Vacant ASUC Position May Be Eliminated

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An ASUC Senate committee will consider a bill tonight aimed at removing the solicitor general position from the association's bylaws.

The bill proposes to permanently eliminate the position, citing a lack of substantial differences between the duties of the solicitor general and the ASUC attorney general.

UNITE Greek Senator Christian Osmena, who co-authored the bill along with SQUELCH! Senator Gabe Weiner, said responsibilities of the solicitor general are similar to those of the attorney general, making the position unnecessary.

"Generally I think the duties of the solicitor general coincide with those of the attorney general," Osmena said. "I think it would be more appropriate to have the attorney general be in the sole position of ensuring that the bylaws of the constitution are upheld."

The position is currently unoccupied, as former Solicitor General Noah Johnson is studying abroad for the spring semester. The temporary committee to choose a solicitor general disbanded after selecting Johnson, leaving the position unfilled for this semester.

Executive Vice President Taylor Allbright said she believes the position is valuable and that the solicitor general's duties differ from the attorney general's role.

"While the responsibilities are quite similar to the attorney general's, there are a couple distinctions," Allbright said. "The solicitor general represents the ASUC when they are involved in a lawsuit. They are the point person for the defense."

Additionally, Allbright noted that the solicitor general works alongside the attorney general and the elections council chair to manage elections.

Last year, the position was filled by Alex Kozak, who became the ASUC Attorney General this year.

But Osmena said transitioning from the position of solicitor general to attorney general is not the only way to ensure a successful attorney general.

"I don't think having a solicitor general is the only way to do it," Osmena said. "The attorney general needs to have the opportunity to create his own staff and train people."

The bill will be reviewed by the Constitutional and Procedural Review Committee tonight. If it passes through the committee, it will move to a senate vote on Wednesday night.

Allbright said the solicitor general position was put to good use last year by Kozak and helped him transition into attorney general. But she added that she will leave it to this year's senate to decide whether it should be removed.

"The position gave him the development that allowed him to be a good attorney general," Albright said. "It was a valuable position that year, but this is a new senate and they have different opinions. Ultimately, it is the decision of the senate and I'll stand by them."


Contact Anna Widdowson at [email protected]

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