The Student Government Association chambers were packed on Thursday when 10 bills hit the floor for presentation, from fan expo to campus beautification to championship rings.
SGA also announced that its new constitution passed after two weeks of voting. This added two new positions, a transfer representative and an at-large representative; in addition, all of the housing representatives were consolidated into one residence life representative.
The new constitution also allows SGA to create bills on the floor with audience assistance and has moved the impeachment process more into the hands of the advisers, according to SGA’s March 28 email sent out to all students.
“The constitution has been something that SGA has been working on for nearly two years,” said SGA Secretary Alison Baron. “It started last year with overall cleaning up and making sure what we have in there is consistent. This year we did add a couple of new positions. This means that more people will have the opportunity to be in SGA.”
Baron said she’s happy to see it passed, and she isn’t the only one.
“I’m happy that the constitution has finally been passed,” said SGA President Alyssa Hutchinson. “I think it represents the hard work of SGA as a whole and it also helps represent a better population of students because we’re bringing in the transfer representative and narrowing down that we don’t need two or three residence life when there’s already RAs. It’s also bringing in a system to keep the people in SGA accountable when they don’t do the things they’re supposed to do.”
SGA elections are Monday and Tuesday; students will have the opportunity to vote via email for SGA representatives for the 2019-2020 academic year. The new transfer representative position is open.
“Please vote,” Hutchinson said. “It will be sent out. Keep your eyes peeled. But also, there’s still a lot of available positions, so if you’re interested about them please email SGA.”
SGA passed eight of the 10 bills presented at the meeting.
The bills that we passed were:
-The Dallas Fan Expo bill presented by junior criminal justice major Elijah Meyer, which will pay for students’ transportation, food, and drinks for the trip to the expo.
-The Women’s Soccer 2018 Conference Championship Ring Fund bill presented by Representative at Large (Athletics) Luis Santillan, which will pay for half the cost of the women’s soccer teams’ SAC Championship rings.
-The InBody Analysis Bill presented by Baron, which will get the Morton Fitness Center an InBody 270 Body Composition Analyzer.
-The ASC and SGA Finals Care Package Spring 2019 bill presented by Baron, which will provide students with finals care packages.
-The Community Service bill for summer and fall 2019 presented by Baron, which will provide registered student organizations the opportunity to compete for money prizes with their community service hours.
-The Easter Goodie Bags bill presented by SGA International Student Representative Finn Le, which will provide 30 international students with bags filled with grocery items to assist them over Easter break when campus dining is closed.
-The Easter Lilies Beautification Project bill presented by SGA Vice President Lynzie Moore, which will place Easter lilies around the campus leading up to Easter break.
-The DVD Player bill presented by SGA Freshmen Representative Lexi Barlow, which will place a DVD player and HDMI cable in all three Stella Russell Hall lobbies.
The Women’s Soccer 2018 Conference Championship Ring Fund bill brought several women’s soccer team members to the meeting to support the bill.
“We’re just really excited about winning the championship, but it’s super disappointing whenever you find out that you have to scavenge and do a bunch of extra work to get money for rings that you just earned,” said Katherine Smith, a junior business major and forward on the team. “We’d really appreciate it if you could help us with our fund, we’re really close.”
The soccer team had already raised more than half of the $3,000 since their win at the end of October 2018, said Smith.
SGA took a paper vote, with Moore abstaining because she is on team. SGA approved the bill, but it also needs Dr. Dennis Hall’s approval, Hutchinson said.
Another bill that created debated was the InBody Analysis bill, since it is a $6,500 commitment.
“I think the issue is there’s this one thing that’s over $6,000 and requires upkeep, while there’s a scale that could potentially do the same, just not as accurately,” Hutchinson said.
Hutchinson brought up this point because no one seemed opposed to the actual equipment, but rather the pricing.
“I’m completely for all the health benefits it could bring. I just don’t feel comfortable spending the money without seeing a lot of hard evidence,” said Lukian Sheremeta, SGA representative at large.
SGA eventually decided to pass it at the end of the meeting, after more than 20 minutes of debate.
SGA also tabled a Water Games Bill and a Stella Kitchen Bill, which will be discussed at the next general business meeting.
SGA’s next general business meeting will April 18 at 3 p.m. in the SGA Chambers in Sid W. Richardson Center.