The IU Student Government Congress introduced four new bills, including one denouncing IU’s response to an incident involving a Palestinian student during their meeting Monday night.
Bill No. 1008, the Denouncement of Inadequate Disciplinary Actions Act of 2023, or the DIDA Act, would create a policy denouncing IU’s response to an incident involving a Palestinian student on campus. Sophomore Hailey Toch posted a TikTok video about her interaction with a Palestinian student on her floor. She admitted she wouldn't have answered the door or engaged in a full conversation if she had known his nationality.
Bill No. 1009, the Marching Hundred Grant Act would make an appropriation in the form of a donation of $25,000 to the Marching Hundred, a band at IU that plays during sporting events and special campus events. The money would be allocated in the interest of preserving and enhancing its legacy.
However, this proposed legislation raised concerns from Treasurer Alex Kaswan, who wrote in representation of the Board of Finance, to the Oversight and Finance Committee, which is responsible for the structure and finances of IUSG.
“It is clear that the Marching Hundred is capable of fundraising from other means, as evidenced by the completion of Marching Hundred Hall which costs $10 million,” Kaswan said in a written statement that Speaker of Congress Jack Tyndall read while introducing the bill. “Considering this, we would like to encourage the Marching Hundred to explore alternative avenues for securing funding.”
The Ray E. Cramer Marching Hundred Hall was completed in December 2017, and is a practice facility for the Marching Hundred and allows instrument storage for members.
Bill No. 1010, the Teach IT Donation Act, would provide funding for resources, specifically Teach IT educational tools, in the Luddy School of Informatics Laurie Burns McRobbie Serve IT Clinic. The Serve IT Clinic is an opportunity for students to earn internship credits and apply technology to support local nonprofit organizations.
Bill No. 1011, the Sustainability Advocacy Agenda, would provide a yearlong policy concerning sustainability across IU.
Following the introduction of these bills, Tyndall gave a statement regarding concerns from the student body.
“I would like to encourage the production and discussion of any legitimate bill, no matter how polished, controversial or complete it is. Our job is to bring forward issues we recognize in the student body here at IU and decide where we stand on it, dictating carefully how to best advocate and solve these problems,” Tyndall said. “Any bill that sparks discussion and gets students engaged is a good bill in this organization. We want nothing more than to make the student body better in the best way possible.”
The bills were only introduced during Monday’s meeting, meaning representatives did not engage in any debate regarding the legislation. The bills still need to go through their respective committees before going to full Congress for a vote.
In addition, Congress announced Kayla Brooks’s resignation from her position as Representative of Off-Campus Housing, effective Oct. 23.
CORRECTION: A previous version of this story misstated Alex Kaswan was the sole author a letter sent to the Oversight and Finance Committee, and that the letter encouraged the Marching Hundred to secure strict funding stemming from incorrect information from a source.