A Constitutional Amendment to Improve the ASUC Advocacy Agenda
The ASUC Advocacy Agenda aims to reflect the concerns and needs of the student body and is determined by the ASUC Senate at the start of its new term each year. In the past, the senate has also been responsible for implementing the agenda. However, the senate has determined that the ASUC Advocacy Agenda has not been effectively executed in past years and that the ASUC Office of the President has the capability to implement the agenda itself. This amendment asks voters if they support delegating ASUC Advocacy Agenda implementation duties from ASUC Senate to the ASUC Office of the President.
Wellness and Recreation Referendum
This referendum proposes a mandatory undergraduate and graduate fee of $40 to begin at the start of the 2013-14 academic year that would fund construction of a new campus wellness center. The center would include climbing walls, teaching kitchens, counseling services, group activity classes, and cardio and weight machines. The fee would also help finance a new Memorial Stadium Fitness Center and eliminate the $10 optional fee for membership to RecSports. Additionally, the fee would contribute to funding expenses now supported by the mandatory Recreational Sports Facility Fee and the Intramural Sports Facility Fee, which will expire in 2016 and 2017, respectively. The $40 per-semester fee implemented by the Wellness and Recreation Referendum will begin to increase during fall of 2016. This referendum asks voters if they approve of this fee.
Class Pass Referendum
The Class Pass referendum would renew the current ASUC contract with AC Transit, which allows for unlimited student access on AC Transit and the campus shuttles, including the Night Safety Shuttle. According to the renegotiated contract, students will pay $74 a semester ($4.50 less than the 2012 fee’s level in 2012). This fee would go into effect in fall of 2013 and would remain at the same level for the next three years. This fee would increase by $2 during the fourth and fifth years until it reaches $80 during the sixth and seventh years. If this referendum is not approved, students will lose unlimited access to AC Transit buses. The Class Pass referendum asks voters if they approve of this fee.
‘People’s Rights Amendment’ Referendum
This referendum is in response to the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission Supreme Court decision that stated that the government cannot restrict independent political expenditures by corporations and unions. This referendum calls on halting the “corrupting effects of undue influence of money in politics by amending the United States Constitution to reverse the Supreme Court’s ruling in the Citizens United case.”
It asks the UC Berkeley student body to agree with three main points:
“1. Only human beings, not corporations, are entitled to constitutional free speech rights.
2. Money is not speech, and therefore regulating political contributions and spending is not equivalent to limiting political speech.
3. There should be a level playing field in campaign spending that allows all individuals, regardless of wealth, to express their views to one another and their government.”
If this referendum is passed, then the ASUC president and Graduate Assembly president will send a letter to the president of the United States and California’s congressional delegation each year until Congress has passed an amendment as provided for in Article V of the United States Constitution to address these issues.
Fossil Fuel Referendum
This referendum asks the student body if it supports the campuswide and systemwide divestment of UC funds from the fossil fuel industry. If this referendum is passed, the ASUC president and Graduate Assembly president will give written notice of this request to the UC president and the UC Berkeley chancellor and chancellor-designate.
Sara Grossman is a news editor. Contact her at [email protected].
A previous version of this article omitted the Fossil Fuel Referendum because it had not been included in the Voters’ Guide on the ASUC website.
A previous version of this article incorrectly stated that the Citizen’s United referendum asks that students agree with the statement that, “Only human beings, not corporations, are entitled to constitutional rights.” In fact, it is “constitutional free speech rights.” Additionally, a previous version of this article stated that the Wellness and Recreation Referendum has a $40 annual fee. In fact, it begins as a $40 per semester fee.