Cycling club threatened after beer bottle found in van
Published: Wednesday, October 17, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 21:10
UVM’s Cycling club may need to shift into high gear after two unrelated incidents arose two weeks before a national biking competition.
An empty beer bottle was found in a van the club drove to a race Sept. 21, and reported to SGA.
SGA made the decision not to sanction the club at their meeting Oct. 9 and to instead wait to see whether or not the Center for Student Ethics and Standards (CSES) finds club members in violation of UVM’s alcohol policy.
“We should wait for CSES to make a decision before we make a decision that we have absolutely zero information about,” SGA Sen. Alex Edelman said.
President Connor Daley disagreed with the senate’s decision, saying they were not following policy.
“Having the beer bottle in their van is against SGA’s code of conduct and is in clear violation of University policy,” Daley said.
Some senators like Edelman were pointing out moral implications, Daley said.
Some senators said that since ‘everyone does it,’ SGA does not have the right to sanction a club for an empty beer bottle.
Daley disagreed and said SGA cannot pick and choose the policies they follow.
“Just because we don’t like a policy doesn’t mean we change it first,” he said. “If a policy is bad, we follow it and then make necessary changes after.”
Cycling club Vice President Jake Warshaw said the empty beer bottle did not belong to any of the club’s members.
“We honestly don’t have any information on it,” he said. “We’re pretty surprised because no one on our team drinks — we’re very intense about racing.”
There could be other explanations for the empty bottle, Co-president of Cycling club Ben Civiletti said.
“SGA say they know it was cycling because we were the last team to use the van,” Civeletti stated in an email. “However, keys to vans are given out days in advance before they are used in some cases, meaning that others could have used the van after the cycling team returned it, but before their allotted time.”
Since the bill to sanction the club was not passed, the decision is currently in the hands of CSES.
CSES Director Kim Martin said a group case like this one is similar to what typically happens to individuals who are thought to have violated the alcohol policy.
“Typically the communication will happen with the leaders of the club and they will deal with the individual at fault, if there is one,” Martin said.
But trouble didn’t end there.
Daley vetoed a separate finance bill allocating $4,200 to the Cycling club, which the members asked for to help pay for their trip to nationals in New Mexico.
To participate in the Collegiate Mountain Biking Nationals on Oct. 19, a team must have at least 16 qualified members, Warshaw said.
Warshaw estimated that the team would have to come up with three to four times the amount of money they currently have to pay for travel and lodging expenses.
Daley said he vetoed the bill because the club had more than enough money in their account.
“They have $8,000 in surplus from last semester, and we like clubs to be even at the end of the year because when there is a surplus, it could have been used to fund other clubs,” he said.
The Cycling club and SGA came to an agreement to give $50,000 to the club for the year, $2,000 less than last year, if they agreed not to ask for extra funding for nationals, Daley said. They asked for more money anyway.
Daley said his decision to veto the club’s allocated funds had nothing to do with the beer bottle incident.
Contributing: Devin Karambelas, Assistant News Editor