Two senators under review by Judiciary Committee


Jesten Richardson

Student Body Vice President Hannah Petracca and Student Government Association senators stand before an opening prayer and Pledge of Allegiance during the SGA meeting in the Memorial Student Center March 19.

Two Student Government Association senators were under judicial review Tuesday, during a meeting of the student senate Judiciary Committee in the Memorial Student Center.

Sen. Mary Erwin, an elected representative for the College of Science, and Sen. Angel Wallace, an at-large senator, were under review by the student senate Judiciary Committee due to their attendance, said Parliamentarian Jo Tremmel, leader of the committee.

After senators acquire three unexcused absences, whether through being absent to SGA meetings or required events or being late enough that they miss the period of roll-call, where attendance is taken, the senate parliamentarian starts the judicial review process in the senate Judiciary Committee, Tremmel said. The committee decides what actions should be taken, she said.

During the senate Judiciary Committee meeting Tuesday, no action was taken against Erwin, who was under judicial review after being late to two committee meetings and absent for one, Tremmel said.

Wallace, who had been late to two committee meetings, absent for two committee meetings and absent from senate three times prior to the meeting, was censured, or given a strong recommendation to change her behavior, with the condition that if she does not attend the next SGA meeting or required event, she will be impeached by the Judiciary Committee, or recommended for removal from the SGA, Tremmel said.

When a senator is impeached by the senate Judiciary Committee, members of the student senate vote on a secret ballot whether or not to remove the senator from the SGA, Tremmel said. In order to remove the senator form SGA, a two-thirds majority vote is needed.

Senators who are removed from SGA are also put under one year of probation, making them unable to hold any position in SGA for that year, and after the year has passed, they will not be allowed to be appointed to an at-large position by the senate Judiciary Committee, but will have to be elected in order to rejoin SGA.

“It’s the senator’s job to represent the students, but in addition to that, it’s the university and SGA creating a culture at Marshall of accountability,” Tremmel said. “And then in addition to that, you’re at college to learn, and so if you’re learning that there are consequences for your actions, which some students haven’t had that before college, learning that you need to be accountable, there are consequences for your actions if you don’t follow the rules, then that’s also a valuable learning lesson.”

Wallace was not in attendance at the senate Judiciary Committee meeting or full senate meeting Tuesday.

Jesten Richardson can be contacted at [email protected].