The Daily Gamecock

Student senate passes 3 pieces of legislation, refers 3 others to committees

USC's student senate passed three pieces of legislation and referred three others to various committees at its weekly meeting on Wednesday.

The pieces of legislation passed were a recommendation to name the press box at Founder's Park "The Tommy Moody Press Box" and a recommendation to simplify the process of obtaining green certification for student organization finance requests.

The third piece of legislation merged three bills into one through an omnibus vote, meaning when the separate pieces of legislation came up for a vote, senators voted on them together as one. These pieces of legislation, all introduced by senator Karthik Rangavajhula, were recommendations to enhance environmental sustainability and accountability in laboratories across campus by encouraging energy conservation, implementing recycling facilities and raising awareness of their environmental impact.

The first piece of the omnibus, SBL11557, was a recommendation to foster energy conservation awareness in laboratory settings through the use of labels. Senator Jackson Hensley, who spoke on the bill on behalf of Rangavajhula, said it is aimed to keep students conscious of the environmental impact they have while working in laboratories.

"The labels on those laboratory equipment — (Rangavajhula) had shown studies that they did make a difference in the emissions that were taken out by those laboratory equipment," Hensley said. "People are conscious of their actions, and (if) it's right there beside whatever they're using, they're going to save more energy and just be more conscious of that."

The second piece of the omnibus, SBL11558, was a recommendation to implement appropriate recycling facilities in laboratory settings that lack them.

"A lot of the products that are used in laboratories are recyclable, but the facilities aren't all necessarily always there," Hensley said.

The third piece of the omnibus, SBL11559, was a general recommendation to promote laboratory accountability and keep the university mindful of its laboratories' environmental impact, Hensley said.

The three pieces of legislation passed as one after a unanimous voice vote.

Additionally, SBL11555, which was introduced by senator Chandler Caulder, was a recommendation to name the press box at Founder's Park "The Tommy Moody Press Box." Tommy Moody joined "107.5 the Game” as a broadcaster for USC's baseball team in 2000 and continued until his passing in 2023. He was a walk-on baseball player in 1970 before suffering a career injury his sophomore year.

"(Tommy Moody) was the voice of Gamecock Baseball for 23 years," Caulder said. "He played baseball for here. He went here. He was doing a lot of work for alumni. He did a lot of work for athletics, and of course, as a kid, I actually listened to him whenever I listened to baseball games. Back home in Camden, I would hear his voice. You give this much effort and this much love to this university. You deserve your name on a press box."

The legislation unanimously passed after a voice vote.

The other piece of legislation, SBL11560, which was introduced by senators Rangavajhula and Mia LaPinta, was a recommendation to simplify the green certification process for student organization finance requests. LaPinta said this is just a recommendation because they are still in the process of slowly introducing it to people, as few are familiar with green certification aside from the green certification team themselves.

"We met with the finance committee and talked to them about potentially providing a link for everybody who is requesting finances for any organizations they are apart of," LaPinta said. "It says 'Do you want to green certify? Here's the link to green certify. There's the form you have to fill out.'"

Currently, in order for a student organization to become green certified, it must undergo a five-step process. This process involves appointing an office coordinator, completing a training session, signing a pledge, implementing sustainable practices while undergoing evaluation and finally becoming certified by the Green Office Team. Upon successful verification, organizations receive official certification, including an award, website acknowledgment and digital logos for display.

The legislation passed unanimously after a voice vote.

The three pieces of legislation that were referred to committees included a bill to specify the notice and enforcement of the absence policy, a recommendation to host a "white out" themed game during the 2024 football season and a recommendation to enhance the transfer student experience by expanding the end-of-orientation survey to all orientation participants by email.

Though the 2024 Student Government election season is in full swing, the last senate session will not take place until March 13, which is the Wednesday before the inauguration of the next student body president.