ASUC Senate passes emergency executive order, approves 2019-20 budget allocations

Students at an ASUC meeting
Samuel Albillo /Staff

Related Posts

The ASUC Senate ratified President Alexander Wilfert’s recent emergency executive order and approved the Annual Budget and Spaces Allocation, or ABSA, budget at Wednesday night’s regular meeting.

After nine ASUC officials resigned last week, Wilfert issued an order to expedite the process of filling vacancies on the Elections and Judicial councils. The order established a special Senate Select Committee, chaired by independent ASUC Senator Regina Kim, to nominate “nonpartisan” candidates to both councils.

Chief Personnel Officer Ilene Kung, who sits on the committee, said during her announcements that it will begin interviewing applicants this weekend. The senate will likely then vote to confirm each of the nominations at next Wednesday’s meeting, according to Chief Legal Officer Claire Goudy.

The results of the 2019 ASUC elections cannot be certified until all pending Judicial Council cases are resolved and the campaign finance audit is completed, Goudy added. The audit’s deadline is Friday, but given former Elections Auditor Roop Randhawa’s resignation, the Elections Council issued a temporary rule that extends its deadline to one week after the new elections auditor is selected.

“We need to see the results of the audit first before we can fully see what happens because there might be some cases that arise,” Goudy said.

Goudy, who is currently serving as the acting Elections Council chair, elections prosecutor and elections auditor, said she does not have the bandwidth to fulfill the duties of each of these positions. The council will not actively look into cases or conduct the audit until a new elections prosecutor and elections auditor has been selected, she added.

Goudy said the referendum results must be certified before the May 24 deadline set forth by UC Office of the President in order to implement the Basic Needs Referendum and the Arts, Music and Programming Initiative in fall 2019.

Also during the meeting, senators approved the ABSA budget, finalizing how much funding each registered student organization will receive in the next academic year.

During public comment, campus freshman Ahmad Mahmuod, a member of UC Berkeley’s Black Student Union, said he was disappointed by how members of the UC Berkeley community had accused individuals of making anti-Semitic statements at last week’s ASUC Senate meeting.

Senator-elect Nicole Anyanwu said during public comment that the “impassioned speech” stemmed from community grievances and narratives, and she asked that people do not conflate emotion with hostility or aggression.

“There are a lot of people who put blood, sweat and tears into these elections, and the disqualification came with a lot of heartbreak for people,” Anyanwu said during public comment. “But, loss also came with heartbreak. … All of this has had an emotional toll on everybody.”

Anjali Shrivastava is the lead student government reporter. Contact her at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @anjalii_shrivas.