Tension in Senate: SG resumes business after recent hearing

Cody Quattlebaum

Among other discussion matters, the Senate appointed a sergeant-at-arms and discussed a new paid senior associate justice.
Photo by Camille Shaw

It was business as usual at the senate meeting on Oct. 13. However, Student Government officials made comments regarding the recent non-compliance hearing against Senate President Kaitlin Ramirez.

Last week’s hearing
Chief Justice Daniel Powers, in his report, urged senators to “disregard rumors of the legislative branch coming under fire.” He also stated that the final judicial decision was made and that it was accurate.

Attorney General Matthew Harris offered in place of remarks regarding the situation, that he would open the floor to questions any senator had for him regarding the issue.

Senator Michael Rotella asked, “What exactly is your role in the judicial process?” To which Harris replied that he is the chief executive prosecutor.
Ramirez said, “It has not taken away my faith in the system, for the system is not any of us.”

Official Business
Government Oversight Committee chair Amanda Wollam presented her report, saying that they finalized the senate appointee application and that they plan on revising Title 13.

Senator Alin Cepoi wanted to know which revisions would be made, to which the chairwoman stated it was not discussed with the committee yet.

Title 13 is the GOC statute which establishes its creation and purpose.

After making remarks concerning the recent non-compliance hearing, the Senate resumed business during the meeting on Oct. 13.
Photo by Camille Shaw

New paid position created
Chief Justice Daniel Powers, on behalf of the judicial branch, asked for funds to create a new position inside of Judicial Leadership.

The new position of senior associate justice would have tasks that would include mostly clerical duties, keeping up with parking emails and appeals, as well as taking minutes.

After debate on whether the position was necessary, the bill passed with 19 for and 10 against. This position would be paid 10 hours a week.

Senator Hailey Guerra opposed the bill, saying she hasn’t seen from the student body a need for this position and suggested, as a former judicial branch member herself, that the branch changes the way [they] do things. “We’ve never needed one before. Why now?” she said.

Chief Justice Powers said he doesn’t agree with that statement.

Senator Blake Kennedy spoke for the bill to pass saying, “We [the Budget & Allocations Committee] took a close look at this.”

Appointment confirmed, voter missing in action
Senator Jonathan Rader was confirmed by the Senate to be sergeant-in-arms with a vote of 27-1-0. The one abstaining vote was Rader himself, who said he wanted to remain neutral and leave it up to the other senators.

University & Student Affairs Committee chair Chase Baker was not present in the chambers during the vote. After speaking with Baker, Spinnaker learned he was in the restroom.*

*11/12/14 at 3:58 p.m. – Updated with Chase’s reason of absence from the chambers.

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