State Senator visits USG, talks state school faculty strike

Written By Alex Grubbs, USG Beat Writer

A Pennsylvania state senator warned at Point Park’s student government meeting that some schools might “go under” if the Association of Pennsylvania State College & University Faculties strikes.

“If they walk away, it may be disastrous for some folks,” said Wayne Fontana, Democratic senator of Pennsylvania’s 42nd senatorial district while guest speaking at Monday’s United Student Government (USG) meeting.

Association of Pennsylvania State College & University Faculties (APSCUF), a union comprised of professors, coaches and faculty members from 14 state colleges and universities, have been working without a contract for over a year, according to its website.

APSCUF is currently negotiating for a new contract with the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education, comprised of the 14 schools APSCUF members work at. The union also threatens to strike in two weeks if a contract is not reached.

California University of Pennsylvania, Clarion University, Edinboro University, Indiana University of Pennsylvania and Slippery Rock University are some of the universities that will be affected if the strike goes through.

“We can only encourage both the union and the administration to try to find…a common ground,” Fontana said of Pennsylvania state government’s involvement in stopping the strike.

Continuing the meeting, USG rejected the budget of Intramural Volleyball Club, minutes after officially recognizing the organization. The budget window officially closed last week after leeway was given due to PointSync issues, two weeks after the original window close. Sen. KacieJo Brown abstained from the vote because she is the co-president of that organization.

The organization initially requested for $1,075 for membership, shuttle and advertising, but USG recommended $576 instead.

It also reinstated Soka Gakkai International, which is a Buddhist group on campus that promotes inner peace, after two years of inactivity.

USG released its internal budget, totaling $10,000. Sen. Daniel Murphy questioned how this budget differentiates from previous internal budgets and how fluid it is in terms of money moving to other areas of the budget.

Parliamentarian Charles Murria said the budget was the same, but money within the breakdown was spread across differently. USG added a new position for a graphic design coordinator, which requires $150.

USG stipends require the most money at $3,900, divided amongst the president, vice president, executive cabinet members and the new graphic design coordinator.

This is followed by forum at $1,500, clubs cushion – an emergency fund for clubs if USG deems use necessary – at $1,200 and spring semester’s Pioneer Community Day planning and USG supplies at $1,000 each. The rest of the budget goes toward USG training and office supplies.

Any money left over from this semester will roll over to spring semester’s internal budget, according to Vice President Bobby Bertha.

Treasurer Amedea Baldoni informed USG senators that they allocated $16,388 to clubs and organizations during the previous funding period, despite “some bumps in the road.”

USG also announced that its forum will take place on Friday, Nov. 4 in Lawrence Hall Ballroom.