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Off-campus Domer Dollars discussed

Justin Tardiff | Thursday, April 17, 2008

The Student Senate discussed the possibility of using Domer Dollars at off-campus locations at its meeting Wednesday. Student body vice president Grant Schmidt said he wanted the Senate’s input before contacting potential restaurants and stores.

Schmidt introduced four options for the Senate to discuss: using Domer Dollars off campus, receiving a discount from stores or restaurants for using Domer Dollars, using Domer Dollars for food delivery and receiving student discounts off campus without using Domer Dollars. He said that Domer Dollars would be limited to stores that do not sell alcohol or tobacco products.

“Some of the advantages are to get students immersed in the community … the convenience of being able to use your ID [and] the flexibility of food options,” Schmidt said.

It would also benefit off-campus students or those without easy access to ATM machines, he said.

Despite the advantages, Schmidt mentioned some possible drawbacks to the off-campus use of Domer Dollars, such as taking students away from campus life. And students who have debit cards may not view off-campus Domer Dollars as a necessity, he said.

Campus Technology chair Devin Fee stressed the need to consider how much this initiative would cost.

“The infrastructure to build the system is going to cost the University a lot of money,” he said. “It’s going to cost the businesses a lot of money to go out there and do it.”

Some senators said that student discounts may be more helpful that using Domer Dollars. O’Neill senator Kevin Kimberly said that at his Hall Council meeting, the majority of people favored discounts.

“Last night I brought this up at the Hall Council… and it was an overwhelming response that they would rather have student discounts than Domer Dollars, either for delivery or for [purchase],” he said.

Rather than use Domer Dollars at restaurants and stores, Carroll senator Nick Ruof suggested using them to pay for taxis and spare students the inconvenience of carrying dollar bills.

Lewis senator Robin Brown, however, said this may cause students to favor cab companies that accept Domer Dollars, allowing those companies to increase their prices.

“It could almost put a monopoly on taxi companies,” she said. “Then, only taxi companies that are willing to go through this process…would be in charge of it.”

The Senate also elected liaisons to other student organizations during the meeting. Austin Holler, Patrick Kane, Michael Sayles and Katie Weber, from Morrissey, Dillon, Sorin and McGlinn Halls, respectively, will serve as Senate liaisons to the Council of Representatives, with Brown as an alternate.

Welsh Family senator Kaitlyn Maloney, Lyons senator Catherine Flynn and Keenan senator Gus Gari were elected to the Campus Life Council, with Cavanaugh senator Robin Link as an alternate.

Howard senator Stephanie Mulhern was elected as liaison to the Judicial Council, which regulates student government elections. Knott senator Greg Salter and Pasquerilla West Senator Megan Sennett will work with the Financial Management Board, which allocates funds to student groups.

In other Senate news:

u The Senate passed a resolution proposing an amendment to the Student Body Constitution to “reorganize the structure of The Shirt Project.” One aspect of the amendment would make the president of “The Shirt” an enumerated position. A student can only hold one enumerated position, to prevent over-commitment and conflicts between different jobs’ responsibilities.

u Professor Thomas Noble, Faculty Senate liaison, an online Teacher Course Evaluation system will be implemented next fall.