UND Voter Bus Program CanceledA UND student voter program providing transportation for students to voting places has been determined to be illegal and in violation of the North Dakota Century Code.
A UND student voter program providing transportation for students to voting places has been determined to be illegal and in violation of the North Dakota Century Code.
The Code says "no person may pay another person for the expense of transportation to or from the polls."
The Code states that it is illegal for UND to finance the transportation of students to a polling place. Representative Earl Pomeroy was at the meet and greet event where afterward, students were encouraged to vote early and receive free transportation to the voting site in Grand Forks. The event with Pomeroy was put on by the College Democrats group, and not by Student Government.
The UND Student Government has offered vans to students to get to the early voting poling place at the Grand Forks County Office Building. Vans run every hour from 11 am to 5:30 pm.
Student Body Vice President Grant Hauschild says the University Democrat group independently chose to use the vans, which were available to anyone who wanted a ride.
UND Student Government coordinator Evan Andrist says the group was just trying to get students to vote.
"It's just sad. We're trying to make it easier for students to get out and vote. We want to inform our students about how to vote in North Dakota, and trying to do it with bipartisanship," Andrist said Thursday night.
Student Government allotted a certain portion of student fees to finance the program. Andrist says that invitations were sent out to numerous candidates to attend and then rides were offered to polling places so that students could cast their ballots early. Andrist says around 25 students voted early using the transportation program.
"It saddens me that the program has to go away but we don’t want to break the law," Andrist said.