SGB thanks students for protesting tuition tax proposal

By Erin Block

Student Government Board members announced at last night’s meeting that they are hopeful for two… Student Government Board members announced at last night’s meeting that they are hopeful for two things this week: the possible postponement of the mayor’s Fair Share Tax and the Pitt vs. Cincinnati football game.

Board president Kevin Morrison thanked Nick Trainer, the Board’s governmental relations chair, for his work to lobby against the proposed tax on Pittsburgh college students, which would levy 1 percent of students’ tuition for the city.

Morrison said he’s excited about the progress SGB made with the tax and the response from Pitt students.

Trainer thanked students for participating in petitions and attending City Council meetings. He said he hopes the Council’s vote, scheduled today, will be postponed to a later date.

“If the tax is postponed, students will not see the tax on the upcoming budget,” he said.

Trainer added that students have a “good chance” of avoiding the tax.

Trainer also said that Rep. Paul Costa, D-Wilkins Township, will propose legislation to prohibit any similar tax from happening anywhere in Pennsylvania.

Students should call their local representatives and show their support for Costa, he said.

He encouraged students to become active if Council were to approve the tax.

“If this tax passes,” Trainer said, “I encourage students to register and vote [those City Council members] out.”

Board members also asked students to wear blue and gold to this week’s Pitt vs. Cincinnati football game to show Pitt pride.

Board members Max Greenwald and Lance Bonner, along with Pitt Athletics, will host a pep rally outside the Cathedral of Learning on Thursday from 8 to 8:45 p.m.

Football players and alumni are scheduled to attend. Board members encouraged students to participate.

“The team needs to know we’re supporting them,” Morrison said.

SGB Notes:

— Pitt women’s club volleyball was approved $832 of its allocations request and denied $297.55 to attend a tournament.

— The Board approved $1,800 for Panther Paintball Club to buy paint to use during a tournament.

— SGB denied the Lady Panthers lacrosse’s request for $8,009.20 in full.

— Matthew Grau was selected to serve as allocations chair for the upcoming 2010 term.