Senate confirms its only woman of color to replace departing senator

We went to the ASUO Senate meeting so you didn’t have to. Here’s what you need to know:

Senate confirms its only woman of color this year

Senate confirmed Ednaly Jimenez-Gomez to take over Senate President Kevin Dobyns’ seat, making her the only woman of color on the senate this year. Two other students were confirmed to ASUO at the meeting along with Jimenez-Gomez.

Jimenez-Gomez plans to increase diversity and gender representation in ASUO as a senator. Jimenez-Gomez, who serves as Mecha’s finance director, will reach out to student groups and attend their meetings. Senator Martin Martinez spoke highly of Jimenez-Gomez and called her a great leader on campus. He expects her to be a quick learner when she replaces Dobyns.

Adrion Trujillo will take over Senator Robin Lilley’s senate seat representing the EMU Board. Trujillo aims to provide a greater voice for student programs on the EMU Board. He also wants to increase transparency between the EMU Board and the ASUO after sitting through the budget meeting on Feb. 13. Trujillo has been involved in ASUO for three years through the Men’s Center and LGBTQA3.

“I felt there was a need for someone from programs that are housed within the EMU to have a voice on that board,” Trujillo said.

Erika Goto will serve as a new EMU at large. Goto has been involved in Allen Hall Advertising and Undergraduate Council. She aims to improve communication within the board and on campus as a whole. Senator Andrew Dunn said Goto is “one of the most qualified people.”

Senator presents ballot measure to guarantee accessibility for those with disabilities

The Senate reviewed an impending ballot measure from the AccessABILITY Student Union that would commit the ASUO to implement the principles of universal design – an idea that aims to produce an environment that is accessible to students with and without disabilities. Although ASUO currently accommodates students with disabilities through its processes, there are no specific policies in place to guarantee it. If the measure is passed, it will amend the laws which the ASUO operates under and these accommodations will be required.

The ballot measure received support from other senators, but there were proposed changes to the language of the measure to make it more gender inclusive.

Senate has spent over 66 percent of its surplus fund so far

Two-thirds through the school year, the Senate has gone through 66 percent of its surplus funds by the end of Winter term. A total of $22,378 was requested tonight which leaves the unofficial surplus at $165,527. Senate approved all 13 special requests.

Click here to see all the special requests
Special requests:

  • Student Animal Legal Defense Fund requested a transfer of $106 for its Animal Law Movie Night March 11.
  • Geology Club requested to transfer $475 for its annual spring break backpacking trip in Utah.
  • ASUO Executive requested to transfer $1,000 for cashier fees for student groups’ culture nights.
  • The University of Oregon Organization Against Sexual Assault transferred $1,000 to bring guest speakers to its Coalition for Consent Events on May 26.
  • Green Business Initiative requested $1,400 for its renewable energy symposium — Flipping the Switch: Integrating Renewable Energy into a Sustainable Future. The event is on April 8.
  • Men’s Center requested $100 from surplus and $500 in its budget to advertise for their meetings, MOST Club Initiative Black Lives Matter Panel during Masculinity Speaker Series.
  • Women’s Center, The Siren magazine requested $800 to cover printing costs. Senator Zach Lusby, the magazine’s content editor, said the magazine never had an increase and its current budget is not enough to cover publishing three issues per year.
  • National Society of Collegiate Scholars requested $970 to attend the National Society of Collegiate Scholars Conference in Orlando, Florida from June 9 to 12. The funds will cover round-trip flights for two students.
  • Ahiru Daiko requested $2,000 for 10 members to perform at the 22nd Annual Intercollegiate Taiko Invitational at University of California Davis on May 28-29, 2016. The money will be used to pay for registration fees, gas and housing. The group has fundraised through performances four times so far.
  • Multicultural Center requested $2,500 to bring DarkMatter, a pair of transgender, non-binary poets and activists to campus for Take Back The Night on May 28 where they will perform and host a workshop. MCC fundraised $4,000 for the duo.
  • Native American Law Students Association requested $2,644 to send more students to the annual Federal Bar Association’s Indian Law Conference on April 7 and 8 in Scottsdale, AZ. The group already has $3,060 in its budget, but requested funds to send more students.
  • African Student Association requested $15,000 for its annual Africa Night. The event aims to expose and educate students about African culture. The funds will cover costs for food from vendors in Portland, venue costs, travel and hotel fees for guest speakers and performers.
  • Department Finance Committee is giving back $882 of unused funds back to surplus.

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Miles Trinidad

Miles Trinidad

Miles Trinidad is an Opinion Columnist for the Emerald focusing on politics, social policy and economics. Prior to joining the Opinion Desk, Trinidad was a reporter and covered student groups and ASUO for the Emerald from 2015-2016 and contributed to Flux Magazine in 2017.

Trinidad has worked in political campaigns, non-profit political advocacy, and a legislative and communication role for a U.S. senator.

Trinidad is currently pursuing a bachelor's degree in political science, economics, and journalism.