ASUA, GPSC operations stalled by indecision

By Todd Hardy
Arizona Daily Wildcat
September 5, 1996

Arizona Daily Wildcat

Undergraduate Senate President Gilbert Davidson


The progress of student government appears to be handcuffed while the UA's two student governing bodies work out the final details of their separation.

The split between the Associated Students and the Graduate and Professional Student Council was supposed to be finalized Friday, said Undergraduate Senate President Gilbert Davidson.

Alex Sugiyama, president of GPSC, said the agreement is being delayed because he and ASUA President Rhonda Wilson still need to clarify some minor details about the separation.

Davidson said the delay is causing confusion and frustration, because ASUA cannot make any important decisions, such as passing a budget, until the separation with GPSC is finalized.

"Without a budget, nobody is getting paid around here. We are all volunteering our time," Davidson said. "I would like to be moving a lot faster on the split. This delay shows a fault in the system."

The Central Coordinating Council, a committee made up of Associated Students and GPSC representatives, yesterday voted to extend the ASUA summer budget until Sept. 17, a date by which the separation should be complete.

The two student government bodies decided to separate because both groups felt they could better serve their constituents as single entities.

"The split is a new experience for all of us," Davidson said. "Eliminating a legislative body is not a simple process, and nobody is really sure what direction to take."

Sugiyama said, "I don't think the process is being held up. It takes time to work out certain issues."

The following issues need to be resolved before an agreement is reached:

Sugiyama said GPSC requested temporary office space in ASUA until January, when permanent space will be available in the Graduate College. Wilson has not yet responded to his request.

Wilson said ASUA wants to make sure the $62,000 allocated to GPSC would go back into ASUA programs if GPSC should cease to exist.

"The issue of GPSC going out of existence is a theoretical point," Sugiyama said.

"I don't think the GPSC will go away," he added.

This summer, Saundra Taylor, vice president for student affairs, and Michael Cusanovich, vice president for research and graduate studies, drafted and signed the initial agreement for separation. The separation cannot be finalized until Wilson and Sugiyam a sign the document.

Cusanovich said he thought the deal was done two months ago.

"Nobody got exactly what they wanted, so it must be a good deal," he said. "They ought to finish the deal and get on with their lives."

Taylor said she expects an agreement between Associated Students and GPSC to be signed by tomorrow.