Boca House elects new positions, swears in representatives

For the first meeting of the semester, eight representatives ran for legislative positions.

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Boca House elects new positions, swears in representatives

House of Representatives members being sworn in at the first meeting of the semester. Photo by Israel Fontoura

House of Representatives members being sworn in at the first meeting of the semester. Photo by Israel Fontoura

House of Representatives members being sworn in at the first meeting of the semester. Photo by Israel Fontoura

House of Representatives members being sworn in at the first meeting of the semester. Photo by Israel Fontoura

Israel Fontoura, News Editor

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At the first Student Government House of Representatives meeting of the semester Friday, the House met with its newly-elected body and elected the House speaker, pro-tempore, and Campus Budget Allocation Committee (CBAC) chair. 

Boca Governor Alex Zand presided over the meeting and for three hours, the 29 representatives voted for the legislative positions.

Here’s an overview of the House speaker’s, pro-tempore’s and CBAC chair’s duties according to the SG constitution:

  • The House speaker presides over all meetings and ensures that members maintain order. 
  • The Speaker pro-tempore aids the House Speaker and acts in place of their absence.
  • The CBAC chair oversees the hearing, amendments, and request approvals for the annual fiscal budget for Boca Raton Student Government and its Programs.

Rep. Steven Robinson, who served as former pro-tempore, was elected House speaker by a vote of 18-7. Also in the running was Rep. Jerry Lazarre, Rep. Javier Bravo, and Rep. Steven Westervelt. 

Robinson explained as a representative, one of his most pressing concerns is the “inconvenience” of the Wimberly library Owl Card swipe policy. The policy enacted this semester requires students to swipe both in and out of the library, which sometimes creates long lines to enter.

 “The reality is that the policy is going nowhere,” he said. 

After receiving a nomination, Lazarre gave another speech before the representatives for the job of speaker pro-tempore. 

“Student Government is not only making rules, changing policies, and enacting legislation — but it’s also making sure you’re listening to the voice of the students,” he said.

Rep. Joshua Rutledge highlighted that the House could do more to improve. 

“Last year, the House only used 50 percent of its budget. Thousands of dollars that could’ve been used for the betterment of the student body went unspent, and because such, our budget was cut,” he said.

Rep. Lazarre and Rep. Rutledge were tied by ten votes for pro-tempore, but after a run-off vote, Lazarre, who served as former Rules & Policies committee chair, was elected by a vote of 13-11. Also in the running was Rep. Michael Evard-Vescio. 

Rep. Edward Perez, who was previously the CBAC chair, was re-elected chair by a vote of 13-11. Also in the running was recently sworn in Rep. Marvel Joseph. 

Perez noted his previous role on the committee, operating an $852,000 budget. “Out of anyone here right now, I would say I have the most experience with that,” he said.

The Student Union also added renovations to the House chambers on their agenda. The room is expected to have new A/V equipment, tables, and chairs, according to student body President Kevin Buchanan. 

The next meeting will be Oct. 25 at 3:30 p.m. in the Student Union House Chambers.

Israel Fontoura is the news editor of the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected]