ASG gives up control of RideShare

Claire Brown and Rebecca Olles

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Associated Student Government will no longer control its RideShare and Airport Services programs after the Senate voted Wednesday to transfer the program to Northwestern Student Holdings, a not-for-profit organization that develops and administers student-run companies.

Communication senior Louise Huterstein represented Northwestern Student Holdings at the meeting. She stressed the organization’s ability to maintain control and highlighted the management team’s capability of managing the service.

“We intend to create a Northwestern University airport service,” she said. “This will be the one stop shop for all NU services.”

Huterstein also discussed the organization’s plan to extend the shuttle program to include faculty and graduate students and add services for those who require airport transportation during non-holiday times.

“We developed a new operating model, and we took what ASG did and saw if we could make it efficient,” she said. “We are developing our marketing materials, and the Web site is almost near completion.”

Some ASG senators voiced concern about the lack of a contract with Northwestern Student Holdings to maintain the price at $10 and questioned whether handing over the service was ideal for students.

During the debate, McCormick sophomore Beau Becker said he was against the resolution.

“There’s no reason why we should pass this,” he said. “I think passing this bill is going against what ASG is all about. It prevents another student organization from stepping up and creating (its) own service.”

ASG Vice President Tommy Smithburg created ASG Airport Services last Winter Quarter and expressed his support for the handover.

“I look at this as my baby,” the Weinberg senior said. “I want this service to best serve the student body, and for me that’s NSH.”

After the legislation passed, ASG President Mike McGee said he thought giving over RideShare was the right decision because he said ASG would not have been able to continue running the program.

“There are some times when we can’t provide the best resources for students, and that’s why we approached NSH,” he said.,