ASCSU passes bill to help bring former Australian prime minister to CSU

Stuart Smith

The Associated Students of Colorado State University Senate passed a bill to bring a former Prime Minister of Australia to campus, in addition to ratifying new members. Student body President Tristan Syron and Vice President Kevin Sullivan also gave their weekly reports, touching on the U+2 and bringing back pitchers at the Ramskeller. 

Bill to bring former Australian prime minister to campus passes

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Senate approved a bill to bring the former Australian prime minister as a keynote speaker to CSU, with a vote of 29-0-1.

The bill allocated $6,000 to the Office of International Programs to help with their plan to bring Julia Gillard, the first female prime minister of Australia, to campus.

The OIP traditionally brings a speaker in spring semester. Last year, the office brought Gina McCarthy, the former head of the Environmental Protection Agency from 2013 until 2017 under President Barack Obama. Leymah Gbowee, a Liberian peace activist, was the keynote speaker in 2017.

Zach Vaishampayan, the author of the bill and chief of staff for the ASCSU Executive Branch, said the $6,000 is about 11 percent of the budget the OIP said they need to bring Gillard.

“We contribute, every year, about 10 percent,” Vaishampayan said. 

Added to the bill in committee was an amendment to set a meetup between Gillard and ASCSU’s Women’s Caucus. Last semester, the Women’s Caucus met with Vice President of Student Affairs Blanche Hughes and Fort Collins Councilwoman Kristin Stephens.

Tickets for the event, which will be sometime around February or March, will be free to students.

New senators and officers ratified 

Nine new senators and eight new officers were ratified Wednesday night. All the new senators and associates were approved unanimously, along with the eight new officers.

Seven of those officers were for the Board of Student Funding, which works to allocate money from the student fees shared with ASCSU to registered student organizations for “educational and cultural programming and to administer relevant provisions of Article VIII of the ASCSU Constitution,” according to ASCSU’s website.

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  • New BSOF Officers
    ASCSU senators being sworn in
    A slate of new senators is sworn into their office positions within ASCSU. (Matt Tackett | Collegian)

    • Jordan Haley
    • Bryce Richardson
    • Bailey Dinsdale
    • Jena Staverosky
    • Haneen Badri
    • Madison Taylor
    • Amelia Gugliemeli

Syron and Sullivan discuss U+2, Ramskeller pitchers in weekly report

In order to address Syron’s campaign goal of replacing U+2, a canvassing initiative by ASCSU will be going out to the Fort Collins community next week. The initiative is intended to educate community members about U+2, a City law that prohibits more than three people living under one roof.

“I don’t think it’s fair for students, I don’t think it’s fair for low-income families, I don’t think it’s fair for minorities. I think it’s our obligation, not only as representatives of students but as citizens of the community to try to do what we can.” Tristan Syron, ASCSU President.

Last year, ASCSU gave $10,000 to an occupational study, to be conducted by the City, that will focus on U+2 in order to determine if the law has had any impact on housing prices or neighborhood quality.

“I don’t think it’s fair for students, I don’t think it’s fair for low-income families, I don’t think it’s fair for minorities,” Syron said. “I think it’s our obligation, not only as representatives of students but as citizens of the community, to try to do what we can.”

Sullivan spoke about another initiative that he began this semester: bringing pitchers back to the Ramskeller, CSU’s on-campus bar located in the Lory Student Center.

This year, the Ramskeller stopped serving pitchers, citing concerns about underage drinkers and losing their liquor license.

“Since we don’t limit (customers) to 21 and over, any age can come in,” LSC Director of Business and Dining Services Robert Peters said in an interview with CTV. “Well, that creates a serious liability for us and the University.”

In response to students’ concerns, Sullivan started a petition to bring back pitchers to the Ramskeller.

Along with the petition, Sullivan is searching for information about other bars like the Ramskeller to see what is common practice in the industry. 

“I’m also looking to gather more data from local bars and establishments that still offer pitchers … where they also allow people under 21 to come in,” Sullivan said.

Collegian Assistant News Editor Stuart Smith can be reached at news@collegian.com or on Twitter @stuartsmithnews