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This week in ASCSU: Letter to City Council, committee chairs

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

The Associated Students of Colorado State University convened Aug. 30 for the second session of the 53rd senate.

To begin the session, President Nick DeSalvo presented to senate a letter drafted by ASCSU leadership that further denounces the controversial U+2 residency policy, which has repeatedly come under scrutiny from ASCSU and the CSU student body as a whole. The city ordinance restricts the number of people allowed permanent residence in apartments and houses across Fort Collins, accentuating, according to the policy’s critics, already exorbitant housing prices in the community.

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“The value of students in this city has been greatly underappreciated, and the lack of serious reconsideration into U+2 is a direct result of this reality,” DeSalvo said. “When students have, in good faith, expressed concern about the inability to afford housing, they’ve been met with gross generalizations of young people and stories meant to strike fear into minds of Fort Collins residents.”

DeSalvo’s presidential campaign made the repeal of U+2 a top priority, believing eliminating U+2 will greatly benefit CSU students faced with housing insecurity. The letter will be formally delivered to Fort Collins City Council members in an effort to continue voicing the student body’s displeasure with the policy.

Senate then moved into executive reports, where DeSalvo, Vice President Alex Silverhart and Deputy Chief of Staff Ayla Sirois updated senate on the ASCSU blood drive Sept. 1, ongoing Student Fee Review Board appointments, Legislative Strategic Advisory Board applications and ongoing efforts to employ a lobbyist within the Colorado General Assembly that will ensure CSU student voices are heard in the state capitol and reflected in future legislation.

Senate then moved into confidence business, where the ratification of the deputy chief justice was first held.

The deputy chief justice is responsible for assisting and guiding the ASCSU Supreme Court in their duties, such as deciding questions of legality within ASCSU, organizing campus events and promoting ASCSU initiatives across campus.

Senior Jamie Binder was nominated for the position.

A former associate justice, Binder hopes to build upon the work of past administrations and continue to encourage inter-branch cooperation within ASCSU.

“I think it’s a little bit sad that sometimes the only time we all see each other is within this space,” Binder said. “I think it’s important that if we’re working together, we should get to know each other outside of these chambers.”

Binder was approved with unanimous consent.

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The ratification of the remaining members of the Supreme Court then took place.

Members of the Supreme Court are responsible for ensuring ASCSU and CSU’s codes of conduct and community guidelines are reflected in ASCSU initiatives, deciding questions of mismanagement and misconduct and further ensuring inter-branch cooperation in ASCSU happenings.

Juniors Jala Ward, Morgan Wright, Reed Vega and Sam Abadie were nominated for the vacant positions.

The candidates were approved by way of a majority vote.

The legislative body then ratified new members of the Student Fee Review Board.

SFRB is responsible for overseeing the allocation and distribution of funds generated from CSU student fees, totaling approximately $125,000 annually. 

Seniors Jaden Busnardo, Evan Begner and Mia Ritter; juniors Grace Sjaastad, DeSalvo and Richard Tran; sophomores Tangia Zheng, Diego Rosales and Jade Becherer; and second-year graduate student Akhil Penninti were nominated for the available positions.

The candidates were approved with unanimous consent.

The election of the Internal Affairs Committee chair then took place. 

Sophomore Hayden Taylor, a current senator, was nominated for the position.

The Internal Affairs Committee chair is responsible for mediating and overseeing Internal Affairs Committee processes such as resolving conflict within ASCSU, reviewing pieces of legislation and working to ensure the health of the legislative body as a whole. 

Taylor was approved with unanimous consent.

Senate then moved to elect the next University Affairs Committee chair.

First-year student Graham Kelly was nominated for the position.

The University Affairs Committee chair is responsible for ensuring the committee upholds its duties in reviewing legislation pertaining to CSU as a whole.

“I truly believe that Senator Kelly will be an excellent committee chair,” Senator Sammy Trout said.

Kelly was approved with unanimous consent.

The election of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Affairs Committee chair followed.

Senator Enock Monanti was nominated for the position.

The DEI Affairs Committee chair is responsible for assisting the committee in their work to ensure diversity, equity and inclusion are top priorities for all pieces of legislation.

Monanti was approved by way of a majority vote.

The election for the Budgetary Affairs Committee chair also took place.

Senator Nora Aslan was nominated for the position.

The Budgetary Affairs Committee chair is responsible for assisting the committee in reviewing pieces of legislation that request funding from senate’s annual budget.

Aslan was elected by way of a majority vote.

To conclude the session, Bill #5301, “Senate Bylaws” was considered.

The bill seeks to approve the updated ASCSU bylaws for the 2023-24 academic year, which include clarifying modifications to certain elements of senate processes. 

The bill will be sent to the Internal Affairs Committee for further review. 

ASCSU Senate will resume Sept. 6.

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

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