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The University Star




The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Student Government votes for monetary compensation, new parliamentarian

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The Student Government Senate voted on legislation that would allow senators to receive payment for meetings attended and elected a new parliamentarian during its March 22 meeting. 
Sen. Matthew Smith accepted his nomination and subsequent victory in a GroupMe vote to the position of Senate parliamentarian, replacing Cody DeSalvo, who resigned from the role and his position of senator on March 22 after multiple attempts to censure and remove him from the body went to appeals.
A resolution authored by Smith titled “A Resolution Upholding C.D.C Regarding Indoor Mask and No Longer Requiring Them” passed 24-7. Smith cited Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s Executive Order, which lifted the state’s mask mandate and called for the opening of the state to 100% capacity, as a reason for the bill. 
The Senate passed a resolution authored by Sen. Camille Settegast calling for the national anthem to play before every meeting 26-6, in addition to the Texas and U.S. pledges. The anthem previously played before but was removed from the proceedings for “some unpatriotic reason,” according to Sen. Spencer Lewis. 
The Senator Pay Act, authored by Smith, calling for student senators to receive a stipend of $20 per meeting, the total of which is not to exceed $200, passed 30-0-1, with the abstention coming from Sen. Quieraney Belvin. The legislation is not clear whether the total is to be counted every semester, year, or two-year term, leaving the method for payment disbursal up to the student body president, vice president, senate leader and the Department of Finance. 
Smith defended the stipend, citing the previous work time the business of Student Government takes from the day and says the size of the organization requires more collaboration and resources to sustain it. 
The bill also contains a line calling for a The Code of Laws Title IX amendment to further protect the powers of the Senate from the Graduate House of Representatives but does not specify what protections the resolution would grant the Senate.
A resolution biannually awarding a Campus Peace Prize to a student organization “deemed most deserving” by a majority vote in the Senate passed 24-5-1, with the abstention coming from Sen. John Rogers. The first award will go to the Texas State College Republicans (TSCR) for its “exemplary organization.”
Several members of the Senate, including bill sponsors Settegast and Smith, are directly associated with TSCR — Settegast holds the office of President and Smith the office of Treasurer within the organization. Fellow Senators who voted ‘yes’ hold and have held positions of power within the TSCR, according to the organization’s Instagram
The Advocacy Highlight Act passed 29-3, enabling the Student Government to post one action of the organization to social media each week. 
The Senate passed the Safe Travel for Student Spectators Resolution 31-0, calling on the university to provide increased bus transportation to and from the University Academic Center to all “football, baseball and women’s volleyball events.”
Editor’s Note: The University Star has taken notice of consistent lower voter turnout in Student Government elections and thoroughly examined the actions of the current governing body. To provide students the most relevant information that directly impacts them, The Star will no longer give credibility to actions it deems irrelevant to students, such as but not limited to: Resolutions the university administration cannot act upon, back and forth disputes between representatives that do not directly impact the student body and symbolic actions taken only to incite outrage in others. 
The Texas State University System notes the following about Student Government: “The student government on each campus shall be a recognized forum of student opinion.
7.21 When a student government takes a position on issues directly related to a Component and its operations, it shall forward its recommendations to the Chief Student Affairs Officer and the President.
7.22 When a student government takes a position on non-Component issues, it shall make clear the fact that it does not speak for the Component.”
Component = institution (Texas State)
All Student Government meetings and resolutions can be accessed by visiting the Student Government website.

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