The Elections Committee (EC) released the names of the candidates running for UGBC president and vice-president on Sunday night, one week after the pool was reopened following the prospect of an uncontested election at the initial filing deadline.
The teams running for president and vice president, respectively, are Nanci Fiore-Chettiar, Student Assembly senator and A&S ’15, and Chris Marchese, SA senator and A&S ’15; Michael Moazampour, A&S ’16, and Robert Watt, A&S ’16; and Lucas Levine, A&S ’15, and Vance Vergara, A&S ’15. At the 5 p.m. filing deadline, four teams had filed for candidacy, but one team dropped out by the end of the day.
Fiore-Chettiar and Marchese were originally the only team running, but they encouraged the EC to reopen the applicant pool to avoid an uncontested election.
The EC decided last Monday to extend the initial Jan. 16 deadline. In an email to undergraduate students on Jan. 20, the EC encouraged students to consider running and assured potential candidates that they did not have to attend the usually mandatory informational meeting in December in order to be eligible.
According to an email statement released last week by Rachel Fagut, co-chair of the EC and CSOM ’14, the EC, the Student Programs Office (SPO), and Fiore-Chettiar and Marchese felt that it would be a disservice to the student body for the election to go uncontested.
It was reported last week that the EC thought the recent amendment to UGBC’s programming ability and changes in the campaign timeline might have discouraged potential candidates from running.
In December, the Student Assembly (SA) voted 38-1 to separate programming from the student government. Fiore-Chettiar abstained from the vote. Marchese, now her running mate, supported the amendment.
In an interview after the vote, Fiore-Chettiar expressed concern about the process that lead to the amendment and the prospect that the change would not be implemented properly. Currently, the change is being organized and will take effect in the fall.
This year’s campaign season comes about two months earlier and is shorter than in past years. The changes were generated within the EC and passed through SPO administrators, with the reasoning that a sooner election would allow the elected officials more time to transition into their new roles. The shortening of the campaign period was a result of SPO’s assertion that the length of past elections was detrimental both to the student body’s interest in the election and to the candidates’ well being.
Another change in the elections code will prevent teams from campaigning in residence halls outside of time periods specified by the EC. For instance, candidates will only be permitted to campaign in Upper Campus and College Road dormitories on Feb. 11 at 6 p.m.
The EC’s election code states that the candidate teams will have a $300 spending limit for the primary campaign and an additional $150 for the general election, if they advance to it. Candidates are responsible for funding their own campaigns, and they cannot exceed the spending limits or risk sanctions.
Teams can distribute t-shirts, but they must purchase them through the EC-they are permitted to use a maximum of three banners, placed on the Stokes lawn, on the Commonwealth Ave. parking garage, and on either Newton or Upper Campus. The code states that all campaign materials must be approved by SPO, and that no materials that go against BC’s Jesuit values will be approved.
The official campaign season will only last 10 days, from Feb. 10 to 19. Voting will open on Feb. 18 and run until 8 p.m. on Feb. 19. The election results will be released that evening.
An earlier version of this article misspelled the name of VP candidate Vance Vergara. It also misstated that Robert Watt is running for president and Michael Moazampour is running for vice president. The article now accurately reflects that Moazampour is running for president and Watt for vice president.