next SGA meeting will be at 7 a.m. Thursday in the Black and Gold Room.

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