ASRC attendance policy comes into question

To avoid further discrepancies with attendance, ASRC
implemented a written contract agreement for the first time.

Allegations regarding Activity and Service Fee Recommendation Committee (ASRC) attendance at the Nov. 26 Student Government (SG) Senate meeting took ASRC leadership by surprise.

Sen. Samuel Camilo brought up to the Senate what he believed was an issue regarding ASRC member absences during department tours, claiming they should be held accountable. While seeking transparency among the Senate and ASRC, Camilo claimed that attendance was not taken during the department tours.

Amid Camilo’s claims, Yusuf Fattah, ASRC CFO and vice chair, said that attendance during department tours are supplemental for committee members, which means that they are not mandatory.

In addition, Fattah said that he wasn’t told beforehand that ASRC attendance would be discussed during Senate and Camilo should have sought other channels before presenting it to Senate.

“There’s only one person right now in this room qualified to speak on ASRC and that’s me,” Fattah said. “Second of all, to address a point that quite honestly came for my character and the chair’s character, the reason we have not reported the percentages yet is because we have only met three times.

“What we are going to do is take a look at who attended tours, because we do have a mental record of who attended tours. We also have every single excusal for members not coming to tours. And we do have the attendance records from those first three meetings, and we will be going to be emailing these people to sit down with me, Travis (McCloskey) and Gary (Manka) and discuss.”

Camilo said that the reason why he did not communicate with either the chair or the vice chair of ASRC was that he wanted transparency with the Senate.

“I want people to be held accountable,” Camilo said. “It’s not like I’m not going to try to VOC (vote of confidence) anyone. I’m not trying to have allegations on anyone. I’m just trying to have transparency between ASRC and the Senate. And I don’t see anything wrong with that.

“I do have records of what I saw, the people that I saw. It’s what I see with my own eyes with people who were not there. So that’s factual.”

Camilo declined an interview with The Oracle to clarify his stance.

In an email to ASRC, Chair Travis McCloskey reinforced that tours are a supplementary service and it was created to provide a forum to committee members to ask questions.

“The intention behind providing [department tours] was to inform members of the committee an opportunity to meet the department leadership and learn more about how departments operate,” McCloskey wrote in the email addressed to ASRC. “Since some of these tours were outside normal ASRC hours, there was no way we could fairly require those to attend every single one. Hence, Yusuf and I did not track attendance.”

To avoid further discrepancies with attendance, Fattah said in an interview with The Oracle that the committee members are required to comply and sign a contract with outlined expectations for both the ASRC chair and vice chair as well as the overall committee members.

A verbal agreement was used for past ASRC meetings. However, this is the first year in which a written contract has been used, according to Fattah.

The contract, created by McCloskey and Fattah, imposed a system of accountability that will be used in the spring semester in order to track the attendance of committee members. The system will be used and tracked by the vice chair, which records attendance based on percentage.

ASRC members are required to comply with an 85 percent minimum attendance during meetings throughout the year. In case a committee member falls below an 80 percent attendance, then it would lead to a meeting with Student Government Advising and Training Office’s (SGATO) director, Gary Manka. Anything below 75 percent will be notified to Senate, where it will be decided, based on a VOC, whether the committee member should be expelled from ASRC.

An Excel sheet will be used to keep track of the attendance points throughout the semester. A box titled “total time ASRC has been in session” will be created where it will have all the committee members’ names on it. Then, the duration of each break will be recorded as a percentage next to each member’s name.

Excused absences, as well as unexcused, will also be accounted for in the percentage, according to Fattah.

“There were definitely feelings of confusion and feelings of I guess going behind people’s backs because a big sentiment that was brought up a lot on the recording was why he did not talk to the chair and vice chair beforehand,” Fattah said.