The official first meeting of the 50th term of the Student Government Senate began late Tuesday night with the swearing-in of new and incumbent senators.
The Senate also appointed the executive members for the upcoming term. Jennifer Belmont, a senator entering her third term and former chairwoman of the Organization Outreach Committee, was elected Senate president.
As Senate president, Belmont said she plans to restructure the Activity and Service (A&S) fees allocation process and rewrite the Senate Rules of Procedure.
Matthew Diaz, a senator entering his second term, was elected Senate president pro tempore. Diaz was the vice-chairman of the Activity and Service Fee Recommendation Committee this semester.
The pro tempore assists the Senate president and is responsible for several internal operations of the Legislative Branch, including maintaining and ensuring that all documents of the branch are updated, and assisting communication between Senate committees.
Diaz said he plans to keep records that would allow students to see how their representatives are voting. He also plans to assist Belmont in re-evaluating the funding of student organizations and promoting fiscal responsibility within those organizations.
The Senate also elected the chairs of each Senate committee. Beginning this term, all committees will have the power to subpoena students employed by or affiliated with SG and its agencies.
Sen. Michael Keane was elected chairman of the Senate Committee on Rules, which reviews and amends both existing legislation and new legislation submitted by the Office of the Senate President.
The Senate Committee on Judiciary and Ethics, which oversees and reviews the court and investigates all grievances about SG or any A&S-funded entity, will be chaired by
Sen. Adam Oldfield.
Sen. Dan Shelnutt was re-elected as chairman of the Senate Committee on Appropriations, which is responsible for the allocation of A&S fees.
The Senate University Affairs Committee, formerly the University Relations Committee, will be chaired by Sen. Christian Marble. The committee facilitates communication between SG and all college councils, student organization councils and university-wide committees.
Joanne Brown, a new senator, will chair the Committee on Community and Government Affairs, which facilitates SG relations with the student body, and both state and local government.
The Committee on Programming Audits — which reviews all events and programs sponsored by SG, will be chaired by Sen. Kelly Budnick.
The first meeting of the 50th term of the Senate directly followed the final meeting of the 49th. Twenty Senate members were absent from the meetings.
To end the term in tradition, a wooden gavel was passed around the SG Conference Room as the senators reminisced about the year’s events. Graduating senators offered parting words of wisdom, and the incumbents shared humorous anecdotes about the