Approximately 200 supporters of the College of Santa Fe gathered in front of the Roundhouse today including Santa Fe Mayor David Coss, House Representative Lucky Varela, Senator Peter Wirth, Senator Dede Feldman, House Representative Brian Eglof and Santa Fe Community College board member Linda Siegle.

UPDATE: Students, staff, faculty and supporters will return to the Roundhouse at 5 pm for a camp out. SFR will be on the scene all night.

The College of Santa Fe community gathered to try to force the Senate Finance Committee to hold a hearing on House Bill 577. The bill, which passed through the House Finance Committee, House Education Committee, a vote on the full House floor as well as the Senate Education Committee, where it was passed unanimously, has been held up for nearly two weeks in the Senate Finance Committee. Students, as well as Mayor Coss, expressed concern that the hearing would not be held but hoped that the protest would convince the Senate to bypass the committee and force the bill to a vote on the Senate floor.

After the protest students gathered at the Governor's office to sign a petition and in hopes of finding the Governor, who called the Mayor and SFCC's Linda Siegle into meeting during the protest.

Several students also gathered outside the office of Senator John Smith, Senate Finance Committee Chair, though security was called and the students chased off.

At 11:30 the Senate convened with no immediate plans to hear House Bill 577.

Images after the jump.