SA Senate finishes up spring semester

By Megan Knowles

After passing final resolutions and announcing next year’s executive staff, the Student Association Senate ended its spring term Sunday evening.

Among several issues, SA President-elect Paul Middleton introduced the SA advisers for next year and student Regent James Mertes was not named as next year’s Regent. Sen. John Butler was appointed to the position.

After the announcement regarding the Regent position, Mertes’ final written report to the senate was distributed. Mertes stated that he felt “student projects will be undermined by Middleton’s failure to appoint staff members on the basis of merit and experience.”

Middleton used Mertes’ report as an example of why Mertes should not serve on his staff. However, Butler, his replacement, said Mertes was a “fine, outstanding Regent,” but they went through the same interviewing process and he was as qualified for the Regent position as Mertes was when he was appointed.

In other business, SA Senate Speaker Michael Starzec named senators who have had excessive absences. A motion to allow delinquent senators to explain their absences was tabled.

The senate also passed a resolution to investigate the Northern Star. The resolution calls for a committee comprised of student leaders and Northern Star employees to investigate allegations. The findings will be presented to the SA Senate and NIU President John La Tourette after completion of the investigation. The committee will begin meeting this week.

Also, SA President Preston Came suggested the appointment of Kimberly Sullivan to the Student Judicial Advisory Board. The Senate approved Came’s replacement.

In other business, Mertes said he is still working on the contractual agreement between the university and attorneys in Students’ Legal Assistance. Mertes is pushing for a three-year contract, rather than one-year contract.