Senate moves to modify First Year Council funding approval process

The Student Government Association (SGA) Senate proposed a bill that would simplify the First Year Council’s funding approval process and moved to dismiss two long-time senators on Nov. 15.

Currently, every project the First Year Council wants to undertake must be approved by the Senate, regardless of the amount of funding required.

This bill would allow the First Year Council to begin projects requiring no more than $300 without Senate approval.

Vice President of Financial Affairs Clay Gaddis, a junior majoring in biology, said he felt the need to streamline the funding approval process.

“I saw that they really cannot use their money without Senate approval,” Gaddis said.

The Senate would still have access to the First Year Council’s financial records.

The bill was sent to the finance committee.

An announcement was made to dismiss Sen. Rebecca Lutonsky and Secretary Sarah Boudoin.

Lutonsky has been absent from five meetings of the Senate due to illness.

Parliamentarian Hani Razavi, a senior majoring in political science, wrote the memorandum calling for the dismissal of Lutonsky.

“Senator Lutonsky has been very sick this semester,” said Razavi. “Considering that the Code of Law states that if a senator is unable to regularly attend, they’re to resign, and me seeing that, I thought it fit to write the memo.”

Lutonsky said she submitted documentation for her absences and in the past, senators were given a warning if they were going to be dismissed.

“[My excuses] were accepted, so I assumed I could move forward,” Lutonsky said.

Razavi said warnings are normally sent out prior to dismissal.

“Maybe something went under the radar,” Razavi said. “We have to keep ourselves accountable, and if there’s anything I can do to enforce rules, I will.”

Lutonsky motioned for her case to go to committee. The motion passed without objection, and Lutonsky’s dismissal will be sent to the rules committee.

Boudoin has acquired three absences, during which her attending proxies were sitting senators. Sitting senators are ineligible to act as proxy, so her absences were classified as unexcused.

Boudoin said she confirmed her proxies with Senate Speaker Talor Allen 24 hours prior to her absence, and that her proxies were approved at the time.

Like Lutonsky, Boudoin said she received no warning prior to the call for her dismissal.

The Senate voted unanimously against Boudoin’s dismissal.

Speaker Allen said Sen. Andrew Sudol of the College of Commerce withdrew, leaving a Senate vacancy.

The Senate also passed a resolution in support of The University of Alabama’s 125 Years of Women celebration and it discussed a $1,000 Senate donation to cover the administrative costs of the Beat Auburn Beat Hunger event.

Order of Events

  1. The Senate was informed that Sen. Andrew Sudol withdrew from his position.
  2. Sen. Lutonsky’s dismissal was brought before the Senate, and the case was sent to the rules committee.
  3. Secretary Boudoin’s dismissal was brought before the Senate, and the Senate unanimously voted against her dismissal.
  4. The Senate passed Resolution R-31-18, encouraging Senate support of UA’s 125 Years of Women.
  5. Act A-38-18, meant to provide a donation to cover the administrative costs of Beat Auburn Beat Hunger, was sent to the finance committee.
  6. The Senate passed Act A-39-18 without objection, approving organizational funding requests made by the financial affairs committee for the month of November.
  7. Bill B-01-18, a bill modifying the First Year Council’s funding approval process, was sent to the finance committee.

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