Two pieces of legislation that caused disagreement among senators last week because of their similarities, SSB-16-002 and SSB-16-003, were combined to form SSB-16-004 during Tuesday’s Student Government Association meeting.
Although there was a motion made to deem the legislation emergency, it failed to meet the two-thirds vote requirement.
“Making a change to the Constitution, especially one that pertains to student money, passing something as an emergency that you’ve not yet had the opportunity to really meet with students and get their opinion on is not something I’m in favor of,” said SGA Vice President Nathan Farnor.
Dean of Students Jeff Howard echoed his sentiments, reflecting that in his time working with SGA, he’d never seen a piece of legislation that was truly an emergency.
Every Tuesday that SGA convenes, 15 minutes is reserved for open forum, during which guests can come to speak to the Senate, whether it be to present an idea or ask for suggestions.
While there aren’t open forum speakers every week, Kathleen Moore, director of sustainability, made use of the allotted time on Tuesday.
Moore discussed two issues that could have a broad impact on the ETSU campus – potentially joining Bee Campus USA and asking for large project suggestions for the sustainability fee.
Bee Campus USA is a movement to benefit pollinators. Becoming part of the initiative would cost ETSU no money and would involve things like hosting an annual awareness event and sponsoring learning projects.
She noted that more than 350 people have already signed the petition to take part, and that ETSU could be the first Tennessee college or university to take up the movement.
Assuming the university accepts the proposition, it would mean working with What’s the Buzz Johnson City, a community/university partnership devoted to creating more public and private spaces that are friendly for pollinators. There was also talk about Johnson City itself becoming a part of Bee City USA and creating a pollinator-friendly path through the city.
The second half of Moore’s presentation involved asking for ideas for major sustainability projects, estimated at $175,000. Possible ideas she’d already heard included installing solar panels on the roof of the library to make it more energy efficient.