UC Votes To Table SEC Discussion

Four-hour meeting ends without preliminary vote on proposed body

The Undergraduate Council (UC) voted at last night’s marathon meeting to extend debate and push back a vote on a constitutional amendment that would create an independent body to coordinate social events.

The amendment—introduced at last week’s meeting—would dissolve the Campus Life Committee (CLC) and replace it with a directly-elected Social Events Committee (SEC) that would be charged with planning campus-wide social events but would not be part of the UC.

After a meeting that lasted for over four hours, several members proposed to extend debate until next week’s meeting.

“We are definitely not in a place to discuss this bill,” said UC member Jeffrey D. Wilf ’07, who is also a Crimson editor.

The UC constitution calls for the constitutional amendment process to span three meetings. The amendment must be introduced at the first meeting, amended and put up for a preliminary vote at the second meeting, and subjected to a final vote at a third meeting.

Last night was initially slated to be the second meeting in the process—with a preliminary vote—before debate was extended by a vote of 22-19, pushing voting back until next week’s scheduled UC meeting on Monday, Nov. 28.

Several changes were adopted to the constitutional amendment last night.

One amendment that passed charged the SEC—unlike the CLC—to foster a relationship with University Hall and to work closely with the Campus Life Fellow.

“We envision the role of the Campus Life Fellow as a guide,” said Undergraduate Council President Matthew J. Glazer ’06. “The language isn’t as strong as it should be. This person should be a logistical guide.”

UC Vice President Clay T. Capp ’06 agreed with this assessment.

In another change to the amendment, the chair of the SEC will sit on the Committee on College Life.

“The administration of the college and the UC realize the current CLC is not capable of providing the best programming for the campus,” Glazer said.

But he added that the College and the UC aren’t entirely on the same page about a new social planning board.

“There are certain things that the university disagrees with,” Glazer said. “The university believes that the budget should be set by the administration. There are certain details we fundamentally disagree about.”

Two failed amendments hinted at disagreement within the UC that may spill out in the preliminary vote next week.

One proposed amendment attempted to preserve the current size of the council, creating a position of member-at-large to replace representatives who had served on CLC. Another amendment proposed direct elections to CLC instead of an independent SEC.

Despite the extended debate, Glazer said he remains optimistic that the amendment will pass.

“This is a very big step we are trying to take,” said Glazer. “Debate is focusing on the proposal, not the process.”

—Staff writer Alexander D. Blankfein can be reached at ablankf@fas.harvard.edu