Director declines relief from stiff rules

Director+declines+relief+from+stiff+rules+

John Richard

Student Government Association President Cliff Maloney working at the student government office. The proposal was supported by many students, but was shot down by university officials.

Brandon Zeris, Editor-in-Chief

A set of alcohol rules proposed by the Pitt-Johnstown Student Government Association, which would have eliminated restrictions for anyone who is of legal drinking age, has been denied by an administrator.

Although the rules were supported by many students and would have more closely mirrored a real-world environment, it’s no surprise that they were shot down, according to Student Government Parliamentarian Christian Woo, who spearheaded the initiative with Secretary Alexis Prusick.

“I kind of saw it coming,” Woo said.  “It was pretty radical, and I would have been surprised if it passed.”

Student Government President Cliff Maloney said that new rules are being proposed to more closely mimic the real world on campus, but added that current rules don’t allow for such an environment.

Maloney said that regardless of the rules in place, they have been and will continue to be broken.

“The rules may not allow large quantities of alcohol, but large quantities of alcohol can still be found on campus. The rules do not allow for glass bottles, but glass bottles can still be found on campus,” Maloney said.

Junior Anthony Macchiaroli agreed with Maloney and said that he’s frequently seen glass bottles on campus.

“People buy them anyway. (The rules) don’t change anything,” he said.

Macchiaroli said that campus residents should be able to enjoy the same rights as those who live in off-campus housing.

“It’s considered our residence, so I don’t see the difference if we had our own apartment and drank what we wanted,” he said.

Maloney requested a response from Associate Vice President of Student Affairs John Wescott. In the mailed response, Wescott said that the proposal would create an environment close to the real world, but added that it’s not the type of setting Pitt-Johnstown needs.

“SGA’s proposed changes to the current Alcohol Policy … is simply too liberal a stance in respect to the educational environment we look to establish and are charged with maintaining,” he said.

“We have a responsibility to the collective student body in terms of the constructive, supportive living/learning environment we strive to create and provide.”

Alpha Sigma Alpha sorority member Brooke DiGiorgio said the current set of rules doesn’t promote a better learning environment, but creates added hassle for those of legal drinking age.

“It doesn’t encourage people to drink less, it makes them sneakier about it.”

Maloney said that despite difficulty in changing the rules, student government will continue to work toward passing more lenient ones.

“Moving forward, the SGA will look to continue to look for policy changes in the best interest of the student body,” he said.

“While we respect the administration for their opinion to monitor and create our campus environment, we urge them to reconsider this approach, and deliver us an environment that represents the real world.”

Woo said a less radical set of rules was proposed Jan. 13, but any action on them will have to wait.

“Wescott wanted evidence from other schools to compare with their policies,” Woo said.

Those rules would remove current glass bottle restrictions, increase tolerated alcohol amounts and allow non-residents to drink on campus as long as they are 21.