SGA Undergrads Discuss Proposed Restructure

SGA President and College senior Max Zoberman proposes an undergraduate government structure should the bill to split SGA into autonomous branches pass. / Michelle Lou, News Editor
SGA President and College senior Max Zoberman proposes an undergraduate government structure should the bill to split SGA into autonomous branches pass. / Michelle Lou, News Editor

The 50th Legislature of the Student Government Association (SGA) discussed the proposed SGA restructure in an undergraduate-only meeting following its legislative meeting and confirmed two appointments, one to the Constitutional Council and one to the SGA President’s Cabinet by passing two bills during its Monday meeting.

After the meeting adjourned, SGA President and College senior Max Zoberman led an undergraduate-only discussion on the possible structure of the undergraduate SGA should the bill pass in the University-wide referendum.

SGA College-wide Representative and College junior William Palmer presented the proposed undergraduate governing structure to the undergraduate legislators in anticipation of the referendum.

The proposed governing structure called for a 10-person legislature composed of a College representative from each class; a junior and senior Goizueta Business School representative; a junior and senior Nursing representative; one freshman; and a sophomore Oxford College representative. One ex-officio Graduate Student Government Association (GSGA) member would also sit on the undergraduate legislature.

Palmer invited undergraduate legislators to provide feedback on the proposed structure. Some legislators expressed concerns that 10 legislators would not be enough to represent the diverse campus.

Vice President for Alumni Relations and Goizueta Business School junior John Baker said that having only 10 elected positions would diminish the “undergraduate experience” because fewer undergraduate students would have the opportunity to participate in SGA.

Palmer said that the limited number of  legislators would force those who obtain a position to be more active, pointing out that only two undergraduate legislators — Zoberman and Executive Vice President and Business School junior Gurbani Singh — wrote bills last semester.

“This [new structure] fosters a much more active role that each legislator has to take on,” Palmer said. “Every legislator is going to deliver a legislative report. This increases accountability and activity.”

Zoberman, Singh, SGA Chief of Staff and College senior Julianna Joss, Greenbaum, GSGA Vice President, Laney graduate student Mary Herrick and all of the SGA advisors were involved in drafting the proposal, according to Zoberman.

Bill 50sl20 called for the confirmation of Emory School of Law second-year Lorenia Lopez to Constitutional Council justice on the grounds that she has “the relevant experience and significant involvement with organizations dedicated to building an inclusive and supportive community.” Lopez will hear and decide questions of constitutionality on any University action that affects student groups.

Bill 50sl21 nominated Goizueta Business School senior Christopher Lam for attorney general. The role includes advising SGA and all chartered organizations on the constitutionality of their actions.

SGA passed both bills unanimously.

Bill 50s818, which requested $2,000 for the expansion of the African Student Association’s “Taste of Africa” event, was tabled until next week’s meeting because SGA Vice President of Finance and Goizueta Business School senior Jason Yu said there was not enough information to vote on it yet.

Michelle Lou contributed reporting.

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