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By Amanda Riddle
Arizona Daily Wildcat
April 17, 1997

Senate cuts ASD from ASUA programs


Tanith L. Balaban
Arizona Daily Wildcat

Undergraduate Sen. Lauren Sliger proposes last night that the Senate reconsider retaining BGALA as an ASUA program and service. The motion failed and BGALA will continue to exist within ASUA as a service to students.

The Undergraduate Senate voted last night to eliminate the Association of Students with Disabilities from ASUA programs and services, citing a lack of activity in the last year.

The Senate voted 5-2 to keep ASD out of programs and services bylaws in the Associated Students' new constitution. The constitution, passed in February, becomes effective May 1.

Sens. Lauren Sliger, Chadd Garcia, Ryan Anderson, David Kramer and Kim Montanaro voted to cut ASD. Sens. J.J. Rico and Casey Cuny voted against the cut and Sen. Maile Weigele abstained.

Sliger said ASD served the same function as the Center for Disability Related Resources, except that ASD has the ability to reach out to other disabled students on campus.

"This ASD can do as a club and organization," Sliger said. "Precedent is important and ASD has deteriorated over the past few years."

Garcia said ASD can serve University of Arizona students adequately as a club and does not need to be included in programs and services.

ASD was not an active organization this year because many disabled students, including the eight at last night's meeting, boycotted ASD because of a dispute over the directorship.

Mindy McCollum, vice president of programs and services, appointed Ann Fowler as this year's director despite objections from several ASD members who said she lacked the experience necessary to lead the organization.

Fowler had no previous experience with ASD before her appointment as director.

ASD members spoke in favor of keeping the organization within programs and services but wanted more influence in the selection of the organization's director.

"I don't feel we should have to go in front of the Appropriations Board each year to see if we get funding at all," said Brian McCracken, ASD's 1995-96 director. "I also think the director should be more in the hands of the students and not in the hands of the vice president."

Programs and services receive a budget at the beginning of the year from ASUA's line-item funding and receive office space in ASUA for their resource centers. Program and service directors also receive a yearly stipend. Fowler received a $500 stipend in accordance with ASUA's bylaws.

Clubs and organizations must apply for funding on a case-by-case basis through the Appropriations Board. Clubs and organizations are not allocated space in ASUA because they do not function as resource centers.

Tara Taylor, administrative vice president-elect, will oversee programs and services next year. She said she supported ASD's role as a program and service.

After the meeting, Taylor said she would work with ASD so that it can promote awareness on campus as a club.

Also, for the second week in a row, members of the Bisexual, Gay, and Lesbian Association successfully fought to keep their organization as an ASUA program.

BGALA co-Director Jason Cianciotto said Sen. Lauren Sliger informed him an hour before the meeting that BGALA bylaws were being re-introduced for discussion.

BGALA bylaws were not on the meeting's agenda. Sliger made a motion to suspend the rules and reconsider the Senate's approval of BGALA's bylaws last week.

The Senate voted unanimously to suspend the rules, even though ASUA's bylaws require all legislative body meetings to conform to the Arizona Open Meetings Law. The law states that a public body may discuss, consider or make decisions only on matters listed on the agenda, which must be publicly posted at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting.

After the meeting, ASUA adviser Jim Drnek said Robert's Rules of Order, a form of parliamentary procedure, allow a senator to suspend the rules.

The Senate confirmed BGALA's status as a program and service with a 5-3 vote. The same bylaws passed by a 5-2 vote last week.

Kramer, who abstained from voting last week, voted with Sliger and Garcia this week in favor of cutting BGALA.

Sliger said she brought BGALA up for a vote again because the purpose of a program or service is to benefit every student on campus, and BGALA does not serve this purpose.

BGALA fits the definition of a club or organization, which benefits the members of a group who share a common interest or goal, she said. The BGALA members who were present said the group serves the entire UA community.

T.J. Hill, a psychology senior, told the Senate BGALA provides a campus-wide benefit. If BGALA benefited only homosexual students, Hill said the organization would be "preaching to the choir."

Cianciotto also said BGALA's bylaws had already been approved and should not have been discussed again.

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