Student Government (SG) senate President Pro Tempore and vice presidential candidate Matthew Diaz may have more to worry about than this week’s runoff election.
Impeachment charges filed against Diaz last month were dropped after a senate committee’s review. But Brian Goff, who filed the charges, is appealing that decision, and SG’s Supreme Court agreed at Tuesday night’s senate meeting to hear his case.
A hearing has been scheduled for March 24 at 7:30 p.m.
Goff said Diaz violated SG statutes by neglecting to update senate meeting minutes on the Web site – a responsibility outlined in his duties – for five months.
Christian Marble, a senator for the College of Arts and Sciences and chair of the impeachment committee, said he dismissed the case because the severity of the accusation did not warrant the charge.
However, Goff said the charges he brought forth were not the same ones the committee investigated.
“The impeachment that I filed wasn’t saying that he isn’t ‘up to date on it,’ it’s that for a period of five months there was no way for students to get involved … it’s almost SG’s responsibility to make it easy and accessible for students,” said Goff, a freshman majoring in biomedical sciences.
Goff said the morning after the charges were dismissed, Marble publicly endorsed Diaz and presidential candidate Andrew Cohen via Facebook – indicating that a bias influenced the impeachment decision.
Goff filed his appeal March 1.
Marble said he showed support for Cohen and Diaz via Facebook, but that it was after the committee made its decision.
Before forming the committee, Marble, who did not vote in the impeachment deliberation, said he did not publicly endorse a ticket.
Marble said after the committee’s deliberation that Diaz’s job description is vague and recommended issuing a notification of noncompliance instead.
“Instead of going into a censure or an impeachment proceeding, which can get political … if somebody is not doing their job, we would send them a notification and they either comply or not comply and we go on from there,” he said.
Diaz, who submitted the minutes to the Library, said he agrees with the senate’s original decision but that students should still be heard.
“If a student doesn’t believe that justice was served, then he (or she) has the right to appeal it,” he said.
In its meeting, senators agreed to change statutes to state that SG records be “submitted to the University Library at a minimum of once a month.”
Diaz said that is coincidental, and it’s been “in the works for a while.”
The minutes are currently up to date on the SG Web site.