ASI approves changes to bylaws

The+ASI+board+approved+the+changes+to+its+bylaws+on+March+11.%0APhoto+by+Chris+Mateo%2FThe+Runner

The ASI board approved the changes to its bylaws on March 11. Photo by Chris Mateo/The Runner

Esteban Ramirez

Editor-in-Chief

 

After hearing the opinions of various CSU Bakersfield students about the proposed changes for election requirements, the Associated Students Inc. board of directors decided to reword the new clause and approved it at the meeting on Friday, March 11.

On March 4, ASI had proposed the clause that only former or current ASI directors could run for executive positions. However, on Friday, the board decided to change the wording on the clause and then voted on it.

It was a unanimous decision to pass the new clause, which now states, in order for a student to run, they must at least attend two board of directors meetings and two committee meetings.

However, students could also run if they submit no less than two professional letters of recommendation by faculty or an employer with the addition of an executive officer seminar that shall be administered by the election coordinator or ASI executive director.

“The addition to this clause should be taken out once we get a more stable and a bigger budget,” said ASI President Mike Kwon. “We certainly don’t want to limit students, but because students are already paying into their student government, we want initiatives and projects to be increasing yearly…so we don’t want to lose that with new leadership that might not understand all the connections that we built.”

The meeting went on 30 minutes longer (3:15 p.m. to 5:31 p.m.) than usual as most of the 16 students in attendance had various questions and concerns about the clause.

 

Addressing the Issue

During the time for public comment, some CSUB students voiced their opinions on what was proposed.

Former Student Government Association president at Bakersfield College and CSUB political science major Alex Dominguez suggested to the board that as long as students meet the academics and behavioral requirements, he or she should not be prohibited or limited in any way to participate.

“It is a role of the voting student population to decide whether or not an individual is experienced enough or fit for the job,” said Dominguez.

Former ASI Vice President of External Affairs Ricky Perez said that it was suspicious to hinder the students’ participation on the board.

“I question your motives as an elected government representing my interests,” Perez said.

He added that President Mike Kwon and the board should work to achieve full representation of students on campus.

“I demand you seek consultation from the general student population on changes to our participation and shared governance,” Perez said. “ASI represents all students at CSUB both on this campus and our campus on Lancaster.”

CSUB graduate student Liz Peisner brought up the issue of excluding transfer students from having a chance to be in an executive position. She also added that it should be up to the students.

“I will say that it is up to the campus population to vet whether or not a proposed candidate is qualified, experienced, passionate and or engaged,” Peisner said. “To do so, it will then create a democracy versus this current insularly proposal, which would actually result in an oligarchy — a revolving door of the in-crowd. A very small select group.”

Kwon said it was their fault for talking about the proposed changed in the last 10 minutes of the March 4 meeting.

Dominguez then asked the board why it was still on the agenda if they regretted discussing for only 10 minutes.

 

Resolving the Issue

ASI Executive Director Jennifer Sanchez pitched to make an addition to the proposed clause that students have to attend two board of directors meetings and two committee meetings.

However, CSUB student Nayeli Sanchez said it could limit a lot of students who work and can’t attend the required meetings and added it is not required to have experience in the senate or congress to run for president.

“I don’t like that because I think it limits a lot of individuals that would like to apply that have external experience but won’t be able to be a part of it,” said Nayeli Sanchez.

ASI Director of Legislative Affairs Pedro Naveiras said it should be that students must attend the meetings or have letters of recommendations.

CSUB student Jake Thomasy said that the new changes creates higher standards and it doesn’t leave the board hanging if a candidate isn’t prepared.

Dominguez said that it is a good idea to have the meetings.

“It is necessary so they aren’t blind-sided,” said Dominguez. “Don’t run for president if you don’t necessarily know what you are getting into. I think that’ll be good. The ‘ors’ are great. I really like that. It’ll be perfect moving forward.”

He added that the progression that the board made was, “heck of a lot better than where we were in the beginning.”

ASI Vice President of University Affairs Anish Mohan said that the changes also apply to any member on the ASI board.

ASI meets for its board of directors meeting every Friday from 3:15 p.m. to 5 p.m. in ITV Studio Center C.

To read the story on ASI removing the VP of external affairs position, go to:

ASI approves removal of VP position

 

To read the story on ASI approving $2,000 to the Anchor Club from the same meeting, go to:

ASI approves $2,000 to Anchor Club for film screening

 

To read the story on ASI’s response to all the comments on Facebook from the same meeting, go to:

https://therunneronline.com/?p=11252