GUSA Roundup: Changing of the guard
At yesterday’s meeting of the Georgetown University Student Association Senate, the most venerable senators approved the third member of the
IRC Triumvirate Election Commission, the new chair of the Finance and Appropriations committee, and discussed the future of the GUSA Fund. And there were some long speeches read directly to Vox on unrelated topics, but we’ll save those for another time.
Election Commissioner Adam Giansiracusa (SFS ’12) presented his replacement, who was vetted by the executive and approved by the senate yesterday. Pavan Rajgopal (SFS ’15) was selected because of his basic competency as a person, according to Giansiracusa. Rajgopal was approved by the senate with the expectation (they even asked him about this) that he will serve until he graduates (or is removed by the senate for disqualifying a candidate for illegitimate reasons an hour before the election, as Speaker Adam Talbot (COL ’12) reminded him).
In response to a question about punishing candidates for violations, Rajgopal said that he would be comfortable with it, and he would rather be proactive in preventing violations.
It was also mentioned that Rajgopal is a member of the IRC, like the other two current members of the EC and was outgoing chair AG. “We’ll not draw too much attention to that now,” Talbot added.
Since two members, including the chair, of the Finance and Appropriations committee moved to the executive, the senate approved Shiela Walsh (COL ’14), the first female finapp member, as chair and then appointed Robert Shepard (COL ’15) and Laura Kresse (SFS ’12) to the committee.
High on Walsh’s agenda is reshaping the GUSA fund to better recognize how it functions currently. Walsh said that, with both SAFE reform and advisory reform wrapping up, she would like to institute some reforms to help its remain a permanent institution.
Talbot added that although the GUSA fund’s original purpose of coercing other boards into reform is no longer relevant, the GUSA fund’s ability to “grant” GUSA’s access to benefits to organizations makes it as necessary as ever (he said, possibly alluding to the next great funding debate that needs to take place).
On the GUSA fund, the senate voted to pass this week’s GUSA fund package on the condition that the fund give the senate more information on their thought process this week. According to Ways and Means Chair Nate Tisa (SFS ’14), the GUSA fund didn’t follow their normal format while taking minutes this week, and the thought process behind their decisions is a little hazy. Although Tisa didn’t want to micromanage, he said having detailed minutes about funding decisions is seminal for accountability and transparency.
And finally, we have our Talbotism of the week. When an incessant buzzing noise started to irritate (and distract) the senators, Speaker Talbot thought of a solution worthy of Versailles.
“It is the opinion of the chair that we’re going to have to suck it up.”