Montana State University

Associated Students of MSU Senate

SUB Room 235

January 24, 2019


Minutes called to order at 6:02pm by Senate Speaker, Karl Swanson.

Minutes recorded by Senate Secretary, Tiga Ward.

Roll Call

Excused: Abbot


Approval of Minutes

Motioned, Approved


Admin Reports

President - Taylor Blossom

Capital day is Feb 12, need to officially sign up and Marianne sent out the link via email. Was in Helena, had a meeting regarding Romney Hall. Spring MSU debut has been going well and look to have a finance board proposal in the next week or two.


Director of Operations - Marianne Brough

Capital day is Feb 12 and is an all-day gig, this is active participation and is a really great thing. The bus will be filled with others so sign up by Friday before everyone else. There is a signup sheet for the involvement fair and is a good way to interact with students and to get engaged. Would be great to have us there. Still have finance board positions available and will close next Thursday. There have been questions about the Romney space for clubs and there is a plan that she emailed with the talking points. It is only a rough plan and is not the final plan, would be good to get a listening group to solve the problems some of the groups might be facing with the possible change. Just sent a DSR committee to come help. One we should apply, two even if we apply we can still come and help - will give an insight. Share that information. Breaks away still has spots available, is $400 a trip covers it all.


Business Manager - Andy Turner

Spent last week training the new elections director, sent out the email for the presentation last week, and please talk to liaison directors.


Chief Justice – Mac Gwinner

His team is meeting with the election director and don’t have much going on other than that. Have has some more justice applications coming in.



Senate Speaker - Karl Swenson

Have a couple committees that need people due to meeting conflicts and a new committee. Curriculum committee (every other Tuesday 2-3p) and Football Operation Building Design committee (Dalvit is interested). Senate openings till 5pm Wednesday one for Nursing and 4 for at large. Have the Finance board positions closing at 5pm Thursday. Had emailed with a small edit to bill 3, just changing two words to match the bylaws.


Pro Tempore - Ambika Murali

Got the shirts in today and were printed instead which ended up costing less.


Senate Reports

Dalvit, talked about the arts and architecture program to be more sustainable and are looking to get different bins. There are some students mad about the ice and snow, so she got in contact with the facility director and if interested to help let her know, looking for solutions. Was talking to some students in their Honors seminar and a few are working on how to save stuff thrown out from the dorms and want to get them connected.


Johnson, was in the office when the snow complaints occurred and wants to help. Had a planning council meeting and now all the colleges are creating their sustainability plan and they are creating docs to help them.


Mulvaney, posted on FB and his big project is working on reducing and reusing moving waste. Is working with the office of sustainably to try to get storage. Talked to Marianne and might be secured in renting to mobile pods to store items that way. Now they just need to get people on board and will be working to connect with other interested parties. Will continue to update as it goes.


Halstad, met with the student faculty relations committee, they are working on the policy. Want to have someone faculty and students can go to, to get advice and understanding. Next task is to where to put that sort of person or to have a resource for them to reach out to. Please give her suggestions and she will be asking around the office.


Killian, this week met with arts and exhibits director, are going to permanently add the extra money to the budget. Last semester wanted to get new tables and such in Leon Johnson and those labs see students from over 80 different departments. Wants to increase chairs but to use less space. Montana Wilderness asking for a trail funding and asked for an increase in registration fees and might be writing a resolution for it


Elias met with the American Indian Hall Council about the ground blessing ceremony. This is going to overlap with the Powwow.


Unfinished Business


2019-B-1 ASMSU Fund Use in Campaigns

Motion, Seconded


Murali, for consistency sake had to make some adjustments. Heard a concern whether this is the right place to put this in and it is.


Killian, Is there a grey area about the EPPM. Gwinner, it is a grey area. Taylor, part should state “except or allowed in… and in the bylaws”. Killian, might be against the bill, especially the part about the ballot measures, needs to have an opinion and should be able to spend our funds on it. Wants to represent the students and feels it should be included. Could allow us to push ballot measure they we think are beneficial.


Pelkie, what will it affect? Killian, will affect the ballot measures and funding.


Rienhardt, spent money to get out the vote when asking about the 6-mill. Will we not be able to tell students to vote? Murali, is to ask students where they stand, we are there to get students informed but not to take a stand or to take sides. R- wants to encourage students and feels she might tell students to vote against so is going to vote no.


Dalvit, instead of “vote for” the climbing wall would be “vote on” the climbing wall.


Branch, one of the important things is that we are talking about spending students money without asking what the students want. Feels we shouldn’t be telling them how to vote when we will be spending their money. This is a situation for students to have their own voice, wants an amendment to clarify the grey area and that we shouldn’t spend their money to tell them our opinion.


Mulvaney, say we are tabling for a ballot measure and one of the students asks for our thoughts or opinion. Is that a grey area about ASMSU time and what should one do? Gwinner, it would feel that you would have to say you cannot share your opinion. Probably wouldn’t get in trouble but if did would have to run against. Would just have to say I cannot tell you. M- Is a situation he would be uncomfortable with as we are out there to educate people.


Johnson, is also uncomfortable with that. Agrees we are out there to educate but to not tell people how to vote.


Elias, not sure this is a good idea because you want to hear what the students have to say and is not okay as we are here to have a stance.


Halstad, feels we should say “my stance is with my constituents and not here for my personal opinion”.


Kothe, think about why we are here and our need to get an unbiased opinion.


Hall, Can time be removed? Taylor, limits those to use ASMSU time to campaign for themselves. Schmitz, has there been a ruling about a difference between ASMSU hours and volunteering. Taylor, still feels like ASMSU time as you are serving as a senator. Likes the intent of the bill and you are finding issues and we can work on the wording. The underling goal is to get the best version of feed from students but agrees with what everyone is saying. Maybe should table to further discuss. Hall, wants to move to table.


Hall Moves to Table Until 2 weeks from now, Feb 7th. Seconded.


Tabling Discussion:

Murali, if more time is what is needed then she is for it. Is open to make the amendments and if discussed should go quick.


Branch, is against and thinks we should get it figured out now.


Mulvaney, feels we should allow the other senators the time to talk. Also if our discussion is in regards to a long meeting then that is absurd, that is what we are here for.


Horton, Moves to vote on the motion. Seconded. 13-4, Passed.

Vote to postpone till 7th: 5-11, Failed.


Main Discussion:

Murali, seems as if we want to make amendments and wants to hear those.

Moved, Seconded. To extent the limits of debate to 4 times. Passes.


Dalvit, echos senator Hall, we are here to listen to the students and feels we can educate without stating our direct opinion. Voting yes.


Pelkie, comes down to how we should be representing and feels he should be allowed to voice his opinions as that is part of why he feels he was elected.


Schmitz, shouldn’t be telling them what to think and if it does fail just add it into a ballot measure. Should add in that personal beliefs can be said but that is not why we are here and it is about the students.


Branch, wants to amend strike line 15 and insert “defined in the ASMSU by-laws”. Seconded.


Amendment Discussion:

Branch, had a brief discussion Chief of justice feels it should clear up some of the grey areas.


Reinhardt, what grey area would it clear? Gwinner, where the EPPM falls below the by-laws so we don’t follow it and must follow their campaign.


Mulvaney, saying it clears up some but not about time and tabling.


Lyon, moves to previous question. Seconded. 12-3, Passed.

Vote on amendment, Passes.


Main Discussion:

Branch, feels like the hesitancy is semantical. This bill addresses bigger issues and allows us to get an unbiased, clean vote. When students can vote it is up to them on how they vote.


Killian, is still against the bill. The grey areas are still to much and cannot change any ballot measures in here. The students elect us to represent them and knowing we are here to represent them. Doesn’t feel comfortable, and it is our job to represent students and includes how we feel on issues.


Mulvaney, the larger issues are taken care of by this bill and that there is more reality to this then hypotheticals. Was clear about how to get info out and students want to know how their senators feel and has been in a situation where it has happened. Feels it would be an uncomfortable situation. Thinks Schmitz direction is good but doesn’t know how we would establish personal opinion in it. Schmitz, would be to put a DA and that a statement of personal opinion should not be construed as ASMSU time. M- does it solve problems? Gwinner- does clear it up for him. Taylor- thinks it could works, does have concern. M-this is about a bigger issue but could solve this small one.


Pelkie, is ASMSU time defined in the by-laws? Gwinner- No, they have never had to deal with this before. P-could add a definition of time such as office hours or paid hours, could solve.


Dalvit, felt it was already there that her opinion should not be included and if they need her opinion to decided then it is not their genuine opinion.


Murali, we are giving funds to candidates, but it is despite what their stands are. Time could be defined elsewhere in the by-laws. Feels that one should be able to express personal opinions and thinks we should allow the amendment that Schmitz was suggesting.


Kothe, seems like the issue is with time. The issue with giving opinions only matters if using funds. The problem is with time and should just get rid of it.


Schmitz, would like to amend adding in section DA: “a statement of personal opinion shall not be construed as a use of ASMSU time (while promoting for a candidate or ballot measure)”. Seconded.


Amendment Discussion:

Schmitz, feels it would clear up the issue.


Lyon, thinks it is a good compromise.


Branch, after reading enjoys the intent but feels the parenthesis should be taken off. Taylor, this is so someone cannot get inform of an ASMSU event and say their voting opinion. B-Thinks it’s a good step in clarifying but thinks we should nail down the proper verbiage.


Elias, likes the amendment and that it clears things up.


Amendment Vote, Passes.


Main Discussion:

Lyon, moves to previous question, Seconded. Failed.


Killian, appreciates the amendment if it passes but still against.


Roll Call Vote: 15-2, Approved.


2019-B-2 Club Sports Funding Board

Motioned, Seconded.


Murali, club sports is funded by ASMSU but they are able to do as they wish. There is no part about it in the bylaws and this gives some control of where that money is going.


Johnson, funding board does exist? Murali, yes but not in the bylaws. It’s in there that it exists but there is not a section about how it should run.


Roll Call Vote: 17-0, Approved.





2019-R-1 24 Hour Response Legislative Committee

Motioned, Seconded.


Killian, sent out some amendments, would like to have those added. Moves to amend, Seconded.


Amend Discussion:

Schmitz, clarification. Killian, There was an issue in the past. 


Branch, likes the idea of the committee and had some confusion about the amendments. In what he heard there was going to be two different groups.  Are we combining those groups and the 24 meets as needed? Killian- would give them power to make the quick decisions, moved them together and doesn’t know if should add a apart about meeting. Taylor, likes not having a regular standing meeting as they won’t have much to do.


Branch, thinks that having a committee that meets to look over legislation but doesn’t feel it should be under the 24/hr part. Would just like to strike the part about a weekly meeting.


Killian, feels if they are two separate committees information could be lost.


Schmitz, In the second resolve what if the senate thinks the action isn’t justified? Killian- could call a special meeting.


Branch, agrees with Killian and now feels they should be hand in hand,


Murali, thoughts on having one committee? Taylor, would be fine with me. M-should have as one.


Amend Vote: Passes.


Main Discussion:

Johnson, likes the whole idea. Knows Richard was not elected but feels he would be a good fit to sit on the committee. Amendments should add “…3 senators appointed by senate and chaired by ASMSU Political Action Director, a non-voting member”. Seconded.


Amend Discussion:

Elias, feels it is a great idea but should ask him first. Killian, has discussed and he is down for it.


Amendment, Passes


Main Discussion:

Murali, would like to amend the “s” on Senate to be capitalized “S” for consistency sake. Seconded.

Amendment Vote, Passed.


Roll Call Vote:14-1, Approved.


New Business


2019-B-3 Finance Board Appointment



24 Hour Legislative Committee

Nominations: Senators Killian, Johnson, Reinhardt

Killian moves to approve the nominated parties, Seconded.


Ballot Vote: Killian-13, Johnson/Reinhardt-12


2019-R-2 Renaming of the Recreation Building

Sponsors: Senators Elias, Schmitz, Reiman, Reinhardt, Lyon

Motioned Seconded. Passed


Senate Announcements

Johnson, there is a poetry open mic night as Wild Joes coffee spot, all topics welcome and free to the public. Taylor, Drag show is on Saturday.


Mulvaney, who has signed up for the Dance marathon and would love to see more of senate there. This is the first dance marathon in Montana and is a huge event! Could create a Senate team. Is a 6-hr event a mix between active and passive hours. Active hours-dancing and passive hours-listening to families speak. Would love to answer questions or to chat.


Murali, needs to meet with engineering people.


Killian, is having a jazz concert and would like to get more of a celebration for that. Found out a member of the school of music committed suicide and they held his memorial Monday. Is here for anyone if they want to talk.


Halstad, floor to Madi.


Madi, the Summit is next week! Is a super cool event and is having students that will be sharing. Should show up and show support starts at 7:30, doors open at 7pm.


Swenson needs office hours!


Meeting adjourned by Senator Murali.





Killian’s amendments sent in email for 2019-R-1 24 Hour Response Legislative Committee.


’24-Hour Response Legislative Committee’ (24 Hour RLC)


Resolved, That the 24 Hour RLC meets weekly to find legislation that might affect students and recommend action to Senate; and,

Resolved,That the 24 Hour RLC has authority to issue temporary legislative directives on issues of immediate urgency to the ASMSU lobbyist as long as they update Senate on why such action is justified; and,

Resolved,That 24 Hour RLC directives stand until they can be brought up as new business at the following meeting of the senate; and,