New USS off to bad start

During his final night as president in 1801, John Adams appointed the “midnight judges” to maintain a long term influence on the federal courts. The move would allow the outgoing Federalist Party to influence the country’s judicial system. To make a long story short, it was a cheap move.

Well, looks like Bill Ross and the outgoing Undergraduate Student Senate made a similar cheap move. Last week, in its final meeting of the school year, the outgoing USS voted 4-2 in favor of keeping the permanent seats for Black United Students and the Inter-Greek Programming Board on the Allocations Committee. Talk about putting the “lame” in “lame duck.”

Removing the permanent seats was one of the central campaign promises from Sean Groves, the incoming senator for business and finance. He wanted to make every seat on the Allocations Committee open to the student body — you can’t get any more democratic than that.

Instead, the outgoing USS shut down Groves’ plans without a strong consensus. USS voted 4-2 to keep the permanent seats. Let us remind you that there are nine members of USS.

We enthusiastically supported Groves’ plan because keeping the seats open to all student organizations is a way to ensure fairness. If Groves’ initiative went through, BUS and IGPB would have the same opportunities as other student organizations to land a spot on the committee.

Call us misinformed, but we were surprised when we read about this. BUS President Sasha Parker said she was not “properly notified in writing of the proposed changes, and would have liked to debate the changes in prior meetings.” We couldn’t agree with her more.

According to its meeting minutes, the first time USS publicly mentioned removing the seats was on April 10, the meeting before the change took place. Kevin Folk, outgoing senator for business and finance, said he notified BUS and IGPB by sending them a memo.

If USS wanted to make changes like this, they should have done more than just send a simple e-mail to BUS and IGPB. This move affects all student organizations. Notifying all student groups or even holding some sort of public forum on the issue would make USS’s decision to keep the permanent seats seem less of a cheap move.

If Groves wasn’t able to get his permanent seats initiative through, we won’t be surprised if his initiative to remove block funding for the May 4th Task Force crumbles too.

We’re already raising our eyebrows thinking about next year’s USS. According to the Daily Kent Stater, Miltner said during the USS inaugural ceremony that he will “work vigorously to make sure all senate promises are fulfilled and every goal is reached.”

Now that BUS and IGPB will remain on the Allocations Committee, it looks like Miltner isn’t working vigorously enough.

In that same speech, Miltner flip-flopped on the issue of campus safety. He discussed in detail his plans to improve student safety. If we’re not mistaken, Miltner said during a public campaign debate with opponent Christopher Taylor that safety is a “non-issue.” We might be taking that sound byte out of context, but Miltner came nowhere near emphasizing campus safety during the USS debates as much as he did during his inaugural speech.

We’re wondering how many more issues USS will flip-flop on this fall. Right now, the tally count is at two.

The above editorial is the consensus opinion of the Daily Kent Stater editorial board.