Handbook now official, bylaw changes at meeting

Story by Haley Zblewski

Monday, Student Senate passed a bill on voice vote that approved the Student Organizations Handbook.

The bill will make it necessary for the handbook to be updated annually. One of the most important reasons for approving the handbook is that the alcohol policy was not in there, said Organizations Commission Director Jessi Van Natta.

The alcohol policy, which was looked at by Van Natta, President  Phil Rynish, Vice President Mark Morgan, Treasurer Paul Coates and Dean of Students Brian Carlisle, states in the handbook that the availablility of alcohol at any university activity must comply with rules and regulations of UW-Eau Claire.

At the meeting, Sen. April Ross offered up an anecdotal reason for why she thought the bill should be passed.

“I had a member of an organization walk up to me while I was in the Senate office freaking out because they didn’t understand what they needed for their constitution they didn’t really know what was expected of them,” Ross said. “So I handed him my copy of the handbook and he was really happy and he came in later and said thank you.”

The other bill discussed Monday night was a bill with revisions to the differential tuition (or Blugold Commitment) bylaws. The bill also passed via voice vote.

Bill author and Academic Affairs Commission Director Jake Bernardy said the revision will make reviewing proposals that were funded for multiple years easier.

“This just gives the ability for us, as the same committee that selects them the first time around, to go through and when those proposals turn in progress reports and if those things aren’t doing well, we can defund them,” Bernardy said.

A third bill, with bylaw changes for the Finance Commission, was supposed to be discussed, but was tabled until next week by the author, Director Patrick Martin. Martin said it would be more relevant to discuss next week when Organizations Commission bylaws were being looked at by Senate because the two sets of bylaws refer to each other.

Two bills to be discussed next week were also introduced at the meeting. The first is a $1500 allocation for a library book drop on upper campus. The second bill will define what ‘good standing’ means for organizations. Van Natta said it needs a specific definition since organizations are funded based on their good standing.