SG approves senators, judicial appointees, passes three bills

Natalie Logan

Three Student Government meetings took place on July 21. The Budget and Allocations Committee approved a travel request and a special request. The Government Oversight Committee approved two senators, an associate justice, and the 2014-2015 Elections Policies and Procedures. Senate confirmed these appointees, passed three bills, and postponed voting on another.

Photo by Natalie Logan
Photo by Natalie Logan

Emergency Budget and Allocations Committee Meeting

The B&A Committee listened to two requests: one travel request for Michael Rotella and one special request from the Student Leadership Advisory Board.

Rotella’s request was for $500 to attend the International Council for Shopping Centers Conference in Kissimmee this August. Rotella, who wants to go into real estate, says this conference is a very big deal for real estate brokers and that the University of North Florida was the only university not represented there last year.

Since B&A approved the request 2-1-0, this money will cover most of the $630 estimated cost of the trip. Rotella who is also chairman of the B&A Committee chose to abstain from voting on his own travel request.

Vice President of the Student Leadership Advisory Board James Flannagan and finance senior Jacob Carlson presented a request for $5,800 to bring motivational speaker Tim Augustine to campus.

They plan for Augustine to meet with Coggin College of Business clubs throughout the day and then have him speak at a large seminar for all UNF students in the evening.

B&A approved the request 3-0 and moved on to Senate.

Emergency Government Oversight Committee Meeting

Elections Commissioner True Rains presented the 2014-2015 Elections Policies and Procedures.


There are a few changes from last year’s policies and procedures. Candidates no longer have to come to forums, and it will be easier to announce their declaration of intent.

Additionally, students will be able to vote online or on their mobile devices starting in the fall. Rains said he tested the new system, and the software will be the same as the software at the on-campus polling stations.

The committee approved the document, and it will now go to Student Body President Joesph Turner for approval.


The GOC Meeting also included interviews for three SG candidates: public law and advertising sophomore Akash Brahmbhatt and construction management senior Shaneice Byrom for senate, and criminal justice and Spanish senior Katherine Sanchez for associate justice. All three were approved to move forward for Senate confirmation.

Senate Meeting

During Student Remarks, GOC Chair Katherine Savage said she will be resigning as of August 1. She said she loved the experience but won’t have time for the extra work in addition to her fall course load. She will continue as a senator.

In Turner’s report, he said veterans with a blue “V” on their Osprey1card will now receive a 10% discount at all on-campus food vendors.


In University and Student Affairs Chair Chase Baker’s report, he conducted a quiz on Robert’s Rules, the etiquette Senate uses while holding meetings. Of the 13 senators in the room, three answered the question correctly.

Three of four bills on the floor passed. The first was SB-2776, which revised the constitutional article on the Judiciary. The bill reduced the number of justices from nine to seven.

The second bill approved, SB-2781, was for the free printing initiative.

SB-2777 officially recognizes changes to the structure of SG’s committees made in the past few months. Previously, Senate had five committees, including the Budget and Allocations Committee, the Constitution and Statutes Committee, the Student Advocacy Committee, the University Affairs Committee, and the Elections and Appointment Committee.

Now, the Election and Appointment committee is replaced by the Elections Commissioner, True Rains. The Student Advocacy Committee and University Affairs Committee combined to make one new committee called the University and Student Affairs Committee. And, the GOC was formed to replace the Elections and Appointment Committee.

Although these changes were already in effect, SB-2777 means they are officially recognized in Senate Policies and Procedures. There are now four committees: GOC, USA Committee, B&A Committee, and Constitution and Statutes Committee.


The Senate postponed voting on SB-1784, the bill which would have approved the special request to bring Tim Augustine to campus, because no members of the Student Leadership Advisory Board were present. The bill will return to the floor on Sept. 15.

Senate confirmed both Senate appointees unanimously. Brahmbhatt said he wanted to be there to speak up for students who aren’t. Byrom said she wanted to be there because many people from her college don’t get involved with SG.

Senate also confirmed Sanchez for associate justice. Savage said the Delta Sigma Theta president is more than qualified.