On Sunday night, February 26, the Associated Students of Claremont McKenna College Executive Board rejected all but three stipend adjustments for ASCMC officials.
In a vote last week, the ASCMC Senate approved a number of stipend changes for most members of the Executive Board. The proposal then went before the Executive Board for a vote yesterday evening.
The Executive Board only voted on and approved three stipend adjustments from the Senate proposal. The proposal to increase the Social Activities Chair (SAC) yearly stipend by $500 passed with Clare Riva ’13 and Connor Barclay ’13 voting against it. Riva and Barclay were also the only two voting members to reject the second proposal: a retroactive increase of $600 for the Forum Editor-in-Chief yearly stipend. All voting members voted in favor of a $100 decrease in the yearly stipend of the Student Security Officer beginning next term.
All constitutional amendments require a two-thirds majority from the Executive Board for passage. Voting members on the Executive Board include the ASCMC President Jessica Mao, Vice President Aditya Pai, the Chief Financial Officer Lacey McLean, Campus Organizations Chair Ed La Cava, Executive Secretary Stephanie Haft, SAC Will Brown, Dorm Affairs Chair Clare Riva, Student Life Council Chair Alexandra Cooke, Freshman Class President Demetrius Lalanne, Sophomore Class President Gavin Landgraf, Junior Class President Connor Barclay, and Senior Class President Mary Doyle.
Nine members voted in the proceedings tonight. Lacey McLean ’12 and Gavin Landgraf ’14–both voting members of the Executive Board–were not present at the vote.
Referring to the three non-ASCMC students in attendance at last night’s stipend vote, President Mao said, “I really appreciated having students come to the meeting.” She added that she also valued having students email her their concerns and voicing them at ‘Mao Pow Wow,’ a weekly open forum hosted by Mao. “I think the officers gave considerable thought to the students’ input,” noted Mao.
Mao hopes the discussion will continue and address in further detail the ASCMC President’s $14,000 yearly stipend, which covers room and board at the college. She continued saying, “The big-picture conclusion that came out of the discussion tonight is that our stipends run on a broken system that needs to be reformed. It can’t be rushed, but it has to be done.”
All three proposals were part of the earlier group of stipend adjustments. Due to procedural ambiguity, Senate must reconsider the stipends tomorrow, Monday, February 27 before they take effect. Last Monday, February 20, Senate voted to amend the constitution to accept all proposed stipend changes with only one dorm–Claremont Hall–abstaining. It is unclear to ASCMC officials whether Senate adopted the stipends as one package or if it approved the stipends as individual proposals but used a procedural maneuver to vote on each individual package in one vote.
If Senate adopted the stipends as one package, Senate must treat the action by the Executive Board as a new proposal and vote again on the three stipend increases. To approve the proposal, two-thirds of all dorms, regardless of the number of senators voting must vote in favor of the motion. If approved by Senate, the changes will be implemented immediately and require no further voting on the part of Executive Board members.
If the Senate intended to pass the measure as individual pieces but voted once for the sake of ease and time, then the proposals would take effect immediately.
Update on February 27 at 10:57pm: Senate clarified the procedural ambiguity stating it voted in favor of all of the stipends individually. The three stipend proposals passed by the Executive Board are now in the ASCMC Constitution.