Budget cuts not holding senate back


Nate Neary, Staff Writer

Student Senate met Sunday night with a full agenda to address.

“I was very happy with the meeting. I think we got a lot accomplished in a short amount of time,” Student Senate President Matt Mullins said.

Senator Black, the Student Senate member of the Budget Task Force put together by President Marysz Rames, discussed the force’s objective of cutting up to $527,400 from Wayne State’s budget to meet Gov. Pete Ricketts’ proposed tax cuts.

NATS has been the only department so far to present the Budget Task Force with potential services that could be subject to cuts, but other departments, such as Student Services and Finance and Administration, will follow.

The proposed smoking ban was discussed. It had been pending approval from the other two Senate bodies on campus. Faculty Senate approved the ban with 10 senators for, two against, and one non-vote. Faculty senators expressed concern about how punishment for violating the ban would be administrated evenly and fairly, and how violations would affect college employees’ contracts with the State College System.
Professional Staff senators confirmed their vote Monday morning, with four in favor, two against and one non-vote. Three Professional Staff senators did not vote on the matter.

Rames will have the final say as to whether the ban goes into faculty and student handbooks. The ban would restrict smoking to major parking lots on campus, such as Lot 10 and Connell.

The issue of removing Student Senators from their positions who have been absent for an excessive amount of Senate meetings was finally addressed. Senator Yunker resigned before the vote that required a 3/4 majority to approve dismissal took place. Senator Hagemann was dismissed.

The approved phone charging stations will be able to be accessed with a student/faculty ID with campus guest able to acquire a guests ID to charge their phones. The three stations will be operational as soon as this summer.

The unisex restrooms in the Kanter Student Center were mentioned and met with a voice of approval from the Senate. They will be located on the second floor near Student Services.

Funds for the new music app for the college’s radio station have been allocated. The app will bring more modern music such as hip hop on to the air.

A new freshman senator was appointed to represent the Social Sciences Department. Ashley VanMeeteren, a social sciences major and political science minor, was unanimously confirmed by all present Senators. VanMeeteren had to acquire 30 signatures from students in her department to be eligible for the Senate vote.

Student senators ended their meeting with a brush up on their poker skills in preparation for Casino Night. Senators will be dealing at the event with half-hour breaks to enjoy the night themselves.

“Casino Night is going to be pretty cool. I’m just going to play it cool and let everything fall into place,” Mullins said.

The next Student Senate meeting will take place Sunday in the Elkhorn Room at 7 p.m. in Kanter Student Center.