On the morning of May 10, a few hours before the first Senate meeting of the Summer semester, Student Government President John Aloszka announced the creation of an ad-hoc committee for elections engagement and reform. According to Aloszka, the purpose of this committee will be to deliver a report to the Office of Election with recommendations on how to better engage students in the democratic process.
In his announcement, Aloszka voiced concerns over the fact that the previous two Senate elections had been largely uncontested. He also stated that the lack of competition for Senate seats delegitimizes Senate powers. Aloszka explained that without this competition of persons and ideas, the Senate is rendered not as representative as it could be.
In order to ensure “apolitical and nonpartisan” recommendations for the Office of Elections, Aloszka assured that committee members would only be confirmed after completing an ethics form.
This committee is expected to deliver the recommendations before the Fall elections occur.
During Senate, the executive order was left undiscussed. It was announced, however, that the Office of Elections was working with the IT department to develop a new system of voting. The new system was described as both easier for students to use and more efficient, as it will utilize one screen instead of two.
The new system was tested for the first time by the Senate members during their meeting, but several issues were quickly discovered. Users who were able to access the website were unable to interact with it, and other users were unable to access it at all. With these issues identified, fixes were planned and the system will be tested again at the next Senate meeting.
Chairman Kenneth Smith also announced his acceptance of his appointment to Budget Allocation Chair to Treasurer.
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