Feel free to leave comments or questions near the issues they pertain to, and suggest new issues with the Comments box. We are a slate of the people, willing to hear your voice.
Student Government for All Students
- ASUCD Documents Available Online
Most Senate Bills and Resolutions are now online and updated regularly. However, the budget is still not online. Since this is perhaps the most important bill passed by ASUCD, it is important that the budget should not be hidden away by bureaucrats who don't want you to see how they are spending your money. Currently, it is only available in the Student Services office, where you cannot remove it even to make a copy. This is not open government. Also, we would like to see ASUCD Court documents online, should they actually have a case.
|Current Status:||In Progress. With the advent of the new ASUCD website, we were able to put much more ASUCD information online. This includes several court case records which uber-troll Vicki Swett told KrisFricke no longer existed. This is clearly not the case. Also, the ASUCD Budget will be available online shortly.|
- Promote Interactions with Student Clubs
Student clubs are one of the most important aspects of college life, and have a variety of needs. One of these needs is outreach — we will work with the Campus Outreach and Organizing Office to make sure that clubs can interact with the student government and get the support they need. Another need is money — we will try to make the Club Finance Council not suck. Most Student Organizations have trouble getting money from CFC, but moderate amounts of money should be available to all undergraduate clubs.
|Current Status:||In Progress.|
- ASUCD Bulletin Board in the Coffee House
Somewhere in the MU on the first floor, perhaps in the Coffee House, there should be a place for students to see what bills the Senate is voting on in the next week or two. People shouldn't have to come to the third floor to be aware; student government should come to the people. Also, it should have enough space for various commissions and committees to promote themselves too, so everyone knows how to get involved.
- Stopping Wasteful Spending
In the recent past, ASUCD has bought a fire truck for Aggie Pack that didn't put out fires ($5000), as well as a planned purchase of two plasma screens for AGTV at a total cost of $33,000. We intend to stop ridiculous purchases such as these, and make sure that further large purchases are at least well researched. We will ask the tough questions like: "Why aren't there ads on the fire truck yet — wasn't that supposed to make you money?", "Wait, isn't the plasma screen's operating life shorter than the time it would take you to make money on ads?", and "Couldn't we do this cheaper?"
- Fiscal Responsibility
You make ASUCD happen. You pay $35 per quarter, $105 per year. Or maybe your parents or loans pay $105 per year. Whatever. Either way, you deserve responsible spending from ASUCD. We hope to spend money on programs and projects that improve the college experience for the largest amount of people, not just special interest groups.
- Even Cheaper ASUCD Retreats
We're sure it's important for the student government to get to know each other, so they can act as a united student association. However, none of us have heard any benefits of having these retreats in the past. During the last budget, the line item for retreats was reduced from $2,000 to $1,000. This is $1,000 too much in our opinion. Unless someone can show us some concrete benefit to having the retreats, we propose cutting them completely.
|Current Status:||Achieved. BrentLaabs wrote a bill to eliminate manadatory retreats from the codes, and this year's retreat budget went unspent — Devin Whitney felt that a retreat with a small budget would be ineffective anyway.|
- No Embezzlement
This is a legacy issue, dating back to the days of SOSSS. Still, because of past events, we still feel it is important to say it. We vow that every member of the United Student Alliance slate will uphold this tradition: We doublepluspromise that we will embezzle unmore than other candidates.
- Two-thirds Amendment for Increasing Fees
Currently, ASUCD has the highest fees of any student body in the U.C. system. Due to two initiatives that have passed in recent years – the Move to D1 and the FACE Initiative – your fees have shot up dramatically. Since voter turnout is so small in ASUCD elections, a minority of people can easily overwhelm a majority of students who don't want the initiative but are not informed enough to vote. Although there is an initiative on this quarter's ballot to require a 60% vote to raise fees, we support a higher standard. A fee increase should represent everyone's desire for a bigger student government, and so we propose an ASUCD Constitutional Amendment that will require two-thirds of voters to increase the amount you pay in fees.
|Current Status:||Achieved, but not in the way we said it would. The UC Regents now require that 20% of the campus vote for any fee increase initiative, as well as being approved by that 20%. This will ensure that a small minority will not dictate fees, so this achieves the same goal.|
Commissions and Committees
- Support the Gender and Sexuality Commission
GASC is often attacked by more socially conservative elements on campus. However, we believe that most students appreciate activities like Generation Sex Week, which try to make sex more fun for everyone. And who doesn't like a little more fun? They also support tolerance of homosexual lifestyles (unlike some people), which is important in our community and the State of California. The least we can do is support them with more funding.
- Senators at Commission Meetings
One of the problems that used to occur frequently in Senate was a lack of Senators at Commission meetings. These commissions are the heart and soul of ASUCD's activities at UC Davis, and much miscommunication resulted. We promise that our slate members will attend more commission meetings, so that we will be able to make informed decisions on important issues. We also promise to read all of the legislation before we come to senate meetings. That should be a no-brainer, but it is far too often an issue at senate meetings.
|Current Status:||No Progress. This one is a little hard for us to achieve with no senators elected.|
- End Davis Apartheid
To paraphrase Abraham Lincoln, Davis is a house divided against itself. Many students feel as if the residents wish to exclude them, and to make life difficult. As students and residents have different priorities, it is important that both groups are represented on Davis City Council. However, the City Council elections are held in June, during finals week when many students aren't interested voting. These elections need to be moved to November, when most other elections are held and students are most interested in voting. We will also lobby for the city to adopt Choice Voting for council elections, making sure that the student voice is heard. And we think it will help Lamar Heystek get elected, who is a lot like Honest Abe if you think about it.
|Current Status:||In Progress. With Lamar Heystek's election, we now have a strong advocate for choice voting on City Council. USA members have also been building relationships with the city though the City/UCD Student Liaison Commission.|
- Lobby for Students, not Special Interests
UCSA is a representative of ASUCD, and rightfully should be. However, we don't feel like they lobby for the needs of every student, or spend their money on issues that all UCD students agree on. As much as we like the stances they take on state propositions, we don't agree that they should have passed a resolution in opposition to them. Not every student wants their fees going to fight Wal-Mart. We plan to work closely with UCSA in the future, so it looks less like a $26,000 money sink and more like a lobby organization that works for all students. We want their goals to be lowering student fees, increasing financial aid, and decreasing textbook prices. Since the current trend is in the inverse on all three of those cases, those should be the absolute top priority for both UCSA and ASUCD's own ASUCD Lobby Corps. If you want to support progressive causes, please, please support CalPIRG with a pledge or a donation.
|Current Status:||In Progress. As the only slate in recent history to take on the issue of UCSA, BrentLaabs is now UCSA's Board of Directors Chair. In this position, he promises to help ensure that all students are represented at the statewide level, not just those active in student governments.|
- Be Resolved When Students Are Resolved
A lot of resolutions stating ASUCD's support or disdain for someone else's policy get through ASUCD Senate. Even more are considered. Not every resolution meets the needs of the people — for example, the Senate passed a resolution against tobacco advertising that targets college age citizens, including givaways of tobacco products. However, this is actually legal, and we're sure some students like free tobacco. We hope to change ASUCD's Standing Rules so that resolutions must be passed by a 2/3-majority. After all, what does a resolution really mean if it doesn't have a high level of support? We believe that the views of senators are less important than the views of their constituents.
We plan to limit our resolutions to things that students can agree on, such as reduced student fees and fair treatment from the Davis Police Department. We believe that racism is a problem in our society, but the best way to combat it is through fighting poverty — a condition that most students live in. This also includes supporting union labor on campus, much of which has been treated poorly by the UCD Administration lately.
We will not endorse Lamar in an ASUCD resolution, either.
Failed, but attempted by Chris Herold (Student Focus). It turns out we would have needed a constitutional amendment to achieve these goals, and many senators disagreed with our sentiments. (Yes: Molnar, Higgins, Ajlouny. No: Deepak, Amaha, Patel, Salem, Sanders, Rogers, Rosas-Romero, Zamora. Abstain: Farhadmotamed.)
LEAD and the Office of External Affairs worked to create a permenent committee on Student-Police Relations, too.
- No Dead Day on Saturday
The University schedule should offer a real day off between classes and their finals, not a hella lame excuse for a Dead Day on Saturday. They should know that we already have that day off, but we really could use an extra day to study. If the University wants us to do well on our finals, we believe that they should give us an actual Dead Day for studying. This slate is committed to lobbying the University to give us a real Dead Day.
ASUCD Internal Reforms
- Rebuilding the Judicial Branch
The ASUCD Court has been less important in recent years, as it has had to rebuild from an Attack of the Uber Troll. We would like to create two new positions associated with the Court: a Public Prosecutor and a Public Defender. The prosecutor would actively look for problems within the ASUCD codes and help to represent students who bring cases, and the defender would help those units who are under investigation. Neither position would be paid, but would provide valuable experience to pre-law students. They would also give Chief Justice Kris Fricke something to do. Also, there are like five positions open on the ASUCD Court. If you're at all interested in serving, please apply.
|Current Status:||In Progress. With USA Candidate Joe Harney now on the Court, they have now seen three cases. There is still one open seat on the court, but the extra business has been progress for the Court.|
- Protect Freedom of Speech
We believe the Freedom of Speech is the foundation of a free society, and that this right to expression must include Freedom of Emotional Speech as well. However, some emotionally charged words have been censored at UCD and in the senate, most notably by Paloma Perez. That is not like the USA at all — we stand for truth, justice, and the American Way! We believe that Freedom of all speech must be protected at senate meetings, election forums, campaigns, and Write Club events. Far too many have been censored so far, to the detriment of us all.
- Whole Earth Festival Plates
There are hundreds of plates taking up space in the Whole Earth Festival office that only see the light of day once a year, which could be used to provide an environmentally friendly alternative to all sorts of campus events. However, the Whole Earth Festival is a little busy to be taking plates all over the place. What we intend to make is a new unit of ASUCD directly responsible for the plates and flatware, so that it could be someone's job to take dishes to all of the events on campus. We could provide dishes cheaper than disposables, and have a unit that will be making money (or breaking even) by it's second year. The Earth is happier and we're happier. This is the kind of program the ASUCD should strive to create.
- Remote print stations
We think you should be able to print to campus from anywhere, whether it's from the campus wireless network or from home. We will make the printer drivers available online so anyone on the wireless network can print without taking up space in already crowded computer labs. This was possible temporarily, though IET shut the program down; see Remote Printing. We will bring back the program stronger than ever, so that one day, printing on campus will become as easy as lpr -PMUremote foo.pdf is!
- Sanitary Seat Covers in Restrooms
For some reason, there are no seat covers in Shields Library, one of the campus's dirtiest bathrooms and most highly trafficked buildings. They say that they don't have the budget for seat covers, but there are seat covers in Mrak Hall. We will lobby the university administration to put seat covers everywhere, as it is such a simple sanitary device that all people should have access to them when they need them. If the administration is unwilling or unable to accommodate the sanitary needs of the students, staff, and faculty that frequent Shields Library, we may take it upon ourselves to create a bill to purchase the seat covers and pay for the installation.
|Current Status:||Achieved by Michael A. Molnar (Ignite). He had a nice hour long chat about budget cuts with the Library, which led him to several administrators. Eventually, he convinced custodial to put the seat covers in, and they're in the Library now (at least the men's rooms).|
- No to Televisions in the MU
There's one plasma TV in the MU already, and a prior Senate voted to put two more in. We want to stop the pervasiveness of mass media whose primary goal is to advertise product. Since the plasma screen run by "TUN" only offers ~20 seconds of time to student groups twice an hour, the benefit to the students is outweighed by the electricity costs. More telescreens for AGTV would only make matters worse, especially at a price of $33,000. They may not be able to sell enough advertising before the TVs exceed their lifetime expectancy, so we would like to see a better thought out plan from them in the future.
- More Local Bands for Entertainment Council Events
The ASUCD Entertainment Council may not have the same kind of budget they did last year, but it doesn't mean they can't have good shows. There's a great indie music scene in Sacramento, as well as in the Bay Area. We'd like to see more local bands and cheap shows.
- Promote Free Visual and Performance Art
There are so many artistic endeavors on campus, it's hard to know where to begin. Robotmedia, the Memorial Union Art Gallery, other Art Galleries, and free noon concerts at the Music Building on Thursday. We hope to promote these, as well as student plays, through the Campus Outreach and Organizing Office, because high culture can be just as much fun as local bands. Oh, and someone should bring back Write Club.
- Student Priority at the Mondavi Center
The Mondavi Center is regarded by most people on campus as someplace not for students. We hope to change this perception and the policies that cause it. We think that Student Tickets should be sold at a higher priority, possibly at the same time as those with season ticket requests in. Even if it cost more, it would allow students to see more performances on campus. As it is now, the Mondavi Center might as well be in Brooklyn, for all of the cultural value it brings to students. Hopefully, more than a very few students will be able to see shows in the future.
- Book Prices and ISBNs on MyUCDavis
Reducing textbook prices is one of our highest priorities, because it is something that afflicts every student on campus. We will not only seek to lobby for lower textbooks, but we will attempt to get ISBN numbers for textbooks on MyUCDavis. The list of ISBN numbers were first released by the UCD Bookstore because of the relentless efforts of Senator Kristen Birdsall. These were released to Davis Wiki (here) and Siscast, but we would like it conveyed to a more general audience. By allowing you to shop around, we hope to leave more money in your pockets and less in the pockets of Barnes and Noble, which runs the bookstore.
- Promoting Campus Safety
It seems to us that there are already plenty of programs that increase safety on campus, and few people know about them. Self-defense classes are taught through the Women's Center, and Aggie Hosts already provides an Escort Service at night. Publicity of these resources already available to people would really help improve Campus Kindness. We will also look at funding the Women's Center and the LGBT Resource Center in any programs they have to promote tolerance and decrease sexual assault.
- Tipsy Taxi
We'll say something about expanding it soon. Or, y'know, not.
Feel free to leave a question or comment:
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2005-10-31 01:06:47 I'm Brian McFadden, and I approve this message. —BrianMcFadden
2005-11-05 10:47:29 I am Joe Harney, and I approve this Message —JoeHarney
2005-11-05 11:08:53 What relationship is there between this and FUCK? —KenjiYamada
2005-11-06 14:10:41 There is no relation. Its just coincidence that some of the people used to be in that organization. —PaulAmnuaypayoat
2006-05-13 21:39:26 This seems like a very good platform - I'm suprised that neither candidate got into office. —JosephBleckman