Cleveland State Student Government Association (SGA) passed a resolution condemning S.B. 83, also known as the Higher Education Enhancement Act, at a senate session on April 21.
The resolution passed with five senators voting yes, zero no and one present. Cleveland State Student Government is the first student government in the state to pass a resolution condemning S.B. 83. They join faculty and administrators across the state in opposing the bill.
“While it is nice to be the first of anything, we hope that more, if not all, SGAs within Ohio at least look into S.B. 83 and pass a resolution of their own,” Adam M. Royko, SGA Director of Government Relations, told The Cauldron. “We are always open to collaborating with other SGAs and hope to hear from some after the passing of our resolution.”
S.B. 83 passed the Ohio Senate 21-10 on May 17. However, CSU SGA wants their resolution to be seen by Senator Jerry Cirino, R-Kirtland, the author of the bill, and any senator and representative that will take a vote on S.B. 83 as soon as possible.
“We wanted to show our direct opposition to the bill as soon as we could, and as we all know, it is harder to change or amend a bill once it is out of committee. We believed it necessary to show the Ohio General Assembly that we, as students, are not for this bill, but at the same time, give them time to reconsider the bill while in committee,” Royko said. “As student leaders, we want to work with, not against, our representatives and senators, so we hope that our resolution can be seen by not only Senator Cirino but everyone that will take a vote on S.B. 83.”
CSU’s Faculty Senate and the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) chapter also passed a resolution condemning S.B. 83 on April 12.
CSU’s SGA joined a signed letter by the SGAs of multiple Ohio universities, as well as the AAUP—a letter representing 203,784 college students in opposition to the Higher Education Enhancement Act. The letter urged the Ohio Senate not to pass the legislation. After the bill’s passing on May 17, it moved to the Ohio House where it was not added to the state’s operating budget on June 30.
This is seen as a major win for the AAUP and the many that have opposed the Higher Education Enhancement Act as the bill will have to be reintroduced in the fall–which Ohio Republicans are already promising to do.