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SGA discusses too many similar clubs on campus

By Ben Suazo, Sports Editor

A familiar theme was apparent in debates at the Greenhouse, as SGA approved Hofstra's latest dance club, Ballroom Dancing, and denied another club on the grounds of its conflicting purpose with an existing organization. Order was called at 6:05 p.m., and the meeting rolled on for two hours with Vice President Luke Miedreich resuming his role as chairman.

In a moment that recalled a comment by comptroller Brian Marquis last week—in which SGA's comptroller suggested the possibility of a single dance club, with multiple sections rather than the considerable number active now—Tuesday's proposal for a ballroom dance group was met with some hesitation. Senator Edward Sitt's request to hear the number of dance clubs already on campus was met with murmurs of amused support before a number was given (eight was speculated, although just six are apparent at, excluding musical theater: Danceworks, East Side Underground, Hepcatz Swing, Show Choir, IMANI and The 6th Element). One claim from the club representative was brought up again in debate, that swing dance is supposedly one of 24 subcategories of ballroom dancing, to which Sitt replied, "So should we expect 24 other dance clubs?"

Even with these concerns that Hofstra's dance clubs might begin to overlap, the Ballroom Dancing Club was approved by a substantial positive vote.

A proposal for an International Cuisine club led to another familiar dilemma, recalling last week's HCAA/SOAR debate. An existing club, Hofstra Top Chefs, was deemed by SGA to share similar aims but had gone undetected by the Rules Chairman because SGA's database did not list a purpose for Hofstra Top Chefs. SGA notified the International Cuisine representative to await confirmation whether Hofstra Top Chefs is presently active.  SGA then passed legislation by Senator Michael Hershfield that replaces the Fundraising Committee with a Programming Committee. A fundraising chair will be appointed by Appropriations Chairman Jordan Baer.

"[President Jimmy Wells] does a lot of reaching out to clubs," Hershfield of the bill. "This programming committee will take a lot of weight off his shoulders."

Hershfield also compared Hofstra's generally slack fundraising support to efforts on other campuses: "It takes a community to raise those large funds. . .We're going to try to build up that programming culture [for better fundraising]."

Other legislation was less successful. Three amendments were considered for a Club Relations Bill, designed to penalize with a $50 budget reduction those clubs who miss their declared elections without giving notice. None of the amendments stuck, and the bill could not gather sufficient support to be passed. The Club Relations Committee was left to seek alternative methods to enforce club election attendance.

"Senators should be more active with their relationship with clubs," Senator Alessandra Shaaya said afterwards, adding to her earlier dissent against the bill. Shaaya advocated greater communication with Hofstra clubs, rather than punishment that could discourage clubs from holding elections in the first place.Near the end of the long session, Delegate Stephanie Kahn was voted into SGA's Appropriations Committee. Miedreich also encouraged senators to submit fewer legislation in the coming weeks, favoring resolutions instead.

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