The Associated Students Legislative Council tabled many bills during Wednesday’s five hour meeting.
Council members addressed issues of hate crimes observed against the Queer Student Union during its annual Queer Pride Week as well as a request to reallocate funds to the UCSB Middle Eastern Cultural Club. In addition to several other items, the council also debated a renewed request to instate Human Rights Council as an A.S. entity and whether to pass a bill updating the A.S. Coastal Fund bylaws.
First off, members heard concerns for UCSB’s queer population. Representatives and council members addressed reports of hate crimes committed against the university’s queer population over the weekend. On-Campus Representative Casey Capachi said these occurrences of hate crimes were unacceptable and called for A.S. to make a public display of support for the QSU.
“We are going to show students that hate crimes are followed-up on by A.S. and taken very seriously by this community,” Capachi said.
Following this, the council briefly debated a request from the Middle Eastern Cultural Club to reallocate funds to the club for its annual Middle Eastern Fair. After being informed by representatives of the club that the event was expected to draw thousands of participants, the council reallocated $1000 of unused A.S. funds to the group, $800 for food expenses and $200 to hire a belly dancer.
Meanwhile, the council discussed a Coastal Fund bylaws bill for the first time since having tabled it two months ago. The bill’s text provided clarifications to the fund’s bylaws, with minor updates in most sections. At the fore of the bill’s requests was an addition to the fund’s bylaws to provide the Coastal Fund chair with a $350 quarterly honorarium.
Off-Campus Rep Stanley Tzankov said the council should pass the bill despite his previous qualms about the honorarium.
“Originally I thought we should move it down to three hundred,” Tzankov said. “If the author for this bill thinks they should receive $350, [his or her request] takes precedence.”
However, council members were not moot on this point. After deliberation, the amount of honorarium — or fiscal compensation — the Coastal Fund chair will receive per quarter was cut to $300 before the council passed the resolution.
For the fourth consecutive council meeting, members considered a bill to instate the Human Rights Council — a student organization established under the Office of Student Life — as a formal A.S. entity. Off-Campus Rep Chloe Stryker and On-Campus Rep Jasmine Davenport said they had been amending the bill in collaboration with the HRC.
Stryker said she was determined to have the council instated as an A.S. board.
“By passing the bill, HRC will have a set budget for the years to come,” Stryker said. “We’ve talked about branching out to contain more of a worldview. It’s something that we don’t have in A.S., and I think it’s needed. If it does end up [lacking membership], then somebody can [remove it from] A.S. next year.”
The council tabled the bill for another week to allow further drafting and deliberation.