SA approves permanent president pro tempore

By Greg Rivara

The occasional “chaos” found in the Student Association is no longer a concern for SA Vice President and acting president pro tempore Gregg Bliss since the senate selected a permenant pro tempore.

Sunday night the SA approved the Internal Affairs committee’s recommendation of NIU senior Jamie Pennington as president pro tempore. Pennington was approved for the position after receiving the necessary two-thirds vote of the senate.

The SA Constitution states the pro tempore is appointed to a one-year term and is eligible for re-appointment. The pro tempore may be removed by a majority vote of the senate. Pro tempore duties include chairing the SA meetings and forwarding SA actions to the executive board. The pro tempore does not have a vote or veto power, and cannot be a member of the executive board or the senate.

The SA vice president will preside over the meetings if the pro tempore is absent.

Pennington said the pro tempore position primarily deals with the “clarification and expediency” of Robert’s Rules of Order and the SA operating procedures.

Pennington attended senate meetings prior to his appointment and said only some items during the various meetings he attended needed clarifying.

Bliss did a good job as pro tempore during the selection process, Pennington said.

Bliss said acting as vice president and pro tempore was difficult because he could not express his ideas as freely as he wished because of the nature of the pro tempore position.

“It was an interesting experience in the area of chaos control,” he said.

Although the SA Constitution calls for the pro tempore selection at the second SA meeting (Oct. 2), the selection process was pushed back because of a lack of applicants, Bliss said. The IAC made its recommendation from five applicants.

Bliss said the IAC recommended Pennington because his poise, character and intelligence will help him fulfill the pro tempore duties.

Pennington said his experience in founding the NIU Chess Club and serving as the club’s president during his freshman year and the club’s secretary/treasurer his sophomore year will help with the pro tempore duties.

Pennington also has been a member of the Young Democrats for four years and is the group’s first vice chairman. Pennington was a member of the Student Committee on Political Action during the 1986-87 school year, and has been associated with the SA for the past three years.

The nature of the pro tempore position will eliminate any possible conflict of interest, Pennington said. The pro tempore does not speak on the issues debated by the senate, he said.

Pennington is a political science major from Stillman Valley, Il.