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Tuesday, May 18, 2021

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USG

USG senate passes sweeping LGBTQIA+ legislation

On Wednesday night , the University of Connecticut Undergraduate Student Government Senate passed legislation which will advocate for further LGBTQIA+ rights at the University. The bill, entitled A Statement of Position Regarding the Rights of Queer and Trans Students at UConn, advocates for UConn administration and staff to review current policies and make necessary changes that LGBTQIA+ students and allies have brought to their attention. This legislation aims to hold the UConn community accountable for intentional or unintentional microaggressions toward the LGBTQIA+ community.

A change in UConn’s drug-enforcement policy may be on the horizon

The University of Connecticut Police Department, Residential Life and Undergraduate Student Government are discussing modifications to the university’s cannabis-enforcement policy, according to USG and UCPD representatives.

USG ushers in plans for syllabus database and mental health training

The University of Connecticut Undergraduate Student Government Senate passed two pieces of legislation Wednesday night, which would provide a digital archive of course syllabi and mandatory mental health training for staff, faculty and students.

Campus Politics

Spirit Rock ‘Black Lives Matter’ mural vandalized

The University of Connecticut Police Department arrested two individuals last week after they admitted to vandalizing and partially spray painting over the “Black Lives Matter” Spirit Rock mural on Hillside Road of the university’s main campus in Storrs, according to a press release.

USG honors students who fixed Spirit Rock

On Wednesday, the Undergraduate Student Government at the University of Connecticut held their bi-weekly senate meeting, discussing pass/fail legislation for the 2020-21 academic year, a new proposal for the spring 2021 academic calendar and honoring the two students who fixed the defaced Spirit Rock.

Outsider vandalized UConn’s Spirit Rock

The University of Connecticut’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion discovered the person behind the vandalization of the campus’ Spirit Rock is not part of the UConn community.

Housing

University shifting to blue COVID-19 residential status, lifting some restrictions

Beginning Thursday, the University of Connecticut will be relaxing several COVID-19 related restrictions, such as allowing guests in residence halls and larger events outside as part of a university transition to blue status, according to email Wednesday from Dean of Students, Elly Daugherty.

Residential Assistants upset over updated employment end date and potential reduced stipend

The University of Connecticut Residential Life informed its residential assistants and senior resident assistants on Feb. 22 of an updated employment end date that would lead to a stipend reduction for those who choose to leave early. ResLife emailed the residential assistants and senior residential assistants to say their employment end date per their contract ends Monday, May 10. However, for RAs or SRAs who want to change their employment end date to Monday, April 12 – the start of spring break – they may do so at the expense of having their semesterly stipend reduced.

UConn ResLife delays Fall 2021 housing selection process

Earlier this month, Residential Life at the University of Connecticut sent out an email to students eligible for fall semester housing, notifying them about the delay in the housing selection process until after spring break. The email also reminded students that the deadline to apply for fall housing has been extended to Feb. 28.

BUDGET

Audit finds UConn Hartford campus $30M over budget

The construction of the University of Connecticut campus in Hartford ran almost $30 million over budget, according to an audit released by the Auditors of Public Accounts on April 13.

USG Senate passes UNITED Act, budget amendments, & Middle Eastern Cultural Center

Last night the University of Connecticut Student Government Senate discussed the implementation of the Undergraduates in Tandem Elevating Diversity (UNITED) Act, amendments to the USG budget and the establishment of a Middle Eastern Cultural Center at the Storrs campus.

UConn students call to refund the CT Commitment initiative

A petition to refund the Connecticut Commitment initiative at the University of Connecticut has already reached 863 signatures as of Thursday, according to the petition currently on Change.org.

University to Pause Connecticut Commitment Student Aid Program

On Wednesday, University of Connecticut President Thomas Katsouleas announced that the university would pause its Connecticut Commitment student financial aid program for the foreseeable future due to budget deficits.

USG talks budget, confirms senator positions and talks mental health legislation

On Wednesday, the Undergraduate Student Government at the University of Connecticut held their bi-weekly senate meeting where they discussed the university’s budget, confirmed senator positions and approved legislation for the spring 2021 fee plan, Mental Care Act and international student wellness.

UConn not actively hiring police officers

The University of Connecticut is not currently hiring new police officers to the UConn Police Department, according to University Spokesperson Stephanie Reitz, after UConn activist group #EverybodyEatsButUConn posted on social media that UConn is filling 20 vacant police officer positions.

CONNECTICUT

Connecticut dog tests positive for COVID-19

CVMDL has been conducting surveillance for COVID-19 in both dogs and cats as part of a national effort led by the United States Department of Agriculture, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. They are one of 38 laboratories in the United States in the National Animal Health Laboratory Network reporting their results.

New Executive Order allows mask exemption for medical conditions

In Connecticut, any person in a public place must have a medical condition, be under the age of two and/or be a child in a child care setting in order to not wear a mask or face covering, according to the state’s latest executive order No. 7NNN.

$1 million settlement reached in wrongful death lawsuit filed by parents of Jeffny Pally

The parents of a sophomore at the University of Connecticut who died after being run over by a fire truck in 2016 have reached a $1 million settlement against the state and other defendants, according to the Hartford Courant.

ConnPIRG in support of state styrofoam ban 

The University of Connecticut’s chapter of ConnPIRG testified in support of a bill that will ban styrofoam in Connecticut. According to a ConnPIRG press release, the General Assembly’s Environment Committee voted in favor to pass SB 99: “An Act Concerning Use and Distribution of Polystyrene Products.”

Connecticut: One of the worst states for robocalls, report finds

Connecticut ranks eighth when it comes to most complaints to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), according to a recent report from Consumer Complaints Over Time, an independent organization that analyzes FCC complaints. 

Connecticut sues for compound drug billing fraud

The state of Connecticut has sued a Florida-based compound pharmacy for violations against the Connecticut False Claims Act. The lawsuit calls for civil penalties, treble damages and other relief under the Connecticut False Claims Act, according to a press release from the Office of the State Attorney General George Jepsen.

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