GUSA Roundup: Have you seen this bill?

At Sunday’s meeting, GUSA established that this year’s presidential elections would be accompanied by a debate between all the candidates. God know what the actual elections will look like, though—Senators lost the bill they passed last year setting down the terms for this year’s election. They also approved some members for the GUSA Fund’s board and debated rescheduling this week’s Funding Reform Town Hall around students’ TV watching schedules. Here’s the wrap:

Election Season: In his executive briefing to the Senate, Calen Angert (MSB ’11) announced that he and his vice president, Jason Kluger (MSB ’11), would be running again for president and vice-president respectively. Angert said he and Kluger had discussed the option and decided that “there are a lot of things we still can get done.” (See Molly Redden’s post to read about the agenda Angert and Kluger are running on.)

But if the conclusion of this section of the meeting was any indication of how smoothly elections will go this year, after the catastrophe that was the 2009 elections, the outlook is not good. Our Senators, it turns out, could not find the bill they passed last year that dictate how this year’s elections would be held.

The bill, passed just before last year’s elections, established that this year’s elections would be held as an instant runoff. The Senators could find absolutely no trace of the bill, even after one GUSA senator went back to his house to search for it. So, although several vowed they had seen it, the Senate had no choice but to forget about the Loch Ness Election Bill and address other issues.

The GUSA Senate also passed a bill establishing a debate between all the candidates for the GUSA presidency. It was introduced by Speaker Adam Talbot (COL ’12) with the intention of engendering more “interactive” elections. The debate will be moderated by members of campus media groups.

The GUSA Fund: GUSA President Calen Angert presented three of the five nominees for the board of the GUSA Fund at this week’s senate meeting. The first two candidates, Chris Butterfeild (MSB ’12) and Murphy Kate Delaney (COL ’13), were unanimously approved by both the Funding and Appropriations Committee and the GUSA general Senate in classic unanimous GUSA fashion.

The last candidate, Robert Benkert (COL ’12), was approved unanimously by the Financial and Appropriations Committee but failed to muster unanimous approval from the general Senate after Senator Chris Pigott (COL ’12) abstained, citing a conflict of interest and a desire that not every nomination be unanimous. Angert’s nominee for the chair of the GUSA Fund, junior Kate Petersen, was unavailable for the meeting. The last nominee, Yasin Yagubie, was also unavailable.

GUSA also voted to shift $26,000 from the GUSA’s General Fund to the GUSA Fund. The bill underwent some slight changes before the final vote, but in its finished form it contains a requirement that $9,000 be used to promote events and activities related to the arts, diversity, and civic engagement.

Funding Reform Town Hall: Speaker Talbot urged members of the Senate to attend this Wednesday’s town hall meeting on Funding Board reform, which will be held in Reiss 112 at 7 p.m. After some senators realized that this time conflicted with Georgetown basketball’s game against USF, several senators made an effort to change the date. However, they found that the only other available time slot was during the season premiere of Lost. Ultimately, the Senate decided to leave the date unchanged instead of attempting to schedule a town hall over an event that went head-to-head with Obama’s State of the Union—and won.

6 Comments on “GUSA Roundup: Have you seen this bill?

  1. Wow. You’re telling me that these morons—who 1. can’t keep track of the BS legislation they pass, 2. unanimously approve all the candidates who come before them, and 3. schedule town halls to conflict with basketball games—are going to be trusted with complete control over the Student Activity Fee? I’m sure this won’t be a disaster at all…

  2. 1. It was a reflection on last year’s process – not this year’s. As you know, all records are now kept on, so this would not be able to happen again. 2. Over 50 candidates applied to the 5 GUSA Fund positions. The executive did a good job in finding good candidates. 3. That’s why we’re live-streaming and archiving the video footage of the town hall. Hope that helps.

  3. Do you mean to suggest that the GUSA Senate may be entirely incompetent? WHAT IS THERE LEFT TO BELIEVE IN??

  4. As for your #3, the problem comes in with students presumably attending the basketball game over the town hall. I know that if I could make the town hall, I’d be there to listen and possibly share my thoughts. But I’m going to the basketball game instead. Thus, I will not be able to respond in context to anything brought up at the town hall. Archiving it is nice (I may watch it), but I figure the town hall is supposed to be a discussion of these proposals, but the sample size seems like it will be too small to get a good feel for what the campus wants.

  5. @ @Nick:

    The townhall is only one avenue to express your opinion. The full texts of the relevant proposals are all up on the website, along with some explanations (as well as archives of all meetings, votes, bills and pending legislation from this year and parts of others). The method allows members of the public to comment on bills (click on the speech bubble to the right of them) – so you can still comment and debate.

    Or you could contact your Senator, or the President/VP, or show up to any Senate meeting, to voice your opinion. While I agree the townhall is a great forum, it’s certainly not the only one. I’m sure if you have any good ideas, suggestions or improvements, Nick and others would be more than happy to listen.

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