Jordan Paul inaugurated as new MSA president

The Senate hopes to decrease student fees.
Missouri Students Association President Jordan Paul jokes with Director of Student Services Ryan Senciboy after an MSA Senate meeting Wednesday in Memorial Union. Paul was sworn in as the new MSA president at the start of the meeting.

Jordan Paul and Colleen Hoffmann were officially sworn in as the Missouri Students Association president and vice president Wednesday night at an MSA Senate meeting.

Although Paul's ceremonial inauguration will take place Jan. 30, the oath given by MSA Chief Justice Jonathon Sandhu formally gave Paul the position of acting president.

"Although today marks my first day, officially, as MSA president, I've been carrying out the duties of the position for a few weeks now," Paul said. "We've got our cabinet together and now we're just preparing for the inaugural ceremony itself."

The Senate also discussed their recommendation to the administration to decrease student fees, a topic resurfacing from Senate meetings last semester. Senate Speaker Jonathan Mays said MSA recommended a decrease of either $1.65 or $0.65, depending on whether 60 percent of students vote in favor of a $1 sustainability fee during the campus-wide referendum Feb. 9 through 11.

"We have not seen a decrease in the student activities fee since 1978, so this is a trend we're hoping to finally reverse," Mays said. "Stopping the increase in the student activity fee will be a major accomplishment." The Senate also passed an act to assign the MSA International Programming Committee chair to a permanent seat on the Missouri International Student Council. Although the two groups worked together in the past, Mays said the act is meant to ensure future collaboration between the two.

"We want to do anything we can to help the events that MISC or MSA's International Programming Committee plan succeed," Mays said. "They are successful because of the collaboration and we want to make sure that continues."

The Senate also confirmed junior Paul Whiteside as the new Student Affairs Committee chairman. Whiteside previously served as the committee's secretary and has spent a year-and-a-half on the committee total.

"People don't listen to a secretary as much as they listen to a chairman, and this committee needs leadership," Whiteside said. "The committee worked very effectively under former Chairwoman Erin Moran and I'd just like to carry on her tradition of excellence."

In the Senate's open forum, Senator Josh Travis proposed a complete restructuring of MSA's Senate to "more effectively represent MU students." Travis proposed moving to a bi-cameral legislature that would lengthen the process of passing an act or amending bylaws.

"I do believe we move a little too hastily in some of our actions," Travis said. "I just hope you (the Senate) will consider the thought of a bi-cameral legislature."

Travis also quoted President Barack Obama's inaugural address and said the question was not how big or small our government should be.

"The question should be 'does our government work?'" he said.

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