The Observer is a student-run, daily print & online newspaper serving Notre Dame, Saint Mary's & Holy Cross. Learn about us.



Senate meets with officials, discusses GreeNDot proposal

| Thursday, September 5, 2019

In a meeting last night in the Lafortune Student Center, the Notre Dame student senate met with Club Coordination Council (CCC) chair Jordan Isner to discuss CCC fund allocation and expenses. It was the first meeting between the two organizations since legislation was passed mandating CCC leadership meet with the senate at least once a semester.

Isner, a senior, explained to the senate the function of the CCC, the process by which it allocates funds to clubs, how it decides which clubs receive cuts or support, how it reallocates funds during the winter and spring, alternative methods to funding clubs, the six types of clubs and the percent of expenses for clubs covered by the Student Union. 

Per Isner’s presentation, about 16% of clubs’ total expenses are covered by assistance from CCC funds, as compared to the 31% to 100% of expenses covered by the Student Union for the various student councils, Student Union Board and other student government organizations. The next slide revealed clubs receive 40% of all funds while the student government received 58% of all funds.

Isner explained to the senators at the meeting the 40% figure marked a 3% increase from last year due to legislation passed in the spring, and a substantial amount of CCC’s funds go towards club sports. 

These facts and figures prompted a discussion as to whether or not clubs should be appropriated more money. Arguments amongst the senators primarily centered on the number of students these clubs catered towards, whether some of the more expensive clubs such as Men’s Rowing warranted their allocation of funds and other questions addressed toward Isner.

“I was happy to get to talk to senate about how the spring allocation process went last spring,” Isner said after the meeting. “I think it’s important that the CCC remain as transparent as possible with the senate, and I look forward to working with the senate this semester to help clubs as much as possible.”

Once debate had closed on the CCC presentation, the topic of next week’s meeting with the student union treasurer, senior Christine Arcoleo, was briefly mentioned. She is representing the Financial Management Board who allocates the previously mentioned 58% of funds for student government.

“For next week, I’m excited to explain to the senate how the Financial Management Board allocates money to the various student union organizations,” Arcoleo said after the meeting, “It will be beneficial for us to have a debate discussing the discrepancies between the CCC’s funding and the student union organization’s funding.”

The next topic of the night was a new resolution S01920-16, which is currently in committee. The resolution would seek to require that “all officials, elected and appointed, enumerated in [the Constitution of the Undergraduate Student Body] must complete a violence prevention training course as recommended by the University’s Gender Relations Center.” GreeNDot is the current recommended program.

The resolution has not passed. Debate on the bill primarily focused on the usage of the word “must” as opposed to “should,” and potential ramifications to leaders who miss the established deadline. The usage of the word “must” would require punishments to those non-compliant, and “should” makes the resolution highly recommended but not actually required. Other concerns were about how many students would now need to be certified and when to schedule the course.

Senators mentioned explicitly the offices this change would impact include: student body elected officials; the executive cabinet; class council elected officers but not members; Hall President Council’s chairs, presidents and vice presidents; CCC officers but not members; Judicial Council president and vice president but not subordinate members; freshman and hall representatives; all of Freshman Class Council and all of Financial Management Board. There are potentially other offices this would affect as well.

Student body vice president Patrick McGuire, a junior, supported passing the resolution once it had gone back through constitutional committee to update the wording of the resolution. 

“I think having student leaders who are really visible being GreeNDot certified is a great way to have a very visible presence of violence prevention on campus,” McGuire said after the meeting.

In an update from last week, student leaders from Notre Dame, Holy Cross and Saint Mary’s met to discuss potential replacements for the recently-cancelled Midnight Express. The two main ideas floated was a subsidized ride sharing plan through Lyft or Uber, and a replacement shuttle owned by the University.

Finally, the senate will be meeting in two weeks with Notre Dame Police Chief Keri Kei Shibata and associate vice president for residential life Heather Rakoczy Russell to discuss the changes to ID card access. The student government will also be hosting its student government “First Year Bonanza” this Sunday.

Tags: , , , , ,

About Jack Jerit

Contact Jack