Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Sept. 22, Student Government Association meeting

I have a night class that meets every Wednesday at 4 p.m. That has stopped me from attending Student Government Association meetings this semester. Wednesday, Sept. 22, I did not have to attend class and decided to head to the State Room and see what the SGA was up to.

For a little background, I have attended Concord since the 2004-2005 school year. Yeah, I know. Crazy. I'm a seventh-year student. I was a member of Concord's newspaper staff, The Concordian, from 2004-2008 (with one extra semester in 2009). I held several positions on the staff, ultimately becoming Editor-in-Chief. During those four years on the newspaper staff, I regularly covered the SGA. After leaving the newspaper staff, I continued to cover the SGA in my blog. To see some examples of that, click here, click here, click here, & click here.

One thing I was very interested in was seeing Matt Belcher as SGA President. I've seen him develop in the SGA, starting with that whole Interim-VP deal a few years back, then becoming Business Manager, and then ultimately being elected President. It was cool to see him in charge. Also, it was cool to see Dustin Blankenship back in the SGA. He had been absent for a few years before running for Vice President last semester and winning.

I sat in the meeting and sent out several tweets (http://twitter.com/chris_slater). I'll post those below, with some form of commentary at the end.

* * *

Sitting in the State Room, waiting for the Student Government Association meeting to begin. We'll see how this goes...

Last year, CU library used just under 500,000 sheets of paper, according to library director Dr. Stephen Rowe.

Discussion of possibly instituting a small charge to print. Rowe said he would not implement a change w/o SGA input.

Today is when organizational budgets get revealed. Should be a fun SGA meeting.

Safety committee discussed lighting on campus. That's about all this committee has ever discussed.

I'm not sure who a lot of the people in the room are. Several new SGA members. There are still several I do recognize.

Discussing whether or not non-voting SGA members can co-chair a committee by himself, or whether a voting co-chair needs to be added.

Not sure why that's an issue. I'm going to give that some thought...

People still aren't sure how to properly use a "point of information." Maybe one day... #robertsrulesoforder

"We had a very successful budget meeting last Monday night." - Adam Pauley, SGA Business Manager

"I've held several positions in SGA." I don't know why people use that as a qualification - what if you did poorly in all those positions?

Discussing tailgating at the Homecoming game. It used to be allowed & not a big deal, but was banned several years ago.

Tailgating was banned for a couple years & has now been back on a limited basis for a few years.

Did Concord go trayless in the cafeteria? When did that happen? Why hasn't the newspaper covered it?

I like how the SGA discusses stuff during the meeting that should be brought up in committees.

"Going green" is a joke & nothing more than a buzz word. Conservation should be more than just a fad.

That 2-week appointment deal everybody thought was a great idea a couple years ago has come back to bite them...

... The SGA is voting to suspend that bylaw for a week. I still don't understand why they thought it was such a good idea 2 years ago.

I wish there were more informed voters in the SGA. Just changing an amendment on a whim because somebody suggested it. Not smart.

A commuter senator left to become a justice. New c.s. candidate cannot make interview time....


President is torn b/c bylaws state he has to interview all candidates & must fill a vacancy within 2 weeks...

Discussing which bylaw to suspend - that he must interview all candidates or the time limit.

President Belcher wants to suspend the 2-week time limit. Senator Kiwa Nadas is main proponent of suspending interview process.

Motion to suspend interview aspect failed. Motion to suspend 2-week timeline is in discussion.

Motion to suspend the 2-week time limit bylaw for one week passed.

My first & likely last SGA meeting of the semester is over. I'm not missing anything...


* * *

There are the tweets from the meeting. Recent Concord graduate Mike Mann must have seen my tweets, as he sent the following tweet shortly after the meeting ended - "I will never miss the horrible cliques or messy way the concord sga was ran."

A couple thoughts:

I'm not sure about why their is the thought that the committees need to have a voting member as chair/co-chair. Committees do all of their work outside of the meeting and only provide a report during the actual meeting, when voting is necessary. If anybody has an answer, that would be greatly appreciated. I don't know if I'm over-thinking it or maybe under-thinking it. I don't know if this makes perfect sense or no sense.

The SGA ran into a bylaw snafu at the meeting, as two bylaws got in the way of each other and one had to be suspended. The SGA President has to appoint somebody to fill a vacancy after two weeks. The SGA President also has to interview every applicant. The SGA President couldn't get an interview scheduled with a candidate before the two-week period was up. So, something had to be suspended there.

For these two bylaws, you can look back to the term of former SGA President Wes Prince. He left a position vacant for most of a semester and also gave positions to people without interviewing them. Neither one of those things went over well.

I'm not sure who this intersection of bylaws should fall on. I guess the SGA Affairs committee. I believe they handle constitution and bylaw issues. That committee should look into a way that the SGA can have both of those bylaws without having to suspend either one again. Perhaps something like a line saying that if an interview cannot be scheduled within the two-week period that their application is rescinded.

The SGA budget was announced during the meeting. All student groups get their money from the SGA, who gets its money from student fees. That's why it's important to keep up with the SGA. All Concord students give them somewhere in the neighborhood of $20.

Nineteen groups/organizations requested $25,091.21 and $13,905.13 was given out. Phi Alpha Delta was originally given a full allocation of $1,263.50 but it was taken away after they did not meet requirements.

Allocations are below:

Roth Walk/Run requested $1,198.00 and received a zero allocation.
Banned Book Week requested $995.00 and received $555.00.
Self Defense requested $2,500.00 and received a full allocation.
Eco Club requested $300.00 and received a full allocation.
History Club requested $130.81 and received a full allocation.
Circle K requested $600.00 and received a full allocation.
Alpha Sigma Tau requested $553.00 and received a full allocation.
Elite Dance requested $1,116.00 and received $816.00.
CU United requested $1,200.00 and received a full allocation.
Film Society requested $1,000.00 and received a full allocation.
Pi Kappa Phi requested $2,088.58 and received $1,500.00.
Alpha Sigma Alpha requested $544.32 and received a full allocation.
Student Activities Committee requested $566.00 and received a zero allocation.
Cu Serve requested $1,535.60 and received $1,055.60.
Student Support Services requested $8,000.00 and received $2,000.00.
Baptist Campus Ministries requested $300.40 and received a full allocation.
Sign Room requested $500.00 and received a full allocation.
Game room requested $700.00 and received a full allocation.

The budgets were determined by the Budgetary committee, which was led by Business Manager Adam Pauley and consisted of: John Fair, Josh Hannah, Julie Meikle, Kiwa Nadas, Jason Sines, Spencer Stevens, and Ginny V.

Also, as a final note, it was announced that Board of Governors representative Josh Lawson was appointed chair of the Higher Education Policy Commission State Advisory Council of Students. That's a pretty big deal. Hopefully you'll read something about it in The Concordian in the next coming weeks.

* * *

That's all for now. Like, probably literally all for now. If another week of my night class is canceled at some point this semester I might stop back and sit through another meeting. If not, hopefully there will be increased SGA coverage in The Concordian. They're doing a decent job of it so far.

Comments, criticism, etc... is welcome. Anonymous comments are allowed. Keep them semi-relevant and mildly profanity-free.

5 comments:

  1. That was brought up. I believe the Business Manager said that they were going to give the Roth Walk its money during the Spring budgetary instead of this one.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yes, because the Roth Walk takes place next semester and they don't need the money until then.

    ReplyDelete
  3. As for the committee co-chairs, Chris, the senate wishes to have a voting chair of all committees from within the senate. The Ethics committee discussed this on Monday and they believe that if committees are of the senate, they should be at least co-chaired by the senate. My original response to this was that we had only one extra application (two people applied for one committee chairmanship). Other than that, we had to fill the committee chairs. I feel we did this with competent people, but I am willing to work with the senate on this if they so want it. I agree with Spencer that it is a mistake to completely remove executives and justices from chairing committees, but perhaps it won't be such a bad idea to get a voting co-chair.

    As for application, I think it could serve as a good way for younger members to gain experience and dive into a smaller leadership role. In this way, we would be preparing the next group of SGA leaders. At least that is what I gathered from the ethics committee.

    I feel it is important for the Vice President to work with the senate on this. As the only voting member of the executive, I hold a quasi-dual role in the SGA. I administrate the committees so that they can run efficiently and effectively. It is my hope that seeing this recommendation through will further that very thought.

    On an unrelated note, Chris, thanks for the blurb about the excitement to see me back in SGA. I have enjoyed taking on the role of Vice President and I'm really glad to be back. Hopefully you'll be able to join us again really soon!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Ginny,

    Thanks for the clarification.

    Dustin,

    I see your point on the committee co-chair deal. I just don't see how necessary it is. The committees have been doing well without having to have a voting member as a co-chair. The only real problem with committees is attendance, and making this change won't fix that.

    And, yeah, if I have any more Wednesdays at 4 p.m. open, I'll definitely be there.

    ReplyDelete