The Associated Students at the University of New Mexico held their opening full Senate meeting for the spring semester on Wednesday, Jan. 24 where appropriations, new senator appointments and a bill introduction took place.
ASUNM welcomed two new faces to the Senate floor. Sen. Sierra Dedmon and Sen. Nathan Nail. They were both granted their seats via a roll call vote of Senators that were present prior to any other business taking place.
Dedmon and Nail were able to vote on all business during the meeting.
They voted on six appropriations. Appropriations – sometimes called budget bills – are formal requests for funding that student organizations can submit to ASUNM to be reviewed and revised by the finance committee before being voted on by the senate.
A total of $21,896 – after finance committee revisions – were requested across all six appropriations. All funds, except ASUNM’s office manager salary increase, are predominantly directed toward student travel. After discussion and revisions made by the Senate, a total of $21,170 was granted.
The final piece of business at the meeting was Bill 2S. Introduced on the floor by Finance Chair Anthony Tomaziefski, Bill 2S aims to reduce conflicts of interest when signing budget revisions.
Budget revisions are signed into law by either ASUNM’s Finance Chair, President or Vice President. Bill 2S would restrict a party from signing if they are part of an organization submitting the budget revision.
“I have a fail safe clause in case all three of us were in an awkward enough position that we couldn’t sign off due to a conflict of interest, where it would default to the Vice (finance) Chair or members of the finance committee,” Tomziefski said.
Budget revisions are requests sent by student organizations for changes to be made to a previously approved appropriation, according to ASUNM’s lawbook.
Bill 2S passed unanimously with a final roll-call vote of 19-0-0-0 (yes-no-abstain-absent).
ASUNM’s next Full Senate meeting is scheduled for Feb. 7. Full Senate meetings are open to public comment.
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Jaymes Boe is a beat reporter for the Daily Lobo. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org