The Jan. 20 meeting of Students’ Council offered free pizza in three delicious flavours. Plus, council discussed fee changes, social justice and Place Riel.
Centre for Social Justice
Last week, the University of Saskatchewan Students’ Union president Chris Stoicheff presented the option of forming a Centre for Social Justice through the USSU.
According to the proposal, the new centre would be “committed to enhancing the student experience by promoting mutual respect for all racially and ethnically marginalized groups.”
At the Jan. 20 meeting, five councillors were elected to form an ad-hoc committee to determine the viability of the proposal. Vice president Scott Hitchings requested that the committee submit its results by Feb. 9, to be included in preliminary discussions of the 2011-12 budget.
Vice president student affairs Leon Thompson motioned that the ballots be disposed of in a sustainable manner. They were subsequently shredded and recycled.
Agriculture councillor Ryan Hurlburt performed a mock auction for council at vice president external affairs Blair Shumlich’s request. After the lightning quick recitation, the U of S student initiatives and special projects co-ordinator James Pepler noted that the incident would be “a nightmare for the minutes.”
At the Jan. 13 operations and finance board meeting, several fee increase proposals were sent on to council.
The USSU fee could increase by five per cent to cover a three per cent raise in union compensation. The administration would take approximately one per cent of that increase.
Students could also pay $1.55 more a term, but the five per cent increase would result in about $40,000 in increased net income for the USSU.
The infrastructure fee, which has been heavily devoted to the Place Riel construction for the past few years, also saw a potential five per cent increase. In following years, the fee is expected to rise at the consumer price index of approximately two per cent a year.
The increased funds would be set aside to cover unexpected infrastructure problems.
As he does every week, Shumlich noted his opposition to granting USSU general manager Caroline Cottrell speaking rights to discuss Place Riel.
Cottrell nonetheless informed council that new air handling units will be installed ahead of schedule. The delicate process has already been tested, as the equipment involved is worth around $1.5 million.
Place Riel is set to open on schedule, with USSU chambers to open March 10. The new chambers will be named for former premier Roy Romanow, who was “thrilled to be given this honour,” according to Cottrell.