SGA fails to elect commuter senators for open seats

Kevin Squires, Assistant News Editor
February 13, 2014
Filed under News

Motion tabled after one candidate lacked qualifications

The Slippery Rock University Student Government Association (SGA) motioned to open elections for the two seats currently open for commuter senators during their senate meeting Monday.  The motion was tabled but is expected to be untabled at the next senate meeting.

The tabling transpired after elections were opened when all candidates for the position were asked to step forward, bringing forward three students. It was discovered that one of the candidates, Wayne Miller-Douglass had not previously attended a senate meeting.

“Within our rules you have to attend one meeting before being elected,” SGA President Buddy Clements explained.

“This is my fault. I advertised for the position, I told Wayne to apply,” Vice President of Campus Outreach Anthony Plumberg said, adding that he felt it only fair he should have the chance to run.  Plumberg also stated that “[the positions have] been advertised since before the beginning of the semester.”

One of applicants applying to be commuter senator, Katie Hill, said, “I’m really sad that I will not be on senate for another two weeks if I even get elected because now it’s been like a month that I’ve wanted to be elected and I feel like I could be doing great things helping  you and I’m still sitting here [in the audience].”

Chris Ransom was elected as Rhodes Hall Senator.

A constitutional change was also motioned and automatically tabled which would remove voting rights from the non-student senate and cooperative activity members currently holding them. An open forum will be held next Monday at 8:45 p.m. in the theater of the Robert M. Smith Student Center to discuss the changes before a vote can take place.

The changes would result in two non-voting representatives on the senate appointed by the Slippery Rock University chapter of the Association of Pa. State College and University Faculties (APSCUF) and four faculty members, two of whom shall be elected each year by the faculty and each of whom shall serve a two year term as a non-voting member and one non-voting member appointed by the SRU President from the Division of Finance and Administration who will serve a two year term on the Board of Cooperative Activities.

SRU Interim Vice President of Student Affairs Robert Watson presented to the senate on the dismissal of the current student insurance program.

“As a result of the number of the changes that have occurred through the Affordable Care Act, the vendors which have traditionally supplied options for the student insurance program are no longer interested in providing them so we will no longer be offering to students the same student insurance program at the conclusion of this spring semester,” Watson explained, “we are not the only institution of concern so to speak but all 14 [Pa. state schools] are in the same boat as well.”

The numbers are still being tabulated but Watson believes the number of students to be under 200. “This is not a major issue if you look at the number of students who seek this insurance program for the Health Center,” Watson said. However, he noted that “this is an issue of concern, especially to those who rely on this type of service.”

The SRU Student Veterans of America Group was reactivated as an organization on campus and the senate voted to approve the Board of Cooperative Activities actions from last Thursday. Among the actions was the approval of Student Conference Grant awards for a total of $1,885 out of the Student Conference Grant budget to the Harbor, Sport Management Alliance (SMA), Pi Sigma Alpha, and Model UN. Mark Turnley was also approved as the auditing firm for the 2013-2014 fiscal year at a cost of $9,000 and first-time funding requests for the German Club and Sport Management Alliance, and new initiative requests from Pi Sigma Alpha and the American Sign Language Club for $255 and $500, respectively, were approved.

Cody Moody was awarded the “liter” of the week for his effort in chairing the vending committee. After naming the “liter” of the week, President Clements asked, “Has anyone seen Pepe le Plank?” Senator Alex Merida admitted to possession of the plank, stating that he was sitting on his dresser. The next senate meeting will be Monday Feb. 24 in the theater of the Robert M. Smith Student Center.

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