Two proposals for constitutional changes were tabled at Friday’s meeting as a result of what Senate Treasurer Justin LaBerge called unpreparedness.
LaBerge said Senate members didn’t properly review the proposals, and to pass them would be wrong.
“People are completely unaware of what’s going on, at some point somewhere, someone didn’t read something,” LaBerge said.
The proposals in question were for a constitutional change regarding the Senate’s accordance with the Maine State Right to Know Laws and a new constitution for the Honors Association.
USM student Jeremy Federman came to help finalize the Honors constitution, which he said the Senate received three weeks ago.
While the Senate maintained they failed to receive the complete constitution and thus couldn’t vote on it, Federman said they simply didn’t read it.
The Senate constitution changes were also tabled so that senators could have more time to review the material, which will clarify when executive sessions are legitimate and when they are not.
Both constitutional changes will be addressed and are scheduled for a vote at the next meeting.
Friday’s guest speakers were Karen Brown-Mohr, government regulatory and policy consultant, and Wayne Berzinis, owner of the Campus Bookstore.
Both speakers discussed an issue they have with the present USM student identification cards.
Berzinis said that the current relationship between the University and the card office is “ridiculous, and when an institution like USM does it’s own banking, they come up with absurd rates.”
Currently, the Maine legislation states that a public post-secondary institution may enter into an agreement with a financial institution, a credit union, or other credit card issuer to issue a debit card for use by students enrolled at the institution.
Brown-Mohr and Berzinis believe students should have the right to use their cards off-campus. At this point they can’t. Brown-Mohr said there will be a public hearing in March to discuss the issue.
WMTW donates cameras
Two studio cameras worth approximately $10,000 will be donated to USM’s G-TV television station at the end of this month. G-TV will now have broadcast quality despite spending only $425 of its $3,825 for audio equipment, and thanks to office supplies provided by the Senate to improve its facilities.
Senate library proposal withdrawn
Senate Secretary Steve Witek withdrew his proposal for $150 to begin buying books for a Senate library. The proposal, designed by Witek to create a more professional look for the Powers House, received criticism in the meeting as other senators believe the books to be ordered are already available through University Libraries.
Estimated amount of money left in the Senate account: $1,150.57.
Senate Chair Ryan Anderson
Senate Vice Chair David Casinelli
The next meeting for the Student Senate will be held at 9:30 a.m., Friday Feb. 16 in Room B of the Woodbury Campus Center, Portland.