People do not expect their governing bodies to be models of efficiency, but the people do expect government to get things done.
Unfortunately, things are not getting done – at least not in a timely manner. The reason that things have been slow to get done does not appear to be because our elected officials have been hashing out the bitter details of bills and propositions.
The real reason seems to be that personal and political tiffs are getting in the way of the political process. This leaves government in dire need of civility.
Take USUAA into consideration. They are a relatively small as governing bodies go, with 23 members. Assuming these 23 people are concerned and heavily involved members of UAA, it would only make sense that they would be able to unite under a common goal – a goal of making UAA a better place for students.
This common goal, however, does not appear to unite UAA’s student government. In light of recent events, they give the impression that they are unequivocally divided.
For those that do not know, a University Police officer was asked to attend USUAA’s Feb. 5 meeting by a senator who felt like he was being harassed by other members of the delegation.
An officer was required to quell harassment?
That really does not bode well with anybody. Apparently the alleged harassers are a small, but very vocal, group. The tension between the two groups of senators has brought work to a standstill in student government.
Things are slowly coming around in USUAA, but it brings into question the reason that the going is slow in other legislative bodies. Is it because officials are feuding with each other? Or is it because they really are working out the small details to make the legislation they pass as solid as possible?
Things like this will happen, it is human nature and people will not always get along. But, it is necessary for government officials to put these differences aside and do what the people elected them to do.
Since USUAA is such a small and hyper-local government, it has the potential to accomplish a lot that could make UAA an even better place to go to school.
Maybe something that would make USUAA a truly student-representative government is student-input from non-members.
Students need to sit in on USUAA meetings to voice their opinions and find out about what exactly USUAA does. Students have a general lack of knowledge about what happens in USUAA and how they manage a large amount of student fees.
It is only fair for students and those that represent them to have more input into their decisions.
USUAA also needs to publicize elections further in advance. It is not uncommon for students to be unaware of elections until booths appear around the campus.
There will never be a shortage of issues for governing bodies to address, and the most effective way is with input from those whose lives are affected by their decisions.