Senators from the Fairfield University Student Association debated a bill aimed at the Executive Branch in the Lower Level of the Barone Campus Center on Jan. 30. They stopped to review the rules of debate multiple times as dean of students Will Johnson chatted with associate director of Office of Student Engagement Jeremy Kaler in the public gallery section of the General Senate Meeting.
“A Bill to Provide FUSA Senate Consistent and Transparent Information from the Executive Branch,” requires that a representative from every board of the executive branch attend every GSM.
Senators voiced their opinions during structured debate, with alternating one-minute for and against speeches. Sophomore Senator Ali Haidar sponsored the bill and spoke first in favor of it. He argued that the attendance of members of the executive branch would provide the senate the necessary information to do its job.
Next, Men’s Rowing teammate of Vice President Matthew Marshall ‘19, Senator Charles Cooper ‘19, spoke against the bill, contending that Senate already had the information they needed provided to them in Executive Cabinet meeting minutes which are posted to OrgSync. First-year Senators Alexander Vulcano and Jack Stalzer also spoke during structured debate.
Stalzer proposed an amendment to the bill that would only require one member of one executive board attend a GSM, with the boards switching from GSM to GSM.
Junior Senator Bradd Cyr, in objection to Stalzer’s argument that having members of every executive board speak at each meeting would make GSMs carry on too long, said, “We volunteer the time necessary to do that job.”
The language of the bill does not require that members of the executive branch boards speak at GSMs; it only specifies that they are required to attend.
The amendment was voted down with 12 senators opposed, five in favor and one abstention. The Senate then voted on the original bill to require a member of every board, which passed with 11 in favor, six opposed and one abstention. As of Feb. 5, President Danielle Rice ‘19 had not signed or vetoed the bill, and has six class days to do so or the bill will be enacted as per the FUSA Constitution.
The next item of business for the Senate was a resolution sponsored by Speaker of the Senate Noelle Guerrera ‘21, “A Resolution to Recognize Martin Luther King Jr. Day and Fairfield University’s Celebration of Activism at Fairfield University Event.” The bill was discussed during the MLK Convocation in the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts, and passed with 18 aye votes and zero nays.
The last item passed by the FUSA Senate on Jan. 30 was, “A Resolution to Congratulate the Senate Committee on Facilities, Technology, and Auxiliary Services’ Dining Initiatives in the Tully Dining Hall,” co-sponsored by Haidar and Guerrera. The resolution recognized the accomplishments of the committee of which Haidar is the chair.
The committee was able to get the Daniel & Grace Tully Dining Commons sandwich station to serve chicken cutlets and pepper jack cheese.
“One reason we should be congratulating ourselves is when The Mirror asks about what we have done,” said Haidar, indicating staff members of The Mirror in the gallery, “we can show them a resolution which will make us look more official.”
The Senate passed the resolution; only Senators Cooper and Robert George ‘19 voted against it.
The final item proposed did not reach the voting stage. This was “A Resolution to Signify FUSA’s Right to Free Expression,” also sponsored by Haidar. FUSA Senate declined to consider the bill with 14 votes in opposition and shouts directed at Haidar at the concept of discussing it.
The FUSA Senate moved to adjourn at 8:22 p.m., after nearly two hours, with senators mentioning to each other that it had been a productive meeting.