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ASUA Senate hears updates on guaranteed tuition, tobacco ban

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Grace Pierson | The Daily Wildcat

(left to right)Sen. Mike Mazzella, Sen. Seffren, Sen. Alex Barbee, and UA Police Chief Seastone were among those who attended the ASUA Senate meeting on Wednesday night. Updates on the tobacco ban, guaranteed tuition, bylaw revisions, and other topics were discussed.

A petition in favor of guaranteed tuition for the UA had reached 1,000 signatures as of Wednesday night, ASUA President Morgan Abraham told the ASUA Senate on Wednesday night.

“Guaranteed tuition has been going unbelievably,” Abraham said.

Abraham encouraged Associated Students of the University of Arizona Senate members to attend the tuition hearing hosted by the Arizona Board of Regents on March 25, where he will present the guaranteed tuition initiative.

Volunteer UA is also waiting for a senate approval of its bylaws revisions. These revisions will allow the two assistant directors to oversee three commissioners, according to Amanda Lester, administrative vice president of ASUA.

Currently, there are two assistant directors in Volunteer UA: One oversees internal affairs and the other oversees external affairs, Lester said.

The revision would allow Volunteer UA to expand its work into more social justice issues. The three commissioners for each assistant director would be based on a specific social justice issue, such as Tucson youth, according to Lester.

“We’re really just trying to open this up for more volunteer opportunities,” Lester said.

Bryan Namba, executive director of Volunteer UA, said these bylaw revisions are an effort to reflect how UCLA encourages civic engagement.

If these revisions are passed, each commission under the assistant directors will host a large civic engagement event, in addition to smaller events throughout the semester, Namba said.

Volunteer UA will find out at the next ASUA Senate meeting on March 26 whether the bylaw revisions were approved, Namba said.

Several senators also gave updates about their specific committee.

The Student Affairs Policy Committee voted in favor of the tobacco-free policy, according to Sen. Chris Chavez. The policy will now be sent to the Faculty Senate for further review.

Chavez said he is in favor of the policy because he thinks it will create a healthier environment for campus.

While he supports the policy, Chavez also wants to make sure there is accommodation for students who are smokers.

If the policy is passed, Chavez said he would like to see smoking areas off campus provided for students.

Chavez also announced updates about his bursar’s platform during senator reports at Wednesday’s meeting. This platform centers around making the bursar’s account open the entire year for students.

“As a freshman, I ran up my full bursar’s amount because I didn’t know the next time it would be open,” Chavez said.

Chavez said once his term is up as senator, he still plans to work on this bursar’s platform with the UofA Bookstore.

“I think it’s important as a senator that every single student’s voice is represented,” Chavez said.


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