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Monday, October 19, 2020

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Haston calls for resignation of Administration and Finance VP, deputies


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SGA President Charles Haston addresses the senate, calling for the resignation of Carlucci, Messa and Valdez.  |  Justin Tijerina/The Cougar

SGA President Charles Haston addresses the senate, calling for the resignation of Carlucci, Messa and Valdez. | Justin Tijerina/The Cougar

At the Student Government Association meeting Wednesday night, SGA had a reading of UB-51006: No Confidence Vote, which calls for the resignation of Administration and Finance Vice President Carl Carlucci, Associate Vice President Emily Messa and Assistant Vice President Esmeralda Valdez.

Present and former SGA administrations have continually brought student concerns, including auxiliary services, parking and transportation and HigherOne to light in an effort to try and change them. SGA will vote on the bill in the coming weeks.

“After many trials and tribulations over the past year, I have finally asked the committee to move forward the conversation on the No Confidence Vote for Vice President for the Division of Administration and Finance Carl Carlucci, and his two deputies Emily Messa and Esmeralda Valdez,” SGA President Charles Haston said.

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Bauer senator Pooja Magadi reads the first draft of UB-51006: No Confidence Vote. | Justin Tijerina/The Cougar

“(The bill) states that this Student Government Association has no confidence in Carl Carlucci, Emily Messa and Esmarelda Valdez and asks for their resignation.”

Haston has been calling out the Department of Administration and Finance since November, when he spoke during a public comment portion of SFAC hearings and said parts of a referendum passed by students were not honored.

The Student Service Fee, passed in the Memorandum of Understanding, was increased by $45 to fund the construction of TDECU Stadium and the renovation of the Hofheinz Pavilion. The stadium’s construction went over budget, leaving no portion of the fee for the renovation of Hofheinz. This was a violation of the memorandum, as half of the fee was supposed to go toward the construction and half toward the renovation.

Additionally, a portion of the memorandum allowing students to utilize the stadium and Hofheinz for one event with no facility rental fee has not been honored, as Frontier Fiesta submitted a request to SFAC for the cost of using TDECU Stadium as the location for the event this year. Haston has also called out Sports and Entertainment, a contracted management company as being incompetent.

These events have been the “last straw,” said Haston, for members of SGA that have fought on “a litany of serious issues affecting students to no avail.”

Carlucci presented to SGA on Nov. 20 in response to Haston’s allegations, where “he sat there and lied about those contracts,” according to Haston.

“He knew damn well what those contracts said and what they were and sat there and told us that Sports and Entertainment is on this campus and their only responsibility is to secure contracts with monetizing facilities and not the managing of facilities on campus,” Haston said. “(SGA is) acutely aware that not only does the contract say that Sports and Entertainment is in charge of managing these facilities on campus, but we saw that they were in charge of managing them and they were completely incapable.”

The bill states that “(SGA) has brought student concerns regarding Sports and Entertainment management of facilities forward to the Division of Administration and Finance in the form of private meetings and correspondence.”

Carlucci, Messa and Valdez have spent six months refusing to honor the terms of the MOU, according to Haston.

“The conclusion that I’ve come to is that the division has, because of its leadership, institutionalized the marginalization of students,” Haston said. “And that the only way that we could possibly have any type of culture change within our division, where we have a division that acts as a fiduciary for the student body – where they are actually representing us as opposed to representing third-party contractors or God knows what other reason – is that we need new leadership up there.”

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