Associated Students Beat Reporter
Photo by Cindy Chang, Staff Photographer
External Vice President for Local Affairs Cameron Schunk discussed the need for student support on Assemblymember Das Williams’ bill, AB3, at the Feb. 18 meeting of the Associated Students Senate at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
“Isla Vista has a long history of neglect, abuse, and tragedy,” said Schunk. “[It] has gone decades without proper investment or adequate stewardship.”
According to Schunk, the Resolution in Support of Das Assemblymember Das Williams’ Bill AB3—authored by off-campus senators Paola Dela Cruz and Carlos Lopez—aims to inform about and advocate for the movement for the establishment of self-governance in Isla Vista. Currently, Isla Vista is unincorporated, and the community’s only form of self governance in the Recreation and Parks District, which is unable to address issues such as tenants rights, lighting, and policing.
“AB3 is the best option for Isla Vista now, and can act as a springboard for a greater form of governance in the future,” said Schunk. “It is not only acceptable but also rational to be concerned about a change this big. However, in order to prevent tragedy and put Isla Vista on the right path, we need a strong, sustainable local government that can give us self-determination for our community.”
The resolution was moved to Immediate Consideration where it was unanimously passed.
Additionally, Jamelia Harris, representing the UCSB Black Student Union, and Ernie Pina, Queer Commission intern, were in attendance to request funding for an alternative Spring Break trip to Ferguson, Mo.
“We are looking to make more meaningful and direct change in the communities that we so proudly advocate for,” said Harris. “[The] Ferguson Alternative Spring Break would basically be an opportunity to allow all students… to go to Ferguson for a seven day experience and they are able to do community service in the communities that were most impacted by the Ferguson riots.”
Pina stated that although they are requesting a total of $4,821, only a portion of the funding—$3,778—is time sensitive, as it will be used to purchase flight tickets. He said that the two organizations, BSU and QComm, will be requesting the remaining funds within the next two weeks.
As BSU has already used their one-time exception for requesting travel funds last minute, the AS Senate granted the $3,778 to People of Isla Vista, an organization within BSU, using their one-time exception.