The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

Senate discusses gun control legislation

Senators debate urgency before Wisconsin State Legislature session ends

The Student Senate met at 6:03 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 19. Vice President Sam Consiglio began the night with a presentation on the third chapter of the bylaws. The chapter described the executive board’s expectations and descriptions. 

The bylaws are the governing document of the senate and are currently being rewritten by President Brett Farmer and Consiglio. 

The biggest changes made were in regard to the mascot coordinator, solidifying it as a part of the executive board. Beyond that adjustment, the changes were made to simplify and remove redundant information. 

“The thing is, nothing will change,” Farmer said. “It’s one of those things where we’ve just started doing it differently and we should just change it to [be] more accurate.”

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Chapter four of the bylaws is expected to be presented later in March. 

Intergovernmental Affairs Director Mei Bean introduced 67-R-10. This resolution outlines the IGA Legislative Priority Summary, defining the commission’s goals. Bean said the focus is on sustainable elections, as to avoid waste. 

The resolution passed 30-0-2. 

Senator Matthew Lehner introduced resolution 69-R-11 in support of Wisconsin Senate Bill 982. This resolution comes following the mass shootings in Kansas City and the anniversary of the Michigan State University shooting. 

Lehner discussed the urgency of this issue, describing a need to hold senators accountable and “make sure people are safe.” 

“I think having this type of legislation on the floor just shows how much our students care about it,” Consiglio said 

Current Wisconsin State law prevents people from carrying weapons in buildings with designated signs.

Resolution 67-R-11 caused debate and ended up back at the start. (Photo by Mady Leick)

The new resolution would prevent weapons on the grounds of campus and would raise the level of misdemeanor, stiffening the penalty. 

The floor was opened for discussion, and questioning began. Multiple directors described a need for collaboration on the resolution, specifically with IGA.

Student Organization Commission Director Brad Heap moved to postpone the resolution, which led to a debate. Bean said it would be impactful for Lehner to work with IGA on the resolution. 

Lehner described the timeliness of the bill, with it being the final week of the Wisconsin State session. Lehner pushed for the resolution to go through so senators would see it while in session. 

Current Wisconsin law prohibits weapons where signs are posted, new legislation could change that. (Photo by Mady Leick)

The motion passed 21-6-2, and the bill will go through revisions this week. Notable opposition to postponing included Student Office of Sustainability Director Sydney McGuine, Communications Commission Director Ivan San and Lehner.

Farmer said with the bureaucratic process of the state legislature, if the student senate had passed the resolution on Feb. 19, it would likely not have reached the legislature until they were out of session. 

Lehner posted a public statement on Feb. 20 discussing his response to the meeting. 

“The legislative process doesn’t always go the way you want it to, but I’m hopeful that we will get this passed this week,” Lehner said. 

The meeting adjourned at 7:15 p.m. and the next meeting will be at 6 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 26 in the Woodland Theatre of Davies Student Center. 

Leick can be reached at [email protected].

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