The second-to-last A.S. Council meeting of the year began with a presentation by Mark Cunningham of Housing, Dining and Hospitality. Cunningham began by stating that all of HDH’s funding comes from student fees. He discussed a wide range of topics such as the high demand for on-campus housing, theme housing, sustainability and on-campus dining.
According to Cunningham, the Village will return to a transfer-specific housing neighborhood in the 2016-17 academic year. Additionally, a campus-appointed committee led by Vice Chancellor Becky Petitt is working on a pilot program for Fall 2016 to provide theme housing for black, Latino and LGBT students at three colleges. On the topic of dining, Cunningham pointed out that UCSD provides more dining options than any other UC campus. UCSD will also offer Halal and Kosher meals at OVT in the coming years.
When the time came for questions from council members, UCAB Chair Maniti asked Cunningham about the stagnant compensation for RAs and the increased amount of freshman students they’re tasked with overseeing. Maniti added that RAs aren’t allowed to hold a second job, which has forced some to skip meals and use the Triton Food Pantry. Cunningham responded that he’s open to the idea of increased compensation for RAs and that it should be put into the budget.
Senator Kamahli raised the issue of water conservation on campus and the use of sprinklers during the historic drought. Cunningham replied that he personally has no control over the issue but will speak with those who do.
Council moved into a special presentation from Maniti regarding the relationship between A.S. Council, Graduate Student Association and the Co-ops on campus. Maniti proposed the establishment of a Co-op Advisory Committee, which would meet once a quarter and create an annual report on the involvement of the Co-ops in the UCSD community. In addition, Maniti added that the Master Space Agreement, the lease agreement allowing co-ops to be on campus, expires at the end of next year.
President Boparai introduced the next presentation, which covered the Sikh Genocide in 1984 and a resolution to recognize it. Boparai, along with another member of the Sikh Student Association, shared personal stories of how members of their families and their loved ones lost their lives during the genocide.
During Reports for Finance Committee, F1, F2 and F4 were approved and F3 was amended. In addition, L1, L2, L3, L7 and L8 were approved. L6 was amended and L9-L14 were tabled for one week to legislative committee.
Council members moved into a moderated caucus to discuss mental health and wellness. One common issue cited by members was the lengthy waiting period for students seeking counseling through CAPS.
The meeting adjourned at 9:55 p.m.