This week in ASCSU: SCASLA, election of parliamentarian

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(Graphic Illustration by Christine Moore-Bonbright | The Collegian)

Sam Hutton, Staff Reporter

The Associated Students of Colorado State University convened March 1 for the 21st session of the 52nd senate.

After two new senators were sworn into office by Deputy Chief Justice Kelley Dungan, guest speakers from the CSU Student Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architecture presented to senate on the work of the CSU College of Agricultural Sciences, detailing community engagement and interactive student events that work to strengthen the architecture community on campus.

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The presentation also detailed the student organization’s recent approval to receive funding totaling $15,000 from the Board for Student Organization Funding to help facilitate the 2023 LA Days Spring Lecture Series, which grants students from all majors the opportunity to engage with professional landscape architects and network with potential future employers.

Because BSOF-approved funding exceeding $14,000 requires senate approval, the legislative body voted to enter into Committee of the Whole, which allows senate to draft, expedite and pass legislation within the senate session.

The drafted bill passed with unanimous consent.

After senate decided to skip in-person executive and judicial reports, the session moved into confidence business, where the election for parliamentarian was first held.

The parliamentarian is responsible for assisting the legislative cabinet maintain order and transparency in the legislative process, edit pieces of legislation during senate sessions, help update the ASCSU website to maintain transparency and facilitate communications efforts throughout all branches of ASCSU.

Seniors Kevin Clark and Parker Doyle were nominated for the position.

Clark, a previous senator and parliamentarian, said he believes his experience and heartfelt dedication to maintaining order, transparency and accessibility within senate make him the ideal candidate for the position.

“ASCSU can be a very frustrating space, but I have always been passionate about representing students and about the pure power of student advocacy,” Clark said. “I think that it’s really important that we continue to provide a space for students to have that control over the operations of this university and that they have a voice.”

Doyle, a current senator for the Walter Scott Jr. College of Engineering and former Constitution Caucus chair, said he believes his experience with complex constitutional procedure and an intimate knowledge of ASCSU bylaws will allow him to excel if elected.

“As chair of the Constitution Caucus, I had a lot of experience through running zoom meetings and through managing and explaining documents in my committee meetings, so that part of the role of parliamentarian I definitely have a lot of experience in,” Doyle said.

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During the discussion and debate process, several senators voiced their vehement support for Clark, including Senator Ariadne Athey.

“Electing (Clark) to this job means we can all breathe a collective sigh of relief knowing that someone is taking care of this space,” Athey said.

Clark was elected parliamentarian by way of majority vote. The oath of office was administered by Speaker of the Senate Nick DeSalvo

Lex 5207, “Voting Rights and Chairship,” was then discussed.

The legislation clarifies the voting rights of associate senators by determining that associate senators can only be granted voting rights if they hold a committee chair position.

The current process of associate senator voting recently came into question after several instances of misunderstanding and discrepancies in the voting process limited the effectiveness of the voting policy.

The lex will be sent to the University Affairs Committee.

Bill 5214, “Financial Visibility Bill,” was also considered.

The bill seeks to create a student website that allows for CSU students to easily access documents pertaining to recent senate happenings and objectives including approved legislation and senate spending.

The legislative author believes the legislation will promote increased senate transparency and visibility, expand campus outreach efforts and further educate the student body on the relevance of ASCSU.

The bill will be sent to the Budgetary, Internal, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Affairs Committees.

Bill 5215, “Elections Code Amendments,” was also discussed to conclude the meeting.

The legislation makes minor adjustments to the official ASCSU election process in an attempt to smoothen the process and increase transparency and accessibility during the election cycle.

After the bill was expedited, it was passed by way of majority vote.

ASCSU Senate will resume March 8.

Reach Sam Hutton at news@collegian.com or on Twitter @Sam_Hut14.