The Associated Students Legislative Council discussed issues ranging from federal legislation to student lock-in fees during last night’s brief two-hour meeting.
United States Student Association board members discussed their work on the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors (D.R.E.A.M.) Act Campaign – a proposed federal legislation that seeks to provide undocumented high school students temporary United States residency to allow them the opportunity to attend college or serve in the military.
National Women’s Student Chair Christina Baggao said USSA has been working strenuously on the campaign for quite some time.
“I’m the co-chair for the campaign, working with the national organization of the D.R.E.A.M. coalition,” Baggao said. “The federal D.R.E.A.M. Act has been on our agenda for years now. We’re hoping it will pass this year because we have a high majority of Democrats in Congress right now. … We’re standing on the D.R.E.A.M. Act as an individual bill that will increase affordability and accessibility.”
Student Lobby Chair David Preciado said the legislation was voted down in the past partly because Senator Barbara Boxer – who was in support of the proposal – was not in attendance the day it was voted on.
“The legislation was voted on earlier this year, but lost by only eight votes,” Preciado said. “But at the end of the day, it all has to do with politics and what people think about it. One legislator who was against it amended it and it became contentious within the legislature.”
Additionally, External Vice President of Statewide Affairs Corey Huber briefly discussed the 6 percent curtailment on freshman enrollment voted on by the University of California Board of Regents.
“Every campus aside from UC Berkley, UCLA and UC Merced will contribute overall to a 6 percent curtailment,” Huber said. “That’s about 2,300- 2,600 students. UCLA and Berkeley aren’t asked because they’re UCLA and Berkeley. Merced isn’t asked because they’re just developing and that wouldn’t make much sense.”
Meanwhile, Chair of Isla Vista Tenants Union Lindsey Quock said the student body is frustrated with the administration’s constant curbing of student resources, particularly the possible tax on student lock-in fees.
“I, along with a few other student leaders from A.S., got together to educate students on the issue,” Quock said. “Students responded to that and decided to take to the streets of campus. We’re saying enough is enough. We students are feeling really threatened. We don’t appreciate this attack on our finances.”
The rally, entitled “Don’t Cut Us Out!”, will take place on Jan. 28 at noon, with students marching from North Hall to the Student Resource Building in response to the university’s budget cuts.
The council also approved a request by ASHA-Santa Barbara for $1,800. The organization – which promotes education among underprivileged children in India – requested finances to fund an Indian concert from Legislative Council because A.S. Finance Board did not meet this week.