The Students and the Senate

How many of you actively participate in the government of this University? Students often complain about campus policies, but how many of us have actually done something about it? Wisconsin State Statue 36.09 (5) states ” . . . students shall have the primary responsibility for the formulation and review of policies concerning student life, services, and interests.” It is the responsibility of students to determine the effectiveness and prudence of the policies at UW-Parkside. This is why we hold elections. The dissatisfied students can either run for a position in Parkside Student Government or they can vote for the candidate they feel suits them most. Recently, five new members have been added to the legislative branch of PSG.

Kenneth Horton, a Segregated University Fee Allocation Committee (SUFAC) member whose role is affected directly by the decisions of the senate, had the following to say in regards to the elections: “The elections are very important because we are a university. Each year gives you a fresh outlook and a fresh group of students that helps to further our student body.” It is important that all students are aware of the PSG Senate’s role, power, obligations, and duties that are required to be performed at Parkside.

The constitution of PSG explicitly states all of these duties. I have simply rephrased them. Senators must perform two hours of service every week that are external to the weekly meetings of PSG that will benefit the Student Body. It requires them to hold meetings at the very least weekly in both the Spring and the Fall semesters. Senators are required to attend every single meeting unless they provide a notice to the President Pro Tempore or Parliamentarian at least 24 hours prior to the meeting, and this notice must be approved. The meeting will only be operational if the minimum majority of over one half of the senate is present.

They are required to base their meetings around the newest edition of Robert’s Rules of Order unless it contradicts the P.S.G. constitution. The senate has the following powers: they can approve legislation for ratification; they can override vetoes from the PSG President with two thirds of the senators’ support, with referendums requiring a two-thirds vote. Impeachment or censure of any member of PSG or its committees requires the same vote. They can approve amendments to the constitution for election and they can also remove any member of SUFAC by voting “no confidence” with a two-thirds vote.

The nomination for Parliamentarian is approved with a two-thirds vote whereas executive appointments only require a majority vote. The President Pro Tempore is elected at the first meeting of the year, presides over the meetings, is a voting member of senate and must have served at least a semester as a senator to qualify. He or she is eligible to hold an emergency meeting of the Parkside P.S.G., but must give at least 48 hours notice if he or she wishes to do so.

If you are interested in becoming active in Parkside Student Government, or if you are interested in further study of their constitution, you can pick up a “University of Wisconsin Parkside Student Government Candidate Nomination Packet” from them and you will find all of the information that is necessary. PSG holds its weekly meeting in the Oak Room at 5 P.M. on Wednesdays and it is the duty of all students to stay informed in regards to the governing body that presides over the policies of this great university.

Story by Jake Halverson

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