A ‘slap in the face,’ ASNMSU Senate re-passes vetoed bills


David Castaneda

Members of the ASNMSU Senate convened on Thursday night, Sept. 15, 2022, to discuss and vote on bills that were vetoed by President Moseley.

The 66th Senate of the Associated Students of New Mexico State University met Sept.15 to discuss and reconsider two bills that were vetoed by President Garrett Moseley due to the on-going budget crisis. The bills in question were 20 and 21 regarding appropriations to Alpha Gamma Rho and Sigma Alpha. 

Bill 20, sponsored by Senators Sarah Roderick, Ethan Ortiz-Ulibarri, and Jorge Vega, proposed an appropriation of $2,000 to the account of Alpha Gamma Rho, an agricultural fraternity in the College of Agricultural, Consumer, Environmental Sciences. 

Cael Alderete, a constituent of Bill 20 and member of Alpha Gamma Rho, worked with Roderick to get the bill sponsored through the senate. He said he was passionate about receiving the funds because he wanted to give back to his chapter for providing him with various  opportunities. 

“Basically, I made this bill to help give money back to the chapter because they provided for myself and another individual to attend our national convention,” Alderete said.  “[Attending our national convention] is a big deal for our fraternity. Once we go there we conduct national business and [learn] more leadership and recruitment skills, which we bring back with us.”

Alderete said that their chapter’s money only comes from dues and that part of the money is used to pay for going to the national’s convention. He went on to explain that AGR doesn’t have a strong alumni base like other fraternities and sororities who are able to rely on their alumni for additional funds. 

“We are a younger chapter that doesn’t have a strong alumni base to fund us.  Those dues that fund our chapter are the only thing that fund [philanthropic] events.  At the end of the day, this money will just go back to our chapter and back to our community,” Alderete said.

ASNMSU Senator Ethan Ortiz-Ulibarri expresses his concerns over the budget crisis during Thursday’s meeting on Sept. 15, 2022. (David Castaneda)

Alderete said that it felt like a “slap in the face” to have his bill approved and then learn that it had been vetoed due to the on-going budget crisis.

“The fact that myself and other organizations put this bill through and went through the whole reimbursement process for it to get approved and then to get [vetoed] didn’t look good on my part,” Alderete said.

Bill 21, sponsored by Senators Roderick, Ortiz-Ulibarri, Shelden DeLara, and Annette Pettes, asked for an appropriation of $1,560 to the account of Sigma Alpha, an agricultural sorority in the ACES college.  

Roderick expressed that she believed Sigma Alpha deserved the money from ASNMSU because, similarly to AGR, they have done a lot as a chapter to represent NMSU both nationally and locally.

“I believe they truly deserve this because, again, Sigma Alpha is making a difference nationwide as well as on our campus as a very small chapter,” Roderick said.

Alderete said that, compared to AGR and other greek life organizations, Sigma Alpha is “brand new,” and they don’t have many alumni to help pay outside fees.

“[Sigma Alpha] just got chartered within the last five years, I believe. [That means] they are brand new and their alumni are barely getting jobs right now [which means] they don’t have that required funding to function properly compared to other chapters nationally,” Alderete said.

Roderick explained that Bills 20 & 21 were very important to her because her constituents had already been promised the money, and she felt like it was unfair for it to end with them not receiving the money.

“These bills were so important to me, not only because they’re part of the ACES college, but [because] both these bills had already been passed,” Roderick said. “I already told the constituents that they had the funding they requested and I just felt like it was extremely unfair for them not to get this funding.”

Roderick further expressed her gratitude to the senate for reconsidering and eventually passing her vetoed bills. 

“[Getting my bills passed] is a surreal feeling, especially after mine and Cael’s major debate last night.  That was basically a month in the making because they got seen two weeks ago and to present them again was a huge sense of accomplishment,” Roderick said.


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