SA increases transparency with meeting recordings

Gracie Terrall, News Editor (She/Her)

The Students’ Association Senate met Monday Sept. 28 to discuss Amendment 20-02-A and the notion of offering recorded videos of Senate meetings to the public.

Andrew Rasmussen, Senator-At-Large and sponsor for the amendment, discussed how important open government was and the need to remain compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

“This amendment gives a recorded option so students can see what their government is doing on their own time,” Rasmussen said.

Initially, the amendment read, “The senate shall provide live streamed and recorded versions of all public Senate meetings.”

Vice President Reis Bruley voted to strike “live streamed and” from the potential bylaw, as they are still working on the logistics of live streamed meetings.

This change to the bylaw will now require every SA meeting to be recorded and released to the public in a timely manner. This includes both Zoom meetings, which they are currently having, and future meetings that are in person.

Senators opposed to this amendment were concerned that students lack interest in what SA is doing for students and the school.

“Don’t we already put our minutes out there?” Senator Peterson said. “Do we really need to keep putting more out there?”

According to Rasmussen, an open and transparent government is important, and students should have the right to see the way the senators they voted for are working.

“Just because you don’t use your right to open government, doesn’t mean you should lose it,” Rasmussen said.

For some senators, they believed the amendment would restrict future senators.

“When we talk about bylaws, I am always really hesitant to make changes on them, because those changes are forever,” Senator Anthony Shimon said.

Chief of Staff Rachel Schoon rebuttled Shimon’s statement by clarifying that all amendments, regardless of what they are, restrict future senates, and that shouldn’t be a factor in voting.

The amendment passed 20-7 and all future SA recorded meetings will be uploaded to the Student’s Association website the following day.