SA’s operations need a second look
Over the past few months, the Student Association has been popping up in the news quite frequently, and not in a good way. They’ve been related to wasteful spending, claims of bribery, and withholding information, just to name a few. As the semester goes on and these articles continue to come out, we as students have to start putting our feet down until SA acts in a transparent matter. This has to happen before they have negative press.
In case you’re unaware, the ASP reported that the SA Senate pays for their t-shirts through student activity fees. And not only do they take students’ money for t-shirts, but also they haven’t allocated a single dollar to any other student group on campus for members’ shirts, except for costumes and uniforms.
There hasn’t been much conversation about this topic and there should be. Taking students’ activity fees, and solely using it for your own personal gain is wrong. It’s also stealing. SA’s loophole for this is that they only allocate money for clothing that can be returned, such as uniforms. But when it comes to specific clothing for a student club, they don’t hesitate on keeping the money to themselves. As a result, student groups are left to fend for themselves.
This also isn’t the first time SA has questionably used students’ activity fees. The ASP also reported that during a conference trip to New Orleans (which just so happened to be during Mardi Gras), members of SA that attended spent $500 of their budget on Uber rides. While President-elect Langie Cadesca claims that the Ubers were used for transportation to dining, several senators claimed that the Ubers were used to transport between bars in the middle of the night.
They also have a group of transparency bylaws, which they’ve been violating for several years. First, senators’ voting records were not publicly available to voters, going against their bylaw that states that these records must be published on their website. Another SA bylaw states that they must publish their minutes meetings on their website, which they haven’t done since 2015-16.
I feel like a broken record at this point. SA has repeatedly shown how dysfunctional, and even corrupt, it can be. Some of the points listed above are due to lackadaisical mistakes, which still isn’t much to be proud of. Having SA operate in a smoother, transparent fashion is something that should be their number one priority, but that doesn’t seem to be the case right now.