By Aleksandra Sidorova
The Student Association Senate approved the 60th legislation’s first resolution, on the topic environmental sustainability Wednesday, Nov. 3. Additionally, the SA granted a total of $3,041 to two new clubs, one of which has not yet held its first general meeting.
At the start of its meeting, the SA intended to fill a new position — Associate Justice on the Student Court. However, the candidate withdrew, their representative said. This resulted in a unanimous disapproval of the candidate to the position.
Then came the questions of funding. APOSA, the newly-instilled SUNY Plattsburgh chapter of Apostolic Church International, asked for $1,400 — a sum reduced from its initial request of $2,000. The funds would go to a banquet to be held Nov. 19 with the goal of introducing students to APOSA.
Senators asked a series of questions about the purpose of the event. The club representative said 60 people are expected to attend, including an emcee, instrumentalists and guest speakers. The banquet aligns with the club’s goal of providing students with resources and guidance in areas of mental health, career and finance, the representative said. Other “enticements,” as Senator William Donlon said in his question to the representative, include food, student dance club performances and singing.
Senators had numerous other concerns: the timing of the event falling on the weekend before Thanksgiving break, the total lack of general club meetings throughout the semester and the means by which the club intends to “keep awareness” during Thanksgiving and winter breaks. The club representative said APOSA’s eboard considered all of these issues and is prepared to face them.
The SA approved the funding in a 13-2 decision.
The other $1,641 was requested by Fuerza: Black and Latinx Student Union, to finance a trip to Albany for all 12 of Fuerza’s eboard members. The members would attend Fuerza Night hosted at University at Albany, an event gathering Fuerza chapters across multiple colleges in the United States. The money would cover gas, hotel accommodation and tickets to Fuerza Night. The trip would allow SUNY Plattsburgh’s chapter of Fuerza to interact with members of other chapters, exchange ideas and coordinate their values and missions to “be on the same page.”
Senators addressed discrepancies between the original and newly submitted paperwork requesting funding, but Fuerza President Shelby Disla specified the updated information. The cost differences between the original request of $2,000 and the amount the SA agreed to grant — $1,641 — was to be used for team bonding activities, such as bowling and the viewing of the movie “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.” The funding was unanimously approved.
Last on the agenda was the approval of the current legislation’s first resolution, focused on environmental sustainability. The resolution, written by SA Vice President Saran Kaba, proposed that the currently optional “green fee” of $3 per semester become mandatory. Other points within the resolution included a “sustainability task force” created in partnership between the SA and the college administration, as well as the creation of a full-time position within the office of Facilities and Operations focused on sustainability initiatives. An SA resolution, Adviser Stephen Matthews said, is the “official voice of the SA.”
After the Senate unanimously approved the resolution, it will reach the desks of President Alexander Enyedi, the President’s Cabinet, the SUNY Plattsburgh College Council, Assistant Vice President for Facilities and Operations Tyson Moulton and Associate Professor of Environmental Science Curt Gervich.
“Thank you for agreeing to pass the environmental sustainability resolution,” Kaba said. “It’s been a long time coming.”