In a letter dated Nov. 9, Ryan Barr, the parliamentarian for Miami University’s Associated Student Government (ASG), resigned from his position.
Barr cited “a combination of personal and professional factors” as the reason for his resignation, which is effective immediately. ASG will elect a new parliamentarian at its Nov. 17 meeting, and off-campus senator Omar Elghazawi will hold position temporarily until the election occurs.
This was ASG’s second resignation of the semester. Megan Hess, secretary for off-campus affairs, resigned from her position on Oct. 25.
At its Nov. 10 meeting, ASG held a special election to replace Hess. Two off-campus senators, Emily McClary and Gus Lake, ran for the position.
McClary, who served on ASG’s off-campus affairs committee this semester, said she would try to improve sustainability uptown and help local businesses attract more student customers if elected.
Lake said he felt qualified for the position because he grew up in Oxford, so he would be able to appeal to both Miami students and Oxford community members. He also said he’d work on improving local businesses’ compliance with COVID-19 safety regulations.
ASG elected McClary to the position, and she was sworn in at the end of the meeting.
ASG also passed four pieces of legislation — two bills and two resolutions — during the meeting. All of them were passed unanimously and without much debate.
The first bill, authored by off-campus senators Lake, Jonathon Hudak and Mathias Adjei, changed the section of ASG’s bylaws pertaining to the Student/Community Relations Commission (SCRC).
The SCRC brings Miami students and Oxford residents together to discuss matters of student-community relations. The commission recently changed its policy to require that one of its student members be an international student, so this bill amended ASG’s bylaws to reflect that change.
The second bill, authored by McClary, amended several sections of ASG’s bylaws relating to the funding and audit committee. According to McClary and Dan Bosworth, secretary of the treasury, these changes were being made so that ASG’s bylaws accurately reflect the current practices of the committee.
Next, ASG passed a resolution in support of the President’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) task force’s recommendations.
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The DEI task force presented a series of recommendations to President Greg Crawford in September, though the group was the subject of controversy over the summer when 15 student members resigned in July.
Vada Stephens, who wrote the resolution, was one of the students who resigned from the DEI task force. He said he and the other students who resigned formed their own set of recommendations but never released them because they closely mirrored those given by the task force.
“The realization that our university is in need of a strong and unified working relationship between students and administration, I believe, is a vital component in effectively implementing and enabling transformative change here at Miami University,” Stephens said.
To ensure student voices continue to be heard as the recommendations are implemented, ASG’s secretary for diversity and inclusion, Brandon Small, will work closely with the task force to provide student feedback, according to the resolution.
Finally, ASG passed a second resolution, authored by College of Arts and Science (CAS) academic senator Lauren Doepke, supporting the university continuing to provide funding for the Institute for Food, which is currently in danger of shutting down due to lack of funding.
According to the resolution, the institute is self-sufficient aside from two salaried positions, which are funded by CAS. The resolution would not require the university to provide any additional funding other than for those two positions. It would also require ASG to take steps to improve the farm’s visibility on campus.
The resolution will now be presented to University Senate for final approval.