SGA adds to judicial branch

The Student Government Association passed two bills that will be effective immediately regarding the newly added judicial branch.

Bill 17-03 establishes the rules of the student court meetings and hearings. Bill 17-04 establishes the definition of the Judicial Branch Clerk. Senator Will Middleton proposed Bill 17-03, and Senator Sam Mashburn proposed bill 17-04.

Bill 17-03 passed, 18-3.

Bill 17-04 passed, 16-4.

The judicial branch clerk shall be responsible for keeping record of all judicial hearings and maintain judicial records, according to bill 17-04.

Chief Justice, Chloe Brownell, will appoint the judicial clerk, according to the bill.

“Judicial clerk will act as an SGA staff member and be preforming a reporting role,” Mashburn said. “The clerk will serve for a one-year term and may repeat terms if appointed. The clerk must be a student of the university and have a GPA of 2.25.”

The bill states if the clerk obtains more than three absences, the judicial advisor will dismiss them from the court room. If this occurs, the Chief Justice will appoint a temporary clerk. The temporary clerk may not serve on any other branch of SGA; however, it can be any UNA student who obtains a 2.25 GPA.

“I will appoint a judicial branch clerk by the end of April, so that, if they’re currently on SGA, they do not have to step down with only one week of current SGA meetings,” said Chief Justice Brownell.

The judicial branch will start taking cases as soon as the Clerk is appointed. This branch will be overseeing SGA concerns, Registered Student Organization controversies, and concerns with University administration, Brownell said.

Middleton proposed Bill 17-03 to add a section for Student Court Meetings and Hearings to the SGA Code of Laws. This section is necessary for the adding of the judicial branch. Bill 17-03: Chapter 901 lays out the rules of the student court meetings and hearings, of the judicial branch.

“The Student Court Hearings should be presented in front of all justices unless there is an established conflict of interest,” according to Chapter 901.

Senator Mashburn and SGA President-elect Hugo Dante proposed to add an amendment to the bill, in response to this “conflict of interest” portion of the bill 17-03: Chapter 901. The added amendments will fall under 901.1.1, 901.1.2, and 901.1.3.

Mashburn said 901.1.1 was added to allow the Rules Committee to determine what the next step would be, if any justice has a conflict of interest within each case.

“If the delegate is unsatisfied with the response from the Rules Committee, then they could appeal to the Senate (901.1.2), and then to the Judicial advisor (901.1.3),” Mashburn said.

Amendments 901.1.1, 901.1.2, and 901.1.3 passed with the bill.