The vote by Sonoma State University students to assess themselves $150 each semester to pay for a new student center is being challenged by students and faculty who opposed the fee.
A freshman who led the campaign against the fee is calling for an investigation into whether the election was correctly conducted.
Anthony Gallino said the "No" campaign was given unequal and insufficient access to resources that were supposed to be apportioned equally to both sides under the university's election rules.
"Towards the end of the election, I realized how unfair the campaign practices were," Gallino said.
He said he was given "everything I asked for" to run the "No" campaign, but was not fully informed how much was available. Also, he said, other sources of campaign funding were not disclosed to him.
Student leaders who campaigned for the fee increase said the allegations are unfounded.
"It was a fair election, anything and everything the students who were leading the opposition requested was provided," said Bridgette Dussan, president of the Associated Students Inc.
"There were no requests which were denied in regards to funds and publicity towards the opposition side," she said.
Students approved the fee by 59 percent to 41 percent in an April referendum. That paved the way for the university's auxiliary organizations, which are funded by student and faculty purchases and fees, to move forward with the $65 million student center project.
The Academic Senate is to vote Thursday on a resolution calling on the state university system to conduct an investigation into the election.
"The senate has the responsibility to oversee that elections are run fairly and students are treated in a fair and even-handed manner," said SSU mathematics professor Sharon Cabaniss, who wrote the resolution.
"I felt it was my responsibility to say something," she said.
Campaign funding was provided by the Associated Students and the other auxiliary organizations. Gallino said he only received money from the Associated Students.
Erik Dickson, executive director of Associated Students, said that $4,000 was made available for the election, but the amount each campaign received wasn't yet available.
If he had known that Gallino was unclear about what was available in financial and administrative support, "I would have reached out to him more vigorously."
SSU President Ruben Armi?na said this week in an interview that the 41 percent achieved by the "No"campaign, though short of a victory, signaled a effective campaign.
"Forty-one percent is a very impressive vote," he said.
He suggested that some of the issues raised by Gallino — whose activism he also praised — were due to inexperience.
"That's the difference between a senior and a freshman," Armi?na said.