Monday’s senate meeting lasted for more than three and a half hours for the second week in a row. Senate president Kelton Williams expects that to be the norm for the rest of the semester.
“That is a very common thing in the spring,” said Williams. “During the spring, we have special allocation season, budget season and elections.”
With the election season quickly approaching for members of the royal court and SGA, there’s a lot to be done.
Many bills and proposals for first and second readings were once again on the agenda following last week’s meeting.
Election Commissioner, Precious Robles appeared before the senate to lay out the points system for the upcoming election season. Candidates who reach 50 violation points during their campaign may be disqualified from the race.
A particular proposal to add a clause to the points system stirred up serious debate in the chambers. The clause raised the idea of punishing an incumbent for using their current position to give them an advantage while campaigning.
This caused discussion over how the rule would be enforced and what constitutes a candidate violating the rule.
The clause did not pass after a roll call vote.
Following Robles’ presentation, senator Hooks motioned to remove himself from the Student Relations committee following an incident with committee chairperson Isaiah Lysse that occurred over the break. A mediation was held recently between the two.
After two roll-call votes, the motion was approved. A few senators were not in favor of the change for a multitude of reasons. Although the committee Hooks was interested in joining had vacancies, some members still weren’t convinced that the move was necessary.
Senator Justice Johnson, chairwomen of the Elections committee believed that personal disagreements shouldn’t impede senators’ ability to work together.
One of the last bill proposals of the evening proved to be the most popular. The Housing Goes Green Bill, spearheaded by Sen. Fortson, an environmental studies student, would put 45 trash cans in Sampson and Young Halls to encourage and increase recycling among the residents.
This will make recycling more convenient for the residences as right now there are not recycling bins in either facility unless brought by students.
Sen. Fortson, also treasurer of the FAMU Sustainability Club, has already gotten the approval of the university and the residence halls. He negotiated to get approval from housing and partnered with the Environmental Health and Safety Department at Florida A&M. They are supplying the recycling bins.
Dancy, president of the Sustainability Club, has also recruited over three hundred volunteers and counting through her volunteer GroupMe. Because of all of that, the bill cruised through its first and second reading and was approved unanimously.
This is a pilot project and its success will determine its expansion to other residence halls on campus.
Senator Nichelle Scott believes in the success of the program.
“I am very confident that this bill will pan out well because they provided all the necessary documents,” she stated.
“I also believe in their ability to have a successful pilot program to extend to all dormitories under housing.