SRA meeting overview: Oct 15 What you need to know about the last Student Representative Assembly meeting

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On Oct. 15, the McMaster Students Union Student Representative Assembly and board of directors met in Gilmour Hall to discuss and vote on a number of administrative motions.

One, put forward by Max Lightstone, caucus leader (engineering), asked the SRA to approve a report crafted by the Student Activity Building space allocation ad-hoc committee.

The report consisted of a detailed plan for the new Student Activity Building, which is projected to be completed by 2020. It also included information about how the recommendations for the new building were made.

In particular, it noted that 426 students were asked, via an online MSU survey, what facilities they most wanted to be part of the SAB. Eight hundred and ninety nine students voted for an architect design. The Interfaith Council discussed prayer space in the SAB, and religious groups were consulted.

Students identified study space, lounge space, study rooms, nap space and dining space, respectively, as most important prospective SAB facilities. When asked what should be prioritized, 50 percent of students voted for natural light.

It’s worth noting that although eight percent of students voted for workout space and seven percent voted for studio space, the committee opted not to consider including these areas in the SAB.

The motion to adopt the report passed unanimously.

In addition, motions to open seats on the sustainability education committee, finance committee, provincial and federal affairs committee, and internal governance committee, for instance, were also voted unanimously in favour of.

Only a few SRA members expressed interest in joining committees. Though a few representatives, including Alex Wilson, caucus member (science), noted prior commitments to at least two other committees, other members appeared to be uninterested.

For a position on the Elections Committee, Brian Zheng, caucus leader (Kinesiology) ran against Chukky Ibe, MSU President. Zheng was voted in.

Another administrative motion concerned the approval of the vice-presidential and speaker operating policy, which was constructed by the elections committee.

Concerns, particularly from Preethi Anbalagan, vice president (administration), arose over vice-presidential candidates’ amended speaking format, which consisted of comparatively longer presentation and question and answer period times.

After a lengthy discussion, the assembly voted to send the report back to the internal governance committee for review.

Though the meeting focused almost exclusively on administrative points, the assembly’s discussion was fruitful. The next meeting will be held in Gilmour Hall on Oct. 30.

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Author: Cassidy Bereskin

Cassidy is a first year Social Science student hoping to major in Political Science. She loves bubble tea, coffee, Hamilton (the musical AND our city) and reading through Twitter threads.