CFRC fee back on ballot in March after appeal

CFRC lodged an appeal after failing to win majority vote

The AMS will rerun the CFRC referendum in March.
Journal File Photo

After 52.7 per cent of students voted against establishing a mandatory fee for CFRC last week, the campus radio station lodged a successful appeal to have the referendum run again.

According to an AMS press release published Thursday night, CFRC lodged the appeal “due to a lack of clarity of the question” on the ballot.

CFRC was the only fee on the ballot that failed. Its question asked the student electorate, “Do you agree to a change in CFRC’s fee of $8.22 from individual opt out to mandatory collection for the next three years?”

“Many students believed that if the CFRC fee lost this referendum it would remain as an optional fee. This was not the case and was not communicated clearly,” the press release read.

“Due to a lack of communication between the AMS Elections team and CFRC, the CFRC Referendum question did not follow the expected question format and was unfairly biased against CFRC. The CEO ruled that due to the issues related to their question, CFRC will go up for referendum again during the March Trustee By-election.”

The CFRC question on the referendum ballot was phrased in the same format as the Food Bank and Golden Words questions, both of which succeeded.

In a statement to The Journal, CFRC President and Board of Directors Chair Dave Cunningham said the station is pleased that the AMS acknowledged the appeal.

“We are confident that, with a properly framed question, we will be successful in the March referendum,” Cunningham said.

“CFRC has been an important part of the Queen's community for almost 100 years. Through unique and innovative programming, including our increased emphasis on podcasting, we continue to be an important voice on campus and in the community.”

In an interview prior to Thursday’s announcement, however, The Journal asked Cunningham whether CFRC had considered putting the fee on the referendum ballot for opt-out status.

“I think the Board discussed both particular options,” he said. “We did have a mandatory fee before the Student Choice Initiative. The plan was to go back to the mandatory fee we had before the Student Choice Initiative, which was effectively struck down by court.”

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