ASUAF Recap: December 8, 2013

Kaz Alvarez/Sun Star Reporter
Dec. 10, 2013

Senators present
Matthew Carrick, Brix Hahn, Tayesia Nick, Shane Poindexter, Cordero Reid, Ashley Strauch and Daniel Strigle

Senators absent
Eli Barry-Garland, Sarah Walker and Lida Zakurdaew

Officers present
Michael Mancill

Officers absent
Ayla O’Scannell

Directors  present
Sam Allen and Michael Magnan

Guests
Brad Bishop and Jennifer Chambers

Cautionary advice on spending
Chambers expressed her concern with the amount of funding spent on clubs outside of the $15,000 provided by Club Council, especially in regards to large sums being set aside to launch new clubs. She compared the average $160 received by each establish club from Club Council to the $800 that has been written into a bill for the UAF Fencing Club. “I just want to point out that the amount of money is vastly different,” Chambers said. “I’m not saying don’t do it, but think about it very carefully.”

Representing Residence Life
Bishop expressed his support of Zakurdaew’s efforts to reestablish Residence Hall Associations.

Club Council review
Mancill is intending to work on changing the club funding process in the bylaws. One change may include a minimum cap of $75 for each club. Strauch yielded time to Chambers to discuss the topic. Chambers suggested that a separate fund be created for clubs starting up after club council disbursements. “It’s my opinion that the system we have works well now. What we see is that if they have a project they are working on, they are receiving additional funds as opposed to operational budget requests,” Mancill said. “When a club does want start up funds, our senate projects fund is good for that. I think it is important that all of our funds go back to the students while the club funding should go to student clubs.”  Mancill suggested that student clubs continue to come forward with their projects and ideas.

Student Affairs Committee
The committee discussed “SB 181-016 Purchase of Equipment for UAF Fencing Club.” Committed members said that $1,200 amount request was reasonable but  but will consult other senators prior to discharging the bill.

Special Orders
Election results were released but issues with the compiling of write-in votes and their corresponding internet votes have delayed their finalization. Carrick, Strauch, Zakurdaew, McKinley Zakurdaew and Jordyn Houlton will receive  senate seats. The winning write in candidates require additional consideration and will be released at the next meeting.

SB 181-015 Juneau Advocacy Trip Funding
Strigle opened discussion for the bill and Hahn pointed out that she not only sponsored the bill but would be benefiting from its approval and she will be abstaining. Carrick expressed his support of the bill to authorize the use of $4,300 from the ASUAF travel fund by Juneau Advocacy Trip delegates. The bill was put to a vote and was approved 7-0-2. Hahn and Barry-Garland abstained.

SB 181-016 Purchase of Equipment for UAF Fencing Club
Poindexter and Strauch sponsored the bill to provide funding for the purchase of fencing equipment so that the UAF Fencing Club can host USA Fencing sanctioned tournaments in Alaska. The bill would take $1200 from the Senate Projects fund. Strigle moved the bill to the Public Relations committee for consideration.

SB 181-017 Increasing student representation and Senate efficacy through ex officio representatives
Carrick, Zakurdaew, Strauch and Barry-Garland sponsored this bill to grant speaking rights to the Student Regent and ASUAF Office Manager during senate meetings. Individuals filling these two positions hold a great deal of knowledge that these senators feel are needed at meetings. The bill has no fiscal impact. Strigle  moved the bill to the Internal Affairs Committee for consideration.

SB 181-018 Student Travel Funding
Strauch and Barry-Garland sponsored SB 181-018 to finalize the distribution of $15,000 provided by the ASUAF Student Travel Fund to students and clubs. After first reading, the bill was moved Executive Committee for consideration.

SB 181-019 Funding for Public Gaming 
Strigle sponsored this bill to provide start up funds totaling $300 from Senate Projects to the UAF Wargamers Society. The funds would be used to purchase materials for model war games that would be available for public gaming. The bill was moved to the Public Relations Committee for consideration.

SR 181-001 Reformation of Residence Life Policies and Practices
The resolution was written by Strauch, Hahn, Reid, Barry-Garland and Strigle to catalyze system-wide improvements within UAF’s Department of Residence Life. Strigle opened the floor for discussion. Strauch emphasized that positive and negative testimonies from students are still needed. “This is an incredibly huge thing for ASUAF to do,” Strauch said. “This is a way to show that we are involved and care about student issues.”

Strigle yielded speaking time to Bishop. “I think that doing something and standing up for what you believe is right is excellent,” Bishop said. “Make it about making change and making it a better place.” Bishop encouraged senators to remember that there are students involved with Residence Life who have experienced negative consequences as a result of bad publicity. He also wanted senators to do what they can to keep Residence Life involved in the process that will follow this resolution. Strauch clarified that they will have no power in any investigative process following the approval of the resolution.

The resolution was put to a vote and was approved 8-0-1. Lida Zakurdaew abstained to maintain objectivity in her efforts to reestablish RHAs.

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