Your Quick Recap: The March 1 Student Senate Meeting

Here’s the live-blog.

Senate approved a recommendation from the Organizations Committee to give the Graduate Women’s Organization a full charter, after much debate.

This recommendation came after the committee orginially recommended that Senate continue the organization’s temporary charter, citing several issues (most notably that the organization was limited to graduate students; because the GWO applied under Student Senate, they are required to be open to all students and not just graduate students).

However, Senate discovered that it could not continue a temporary charter. Under the Student Code of Conduct, once an organization’s charter status expires, Senate must take action by either granting the next level in the charter process or rejecting the charter (if they fail to take action, then technially the organization doesn’t exist). Because of this, Chair Bethanny Mackingtee requested an amendment to the committee’s original recommendation to make the recommendation a full charter.

Several members of the GWO spoke to Senate today in support of their organization. You can find what they said in the live-blog. Also included: representatives from Guitar Club.

Up for vote next week:

Robotics Club is up for a probationary charter. Vegetarians Taking Action and Relay for Life are up for temporary charters.

And finally, the Organizations Committee has rejected Guitar Club‘s application for a probationary charter. This particular item should see some debate next week, as the Guitar Club spoke to Senate today and seemingly garnered some support in the chamber.

The Membership Committee revised the Election Code. Those revisions aren’t final just yet (Senate has to approve).

What it changes:

  • The Membership Chair would no longer be required to take all the candidates on a tour of the Greek houses. This would not prohibit the Chair from doing so (and Membership Chair Katherine Ladner told Senate that she planned to do this in the upcoming election).
  • The committee added a definition of “mass email” (namely, an email sent from one of the SMU listservs).
  • The committee changed the wording of “double majors” to “multiple majors” as some people are triple majors.
  • The committee added a provision prohibiting campaigning by mass emails or have someone else with access to an SMU listserv to send a mass email on their behalf.
  • The committee added a provision that says that no campaigning can take place while a student is voting or within 25 feet of any polling places that Senate may choose to set up.
  • The Committee changes the name of the Campus Planning and Plant Operations to it’s new name the Office of Facilities Management and Sustainibility.
  • The committee added a dollar amount to stake signs ($2).

Look for changes to these revisions, particularly the polling place provision. Several senators tried to figure out a better solution (see live-blog).

The Membership Committee recommended Sen. Rachel Fox (Dedman II) as the new Finance Chair and Sen. Christian Genco (Lyle) as the new Finance Vice-Chair.

The Membership Committee recommended Alexis Goldberg as the new Organizations Chair and Sen. Alexa Dow (Dedman I) as the new Organizations Vice-Chair.

Senate approve last week’s funding requests from Anthropology Club ($760 out of $990) and Omega Psi Phi ($728 out of $728).

Up for vote next week:

The Dedman School of Law—Women in Law is requesting $1,000 to attend a conference in Los Angelos, California. Finance Committee recommends funding in full. This recommendation comes afer the FC originally recommending funding $0. They reconsidered the request after a complaint was filed.

SMU Democrats are requesting $660 for the Texas Young Democrats/Texas College Democrats Convention. FC recommends funding in full.

The International Relations Club is requesting $5,475 for the World Model United Nations in Singapore. FC recommends funding in full.

The Philosophy Club is requesting $$2,160 to bring in two guest speakers. FC recommends funding $1,080 because they are concerned that the group couldn’t attract the audiences. They recommend funding for one event to see how it goes before they fund another. The FC revisited this recommendation after a complaint was filed but made no changes to their recommendation.

Student Senate saw the introduction of four new bills:

  • A resolution establishing the Student Senate Endowment Committee
  • A resolution allowing probationary and temporary chartered student organizations access to Use of Campus Grounds form
  • A resolution declaring the importance of the Texas Equalization Grant to the SMU community
  • A resolution supporting the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered SMU students

Senate voted to see both the TEG and LGBT bills as old business.

Senate then passed them both (the TEG bill passed unanimously).

The TEG bill basically said that the students of SMU request that the Texas Legislature not make any cuts to the TEG unless absolutely necessary (the TX lege is facing a massive budget shortfall).

The LGBT bill said that Student Senate continues to support LGBT students. It also encourages senators to receive Allies training at the Women’s Center.

I’ll have more information on these two bills in tomorrow’s print  product.

Here are the meeting minutes:


About Meredith Shamburger

Meredith is a journalist working for the Longview News-Journal in Longview, Texas.
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