Gupta Hopes to Achieve Fiscal Independence From University

The first A.S. Council meeting of 2010 was largely uneventful, as councilmembers discussed senate projects and student initiatives.

Alumnus Chris Westling explained a proposal to expand the San Diego Old Town Trolley to include a stop at University City, connecting UCSD to SDSU and Petco Park.

Student director of the Student Sustainability Collective Elizabeth Elman presented an update on the California High-Speed Rail, which was approved by voters in November 2008.

Elman and Westling said the rail would make UC campuses more accessible for students and urged councilmembers to support these initiatives

President Utsav Gupta presented his plan to create a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization he hopes would separate A.S. from the university and give the council more fiscal flexibility.

Gupta said he wants to model his plan on the one used by UC Berkeley’s student government and collect voluntary student fees of $5 to $10 per quarter to improve student life for commuters. He proposed constructing off-campus housing and a Greek row, as well as obtaining legal representation.

Muir senators Ryan O’Rear and Lynne Swerhone announced that their council project, a KSDT radio show, will air next Tuesday at 1 a.m.

Campuswide Senator Tobias Haglund informed the council that plans for the A.S. Store are near completion and begged the council to help him write a business plan.

AVP Enterprise Operations Rishi Ghosh announced that the Grove Cafe will be reopening Jan. 19.

“A blast of promotion next week will be the most critical part of its success, or not a success, however it goes,” Ghosh said.

Councilmembers debated for about 10 minutes over whether to close the meeting to the public before discussing the creation of a co-managerial position for the Grove Cafe.

As the only individual present at the meeting who was not a member of the A.S. council, I took the hint, but waited for an official vote before waiting outside for 30 minutes.

Upon my return, councilmembers voted to approve the position.

As the council moved on to new business, they discussed trivial matters, bringing up the question of whether various proposals even belonged in new business, which is reserved for pressing and timely issues.

Haglund pushed for an approval to rewrite the standing rules to have meetings end at his proposed deadline of 11 p.m. A number of councilmembers stated their disapproval of this irrelevant topic.

“I don’t want this to wait — if it fails then it fails,” Haglund said. The motion did fail, but the council voted to discuss the issue next week.

VP Finance and Resources Peter Benesch wanted to put into writing that “no event that charges admission for undergraduate students will receive funding from A.S., with exceptions from the Student Organization Funding Advisory Board and the finance committee.”

The proposal passed by a roll-call vote 12-10.

More to Discover
Donate to The UCSD Guardian
$210
$500
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists at University of California, San Diego. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment, keep printing our papers, and cover our annual website hosting costs.

Donate to The UCSD Guardian
$210
$500
Contributed
Our Goal