Sen. Haley Palmeri’s Act No. 11 was passed during the Student Government Associations Nov. 16 meeting, creating an SGA Budget Committee to properly oversee expenditures. Members of the Budget Committee will establish a budget relative to the previous year’s success or failure and be comprised of SGA’s advisers, two members of the Senate, two members of Tribunal and two members of the Executive Council.
The creation of the Budget Committee comes in the wake of a slew of expenditure concerns this semester after it was reported that SGA was operating over their budget. This semester also saw the first time SGA has directly funded a student organization instead of the SOC, which typically handles student organization money.
Sen. Ashlyn Whitaker’s Act No. 12 also passed and will see the SGA recognize APSU’s annual blood drive as a major event to dedicate more resources to. The blood drive is set for Feb. 8-9 of 2017, but is awaiting confirmation.
Sen. Jordan Kent commented on how low turnout was for the most recent blood drive.
“As somebody who actually worked the blood drive last year, there was something like three people who showed up… We had very low participation…I think it is a pretty good idea [to make the blood drive a major event],” Kent said.
Sen. Dominic Critchlow’s Act No. 13 passed and will change the number of senators elected into office. Each college shall now have two representatives, each classification will now have three instead of five representatives. These changes will go into starting in the Spring 2017 election. The Reorganization Committee wrote the legislation in an attempt to give students better representation.
Resolution No. 12, also from Sen. Critchlow, passed to write a formal letter of recommendation to grant department chairs the ability to excuse university-approved absences. The resolution would address problems concerning students missing classes due to prior engagements such as job interviews or community service.
Act No. 10 was tabled until the next SGA meeting after a heated discussion regarding privacy of the SGA meetings. This legislation, from Sen. Sara Alexander, calls for SGA meetings to be recorded with a video camera and uploaded to the internet for public viewing in an effort to be more transparent as well as get more students involved in the SGA process.
SGA meetings are currently open to all students but very rarely see students attend. Some senators voiced concerns over their every word being recorded and publicly viewed without proper context or knowledge of how SGA operates. Other senators voiced ample support for the legislation as a better way to record meeting minutes.
Res. No 14 from Sen. Duane Kessler was also passed to write a formal letter of recommendation to the city council asking for an extension to the APSU school zone on College Street to cover the newly installed parking lots. Over the summer, APSU acquired numerous new areas on College Street from Jenkins & Wynne after their relocation to Trenton Road.
As the fall semester draws to a close, SGA has seen a large influx of new legislation to address the issue of senators possibly being removed from their positions for not writing any legislation. President Ryan Honea noted that most senators have now submitted legislation, but a few have now missed the deadline.
All of the new legislation presented during the meeting is as follows:
Res. No. 15, sponsored by Sen. Austin Street, would see lights installed at parking lot No. 2 at the corner of Forbes and Robb Avenue across from the Dunn Center.
Res. No. 16, from Sen. Frank Burns, calls for SGA to provide funding to the Nation Pan-Hellenic Council for their plots project, which would see the construction of monuments on APSU’s campus.
Res. No. 17, from Sen. Cameron Pena, calls for the establishing of a “Peay Cleanup” event in partnership with the Center for Service Learning and Community engagement to help keep APSU free of litter.
Res. No. 18, from Sen. Joseph Spear, calls for the installation of a blue emergency pole in Greek Village as the closest current one is on the other side of the rock wall in the middle of the parking lot.
Res. No. 19, from Sen. Haley Adkinson, asks for a letter of recommendation to be sent to the Housing Office to establish rules concerning the amount of time students can leave their finished clothes in the laundry room.
Res. No. 20, from Sen. Ella Weiss, asks for a letter of recommendation to be sent to President White and APSU’s chief of police to allow students to carry pepper spray on campus.
Res. No. 21, from Sen. Madison Hobson, asks for a letter of recommendation to be sent to the Athletic Department asking for student-only sections to be created in Fortera Stadium as well as the Dunn Center for sporting events.
Res. No. 22, also from Street, calls for a bike rack to be installed at the main entrance to Fortera Stadium.
SGA did not meet, Wednesday, Nov. 23, in recognition of Thanksgiving, and will hold their next meeting Wednesday. Nov. 30, in MUC 307.