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GPSC Notebook Dec. 4: GOP Tax Bill draws concern

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Heather Newberry | The Daily Wildcat Members of the GPSC vote on the impeachment of Jim Collins during a meeting held at the student union on Dec. 6, 2016.

The Graduate and Professional Student Council met Monday, Dec. 4 to discuss a strategy on tax legislation and approve grant funding. 

GPSC discussed how to get active in the conversation about tax legislation in light of the U.S. Senate passing their tax reform legislation Saturday, Dec. 2. Mediation between the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate is expected to take place

“I think that the reality is the senate bill is what they’re going to stick to more because of the different rules that the senate has,” said Sean Goslar, the GPSC legislative director. “But ultimately, they have to produce identical bills. So ultimately, I think the graduate stuff for the most part will be left out, but you can’t count on that.”

          RELATED: Grad students walk out in protest of GOP tax bill

Amid talk concerning the bill, a discussion was had about how a message needs to get out as soon as possible in light of the council not being able to produce one at their meeting Tuesday, Nov. 21. 

GPSC representative Anthony Salas informed the council that the Associated Students of the University of Arizona were able to produce a position and advocate for graduate students in a short amount of time. 

“I’m a little disappointed that we were not able to address this in a uniform way last time,” Salas said.  “And I hope that as the reconciliation process unfolds, that we’re able to do something a little more uniform and cohesive.” 

GPSC Social Chair Marie Teemant, speaking in agreement with Salas, spoke on the effort she put in advocating a position on tax reform, but said that the ultimate decision on a movement has to be made by GPSC. 

“The thing that I noticed last time is a lot of discussion goes round and round and round and no decisions are made,” Teemant said. “That has to end, it has to end here, and it has to end with everybody in this room.” 

          RELATED: GPSC Notebook Nov. 21: Council changes constitution

Teemant said that she has spent most of her time focusing on the effects that tax legislation will have on graduate students. 

“I know that they’re a lot of other things in the bill that are detrimental,” Teemant said. “But I don’t think it serves us well to have a smorgasbord of issues that we have with the bill, and that we need to focus primarily on those graduate student effects.” 

GPSC voted to fund $71, 252 in travel grants. The council managed to stay under budget by $8,447.64. 


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