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UPUA Passes Two Pieces Of Legislation In The Assembly’s Third Meeting

In its third meeting of the school year, UPUA’s tenth assembly tackled its densest agenda yet. The meeting lasted an hour and forty-five minutes and included two pieces of legislation as well a hefty amount of discussion.

After the meeting was called to order, at-large representative Darian Gist made a motion to strike the work session scheduled for the end of the meeting, which failed after a vote of 8-22.

President Emily McDonald gave a special presentation to the assembly explaining the Board of Trustees and UPUA’s relationship with the board. She noted some questions were raised after Luke Metaxas visited last week’s meeting. She explained a breakdown of the positions on the board, her and Luke’s respective roles and the committees they sit on, and the significance of the codified student trustee.

The reports by President McDonald and Vice President Terry Ford gave updates on ongoing projects and thanked members of the assembly for attending the ‘Call to Action’ initiative. They both agreed it was very successful and Ford commented on the good attendance from both students and members of the assembly. Following the reports and President McDonald’s brief special presentation, a number of amendments were made to the agenda and the assembly had a five minute caucus breakout before tackling the new business for the week.

First up, Mark Homan was confirmed as the new director of the Student Financial Education Center by a vote of 29-1. Homan was sworn in alongside the new Schreyer Honors College representative, Zac Cohen.

The assembly unanimously reinstated the budgetary policy before tackling its first of two resolutions. Bill 02-10 was the 2015-16 renewal of UPUA’s partnership with the Princeton Review, which helps provide study materials to students. After some brief discussion, the resolution passed 10 minutes later with a vote of 28-2.

The next resolution, Bill 04-10 ‘Support of the Penn State Reads Program,’ seemed simple enough but took up the majority of the meeting. A petition on with more than 4,000 signatures from people not affiliated with the university calls for President Eric Barron to ban ‘The Boom’ from the Penn State Reads program and cancel all events coinciding with the book. It’s important to note the book was distributed at the beginning of the summer.

There was about 20 minutes of back and forth between representatives on the book, its content, its opinion on fracking, and the petition. At-large rep Gist made her second motion of the night to table the resolution indefinitely which ultimately failed 12-19.

Schreyer rep Cohen made a motion to move the resolution to a vote after adding, “if we can’t unanimously agree on supporting Penn State Reads, what are we going to agree on this year?” The vote ultimately passed 22-7-2.

The remainder of the meeting was business as usual. The reports from the Chief Justice and Committees were all short with no new concrete information. There was talk of implementing the general education reform, a possible formal clothing rental program for students for interviews, and expanding the blue and white brigade to other sports.

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