The University of Northern Colorado Student Senate announced on its website today that preliminary results for the 2019 election are delayed. Results were originally scheduled to go live at 3 p.m. today.
The announcement details how a “number of grievances” have been filed during the election process and how the senate is “waiting for decisions from UNC’s Student Judiciary.”
According to the senate’s website, there is a week-long grievance period after the preliminary results are announced, which would last until 5 p.m. Friday, April 12. This is when the official results are announced. However, this recent announcement says “according to the UNC Elections Rules and Regulations, results are announced and certified only if no valid grievance has been filed.”
The Mirror staff will stay in contact with Election Commissioner Tammy Ortiz about the issue.
UPDATE 4/5 2:30 p.m. In an email to The Mirror from Ortiz, she said she is “independent from Student Judiciary and [has] no information or details [she] can release regarding grievances.”
UPDATE 4/9 7:30 p.m. According to Student Senate bylaws, no information can be released before each grievance has been addressed and determined to be a violation or not.
Student Senate Presidential candidate Michael Moss declined to comment.
The Mirror is still waiting on the response of Jordany Muhigirwa and Michaella Tancayo.
Fellow candidate Grant May did comment on the election delays.
“I filed no grievances towards any competitors campaigns. I believe in Laissez Faire regulatory practices.
The current student government and the election process is highly over-regulated and hangs the threat of grievances over the heads of candidates. I look forward to UNC stuco elections potentially being less rigid in the future.
Grievance information has been limited up to this point, should get some more clarity in the following weeks.” May said.
The Mirror also reached out to current Student Senate President Tim Hernandez for a comment.
“They are a student group that is legally not allowed to disperse any information relating to grievances until they have processed and filed all grievances during the election cycle. To do so would be a violation of Student Rights and FERPA, so they are only doing their jobs and following the due process of Election Code,” Hernandez said.
UPDATE 4/19 9:21 a.m. The Mirror became aware of a Facebook post on Student Body President candidate Grant May’s page with apparent updates about the UNC Student Judiciary’s verdicts on the election grievances.
In the post, May includes images from a document sent to him from the Student Judiciary, “reccomend[ing] disqualification from the current election” and “reccommend[ing] that [May] be unable to hold any Senate position for one calendar year.” The images also reiterate how student fees, or anything bought with student fees cannot be used for “campaign-related activity.”
In an email to The Mirror, Student Body President Tim Hernandez said the Senate cannot “disclose any information until we pass the weeklong grievance appeal period.” Hernandez also said any student who has a grievance against the Student Judiciary’s decisions have one week to appeal them.
“However, until this process sees itself through, there is nothing we can discuss without violating the rights of the candidates and the process of Student Judiciary,” Hernandez said in the email.
The Mirror has invited May and other Student Senate candidates to comment on this recent update.