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Davis, California

Friday, May 24, 2024

Senate hears quarterly reports, passes three constitutional amendments

Both the Bike Barn and the External Affairs Commission gave their quarterly reports and an amendment looking to move ex-officio positions to the legislative branch was added to the ballot


By SYDNEY AMESTOY — campus@theaggie.org 


Vice President Aarushi Raghunathan called the Nov. 2 senate meeting to order at 6:15 p.m. After roll call, she read the UC Davis Land Acknowledgement.

The first item on the agenda was the confirmation of four new Student Health and Wellness Committee commissioners. Candidates told the senate their plans for expanded mental health advocacy on campus and were unanimously confirmed. 

A new chairperson for the STEM committee was then confirmed unanimously.

Teddy Mates-Muchin, business manager for the Bike Barn, then presented the senate with the Bike Barn’s quarterly report. This included the current financial standing of the Bike Barn, with employee wages increasing by one dollar and the recent hiring of new mechanics. 

According to Mates-Muchin, the Bike Barn’s newest program, “Lit Not Hit,” was successful in its inaugural run. The program, which gives bikers free headlights, has stopped due to the supply of lights running out. Mates-Muchin then called on ASUCD to help with continually funding the project. 

Bike sales halfway through this quarter have been successful and are expected to meet past year expectations, according to Mates-Muchin. 

“We’ve sold just about 200 bikes this year, which is about $95,000, which is more than half of our budgeted bike budget,” Mates-Muchin said. “That’s about where you want to be. For labor, we’ve made about $35,000 in labor, which is not bad. In parts sold, we’ve made around $91,000. For these numbers to be so high halfway through the first quarter feels pretty promising. This is our biggest season, so I feel pretty good about these numbers and that we’ll be able to keep making money as the year goes on.”

However, according to Mates-Muchin, there have been some onboarding issues for new employees as well as scheduling issues due to the Bike Barn still relying on manual scheduling systems versus digital ones. 

Next on the agenda, the External Affairs Commission (EAC) Chair Daniel Mojica gave the EAC quarterly report.

Mojica told the senate the current goals for the EAC, including providing more adequate lighting around Davis, revitalizing the ASUCD housing committee and advocating for the use of Aggie Cash at downtown establishments. 

Mojica also brought up current activity within the EAC, including the promotion of safety and advocacy for the transgender community in Davis, especially following recent events such as the bomb threats made to a local library

The report ended with a plea from Mojica to the senate for engagement in discussions and projects with the EAC, highlighted by a TikTok edit of the senators who have spoken with the EAC in recent months. 

“If you want to be in an ‘emo boy’ TikTok edit, just show up to our meetings,” Mojica said. “That’s all I ask. We’d really appreciate it if you guys were to include us more in more discussions with legislation, whether that be any projects or any ideas you have going on.”

The meeting then went into public comments. First, former ASUCD President and UC Davis alumni Ryan Manriquez raised an issue involving ex-officio positions. This was specifically in regards to the executive branch positions such as transfer student representatives and international student representatives having voting rights, which they were recently granted by the senate. He advocated on behalf of Constitutional Amendment #87, which seeks to move such positions to the legislative branch, which would maintain their voting rights, but give them similar duties that senators must perform as well. 

The senate was then told to be prepared for a possible spending bill to come to the table in the next few days regarding more backing for the Bike Barn’s “Lit Not Hit” program, a bill that they said could potentially exceed $20,000.

ASUCD Controller Allyson Francisco then cautioned the senate that they have already gone through around a quarter of their budget for the year.

“So I would like everyone to, seriously, if you’re proposing a spending bill, please come and talk to me. Please get my input offerings, I would greatly appreciate it,” Francisco said. “Seeing all these spending bills come through and having no knowledge that they’re happening is kind of hard.”

After public comments, the senate took a break. The meeting was called back to order at 7:53 p.m. 

Previous legislation was approved, and new legislation was subsequently moved to the Internal Affairs Commission for review. The consent calendar was also approved.

The meeting then considered old legislation, beginning with Student Resolution (SR) #2, which asks ASUCD to under no condition accept the new Beverage Pouring Rights Contract with PepsiCo that the UC Davis administration may potentially sign soon. 

 “The Beverage Pouring Rights Contract restricts the beverage options available to students, limiting their ability to make healthy and sustainable decisions,” the resolution read.

SR #2 was passed unanimously. 

SB #17, which would allocate $838.76 to the Elections Committee in regards to a voting participation giveaway planned for the upcoming fall ASUCD elections, was then considered. 

After discussion on prizes, which was ultimately settled on one iPad and one Apple Pencil, the bill passed unanimously.

SB #18, which would allow registered student organizations to endorse ASUCD legislation, was then discussed. After deliberation, the bill was passed.

Constitutional Amendment (CA) #86, an amendment that would change the titles of members of the ASUCD judicial branch to justices, was also passed unanimously. 

CA #87, which would move the Transfer and International Student Representatives to the legislative branch, was deliberated on next. This, along with CA #88, which would change the number of members in the judicial branch from five to seven, was passed and subsequently added to the spring 2024 ASUCD Elections ballot. 

The final agenda item saw the senate move into open forum. 

The open forum was dominated by discussions regarding parking after fourth-year anthropology major Jacob Hill, dressed as a pirate, came forward with concerns about new C and C-plus parking rates by the Transportation Services. 

“I’m here to talk about ‘p-arrgh-king,’” Hill said. “I’ve noticed [that with] some of these rates, the way it’s organized doesn’t really make logical sense. Specifically, the C and C plus parking [are things] I don’t personally agree with or understand. So let’s say you’ve got C plus parking for employees and students, then we have C zone which is just blank so I’m assuming that’s for visitors. There are only three kinds of people coming to campus. Employees, students and visitors are all you can be. So I’m trying to figure out, first of all, why the C plus, which is geared towards employees and students, is more expensive.”

The discussion ultimately led Senator Gaius Ilupeju to ask for two senators to come forward and become the adopted senators for the ASUCD Equitable Parking Oversight Committee.

“Passion,” Ilupeju said, in response to being asked what he was looking for in the adopted senators.

Ultimately, Senators Chasa Monica and Curtis Chen were selected to be the committee’s adopted senators. 

Vice President Raghunathan then urged senators to attend a meeting on Nov. 7 with Chancellor May, as well as to read bills for grammar inconsistencies before senate meetings.

“We can’t just stay in questions in text forever,” Raghunathan said. “You should know how you’re going to vote before you get in here.”

The meeting was then adjourned at 10:33 p.m.

Written by: Sydney Amestoy — campus@theaggie.org


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