Steam Machine Discussion Yields Longest Winter Meeting

Tensions ran high last night over a proposed resolution in support of banning steam machines used by the Housing, Dining and Hospitality department.

Council made two amendments to the resolution, striking two clauses that contained factual errors. HDH is already in talks to consider fixing this problem; several councilmembers did not want to ruin chances of negotiations before the process even began.

Sixth College Senator Parminder Sandhu supported the goal of the resolution but said it needs a lot of revision. President Wafa Ben Hassine encouraged councilmembers to pass the resolution today and to make amendments quickly. Campuswide Senator Michael Raimondi warned that this is an issue that should not be treated lightly. He encouraged council to discuss the conflict instead of passing a rushed resolution.

Campuswide Senator Victor Flores-Osorio encouraged members not to listen to the administrators who believe the problems are not a big deal. He said service workers who use the machines are pleading for help. AVP of Local Affairs Matthew Vu added that council should uphold the Principles of Community and look out for the workers. He ended by saying the council needs to keep the administration in check instead of letting it check them. Discussion was postponed so other speakers could present, though ultimately the resolution passed.

Shanna Dayan and Sarah Raifsnider from the Office of Student Wellness proposed two resolutions regarding the current on-campus smoking policy. The first one — designating smoking areas in parking lots — was passed, while the other, transitioning to a smoke-free campus, was not.

Campuswide Senator Elizabeth Elman brought the first smoking ban policy resolution up in new business. Discussion ranged from personal freedoms to the dangers of secondhand smoke.

The University Centers fee proposal was amended — several changes were made to the wording — and was approved without discussion. It will appear on Spring Quarter’s A.S. election ballot.

Campuswide Senator Anish Bhayani presented the updated Athletics Recreation and Sports Facilities Advisory Board charter changes. Two of the changes Bhayani proposed to ARSFAB were accepted. The advisory board will now have the power to make decisions rather than just recommending changes. If the board director does not implement the changes, ARSFAB can go to the Chancellor to mediate and the director will provide a written reason for rejecting the proposed change to the board. Council approved the updates.

This was the longest council meeting of quarter. It started an hour early at 5 p.m., had a recess for nearly two hours so councilmembers could attend a Tim Wise lecture and ended at 10:20 p.m. The steam machine resolution arguments pulled the weight of the meeting. As the end drew near, members quietly streamed out of the meeting and right before the final role call there was a mad rush to pack up and leave.

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