Students may have a voice on housing issues at the city level if a new student government-proposed committee comes to fruition.
The Associated Students of Madison Student Council made proposals for its fall initiatives in its last meeting of the semester Wednesday, including the creation of a student housing subcommittee.
The city currently has a Housing Committee below the City Council level. The Housing Committee has several subcommittees already in place, and students are not represented on any of them.
The student committee, proposed by Vice Chair Adam Johnson, would be another one of those subcommittees.
“It’s important it would be a subcommittee of this housing committee because then our students can bring forth legislation into this [system], and that legislation has a chance to go up into the city council level and become law,” Johnson said.
The University of Wisconsin would have to have a seat on the student subcommittee because they house so many students in the dorms, Johnson said. He said he has talked to Dean of Students Lori Berquam and she expressed interest in the idea.
The student government also appointed leadership and members to several committees during their meeting.
Representative Katy Ziebell was appointed chair of the Student Activity Governing Board and was the only candidate running. Ziebell was the chair last session as well.
Ziebell said she felt like she left her job unfinished because she only had five months of work.
Rep. Matt Beemsterboer was appointed chair of the Finance committee. He was also unopposed and was chair last session.
Beemsterboer said it was a simple decision for him to run for chair again this year.
“My reasoning for doing this is kind of simple,” Beemsterboer said. “I am going to be here next year, I am going to be taking an easy course load next year and I enjoyed doing it this year, and so I’d like to continue doing it.”
Student Council also approved new member appointments to other committees.
ASM approved the Nominations Board’s recommendations for the Student Service Finance Committee. The recommendations included Eric Ballecer, Jair Alvarez, Chase Wilson, Jason Smathers — current editor-in-chief of The Badger Herald — and Tommy Hughes.
Nominations Board Chair Andrea Nichols said it was a strong pool of applicants who were really qualified to serve on SSFC.
The Nominations Board recommendations for the Finance Committee were also passed, with the only objection being one of the candidate’s names was spelled wrong.
The recommendations included Boan Sinanipar, Zhizhong Pang, Florence Escho, Chen Zhao and Kaihua Chen.
Johnson also said he hopes to have the External Affairs Committee play a bigger role next session.
External Affairs was an informal committee created last year, however, Johnson said they only once met last session.
“I have planned on having External Affairs be sort of a guiding post. I want to have a lot of individual outreach campaigns be run through committees and then have External Affairs be a coordinating body,” Johnson said.