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Davis, California

Sunday, April 14, 2024

Senate discusses parking increases and bylaws, passes SB #5

SB #5 officially makes the cow the mascot of ASUCD

By SYDNEY AMESTOY — campus@theaggie.org

The meeting was called to order at 6:11 p.m. by Vice President JT Eden, who then read the UC Davis Land Acknowledgement and called roll.

The first item on the agenda was the confirmation of members of the elections committee for the upcoming quarter. Four members were chosen from the various commissions in ASUCD. Members were assigned a number from one up to the number of commission members who applied, and then chosen randomly, except the Internal Affairs Commission (IAC), which only had one applicant. 

Continuing the process of creating an elections committee, a committee chairperson was then confirmed. Pendar Salemi was recommended by members of the senate for the role and was questioned by Senator Stephen Fujimoto and Senator Celeste Palmer about her plans for the position.

“I’m a transfer, so I’m not sure how it was before last year, but I had the understanding that not many members of the student body have a good understanding of the election cycle, when it’s going on [and] what’s going on,” Salemi said. “So making sure the elections committee is involved in activities beyond just the election cycle period.”

The senate could not unanimously vote on Salemi’s confirmation since some senators will be running for positions in future elections that Salemi would be proceeding over. However, the vote came to ten yeses, zero nays and two abstainments, so Salemi was confirmed as the new elections committee chairperson.  

Kayle Lunde, nominated to be an elections committee member, was then confirmed by the senate with the same ten yeses, zero nays and two abstainments as the previous confirmation.

A new chairperson of the Student Health and Wellness committee was also confirmed, per Senator Martinez Hernandez’s nomination.

The time designated for public comments and a break was cut short due to the lack of public comments.

Elected officers then gave reports on their schedules and the meetings that they have attended in the past week. 

SB #6, which seeks to amend the ASUCD bylaws by making it faster for non-controversial bills to be placed on the consent calendar, was unanimously sent to the IAC for further deliberation.

SB #7, which seeks to change bylaws and allow verbal elected officer reports to be struck down in favor of a written report within 24 hours if a meeting is at risk of going over five hours, was then discussed. It was also passed on to the IAC.

Constitutional amendments were also deliberated on and unanimously sent to the IAC. These include CA #77, which seeks to move the elections of an ASUCD transfer student representative and international student representative from fall quarter to spring quarter and CA #78, which proposes moving the external affairs vice president election from fall quarter to spring quarter.

The senate then moved to deliberate on SB #5, legislation proposed last week. The bill, authored by Senator Gaius Ilupeju, calls for a cow to become the official ASUCD mascot and for an official design to be created at a later date. 

“We held elections in spring, and that ballot sought to change Gunrock to a cow, but due to disinterest it was not passed,” Ilupeju said. “This bill makes the cow our ASUCD mascot, as well as dealing with the guidelines of when this mascot can be used.”

After further discussion on language within the bill, Senator Zeph Schnelbach proposed a motion to pass the bill. After passing unanimously, the ASUCD mascot is officially a cow. 

The senate then moved to open forum, during which speakers on the list can bring up topics not on the agenda for discussion.

Senator Vaneza Gonzaga brought up a recent change announced by Transportation Services (TAPS). According to Senator Gonzaga, residents of on-campus apartments such as the Green at West Village and residence halls will now be charged the non-affiliated rate of $15 for daily on-campus parking.

“I came here on Monday for my shift at the CoHo, and I had to pay $15 for parking, and before I had to pay that $15, I had no clue I was getting unsubsidized,” Schnelbach said. 

“We can move to request that TAPS shows up to present,” Fujimoto said. “We can ask them to present why these changes are happening, and ask them questions respectfully.” 

Eden suggested another potential response to the change. 

“President Gawde is currently talking with TAPS about moving the A lots to C plus lots, and finding a way to add student workers to those A lots,” Eden said. “In those meetings, you can also request President Gawde to speak with TAPS about the subsidized parking before we make any actions against them.” 

As discussion wrapped up in the open forum, senators moved to adjourn the meeting. The meeting was officially adjourned with no exception at 7:39 p.m., almost two hours ahead of schedule. 

Written by: Sydney Amestoy — campus@theaggie.org

Correction: A previous version of this article incorrectly spelled Gaius Ilupeju’s name. The article has been updated with the correct spelling.