ASUC Senate committees convene for 1st meetings

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The 2014-15 ASUC Senate committees met for the first time Monday night to further discuss bills introduced at last week’s senate meeting.

The standing committees — finance, constitutional and procedural review, university and external affairs, and advocacy agenda — meet every Monday to deal with specialized ASUC operations. Temporary and ad hoc committees can be formed throughout the term to deal with unforeseen situations, such as selecting and appointing officials or addressing specific tasks, respectively.

The Standing Committee on Constitutional and Procedural Review met to discuss several bills, including legislation concerning the suspension of the bylaw that restricts ASUC financial decisions in the event that an attorney general is not appointed.

The bill would allow current Solicitor General Natalja Karniouchina to assume the responsibilities of attorney general until a replacement is found. The solicitor general provides assistance to the attorney general when not working on cases and serves as the primary spokesperson for the ASUC if it is a plaintiff or defendant in a case.

The committee also considered bills concerning the governance of the Cal Lodge retreat center and structural changes to the ASUC governing documents, as well as the resignation of 2014-15 Academic Affairs Vice President Jeanette Corona and the search to find her replacement. The senators unanimously moved the bills forward to senate floor for consideration at Wednesday’s meeting.

The finance committee also met to discuss a bill that addressed several student groups’ requests for funding. The student groups that would receive funding include Miss Universe at Berkeley and the Business Careers in Entertainment Club.

The external and university affairs committee gathered in Anna Head Alumnae Hall to discuss a bill titled “A Bill Ratifying the Amendments to the Charter of the University of California Student Association,” sponsored by External Affairs Vice President Caitlin Quinn, who is also the environmental liaison for the UCSA. The UCSA is the systemwide coalition of student leaders.

The changes include the allowance of proxy voting and an article to disallow any amendments that would interfere with the “charitable purposes of this Association” and specifically its tax exemption status as a nonprofit. The bill will move on to the senate floor Wednesday.

Michelle Pitcher covers student government. Contact her at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter @michellepitcher.