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The Daily Tar Heel

2 Announce ASG President Candidacy

David Chesley, a junior at Western Carolina University, and current ASG President Andrew Payne, a senior at N.C. State University, were nominated for president during the monthly ASG meeting, which was held at UNC-Pembroke.

Chesley, who is currently ASG vice president for legislative affairs, said he would not comment on his candidacy. UNC-P Student Body President Veronica Hatton is running for ASG vice president on Chesley's ticket.

Payne said he is running for president again to continue working on issues vital to student interests, such as additional funding for need-based aid. "I think we've made so much progress this past year," he said. "I don't want the momentum to die."

Payne said he wants to increase the budget of the financially strapped organization by seeking out grants.

Payne said he also wanted to continue Students' Day at the Capitol and to prevent UNC-system schools from raising undergraduate tuition.

The current tuition policy, which the Board of Governors plans to review at its April meeting, allows individual system schools to request tuition increases under "extraordinary circumstances."

Payne's running mate is Sonja Blanks, Fayetteville State University student body president. ASG delegates will elect the next president April 21.

Current ASG vice president Liz Gardner, who ran for president against Payne last fall, said she would not seek the position of president because she thought it was beneficial for the organization to have a president serve for two terms in a row. Gardner also said she would not make another bid for the vice president post because it was important to have student leadership from a historically black university in the organization.

At the meeting, the delegates also reviewed survey responses concerning Students' Day at the Capitol, when students from across the state gathered in Raleigh on Feb. 20 to discuss issues with state legislators such as an increase in need-based financial aid and a student vote on the Board of Governors.

Chesley, who helped organize the event along with Payne and others, said the day was positive for the most part, but there were several things that could be done to improve it. Chesley said the rally, which was dominated by speakers, should be tweaked. "I think so many speakers, the continuing motion of going up and back, didn't work out that well."

Chesley also said that the rally also should feature fewer "big-name speakers" and that the speakers present should tailor their message to students.

UNC-Chapel Hill Student Body President-elect Justin Young also attended his first ASG meeting. Young, who will have an ASG seat after taking office, spent part of the time getting to know student body presidents. "It's nice to find out what's going on at other universities and to go see other campuses."

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