By Brian T. Melvin
Arizona Daily Wildcat
February 23, 1998

Escort issue wrongly portrayed

To the Editor,

I am writing in response to the article "Davidson Scolds ASUA Officials (Feb. 20)". I would first like to point out a very large error on the behalf of the Wildcat and then I would like to respond to the issues raised in the article.

The Wildcat stated "Melvin also berated Sitt, a finance junior, for suggesting the ASUA Escort Service get rid of their single van and rent several others to save money and have a larger fleet." This statement does not correctly portray the proposal that Joseph Sitt had nor does it correctly state my objection to his position. Joseph Sitt suggested that the Escort Service is wasting money on the van that the service rents from the UA Motor Pool every week and felt that we should rent from the UA Motor Pool every week and felt that we should purchase another van instead of continuing to waste money on rental rates. I agree that renting a van is not the optimal situation however had Mr. Sitt spoken to me he would have know why it is that we do this.

Purchasing a 15-passenger van would cost nearly $30,000. All of that money would have to come out of our budget in one lump sum leaving very little money for us to operate for the year. I examined all of my options at the beginning of this year and determined that the Escort Service would be able to provide the highest level of service by renting a van and not making a $30,000 capital expense.

I would also like to say that Jason Hand flat out lied at the candidate forum when he stated that he had left messages on my voice mail trying to contact me. I check my voice mail at least once a day and never have I received a message from Jason Hand. Just a clarification, (Jason Hand take note) my number is 621-SAFE(7233).

My last comment is in response to Gilbert Davidson stating "I think they should have refrained from doing that...that is not something that ASUA officers elected or appointed should be involved in" referring to the questions that Sen. Summer Katzenbach and I asked at the forum. I believe that our questions were fair and necessary. A candidate forum is in fact the place to pose tough questions to the candidates about their knowledge of the position they are running for. The students need to know if the candidates really know the issues. Joseph Sitt, Jason Hand, and Michael Benveniste have shown that they do not know the issues and have not attempted to research them either.

Brian T. Melvin
Director, ASUA Escort Service



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