Salient. Victoria University Students Newspaper. Vol. 38, No. 2. March 11, 1975
If the quality of the first SRC of the year is any indication, 1975 will be the most boring university year in living memory.
In a meeting which fluctuated between totally uncalled for frivolity and utter boredom the only interesting thing was the expression on Lisa Sacksen's face.
After spending twenty minutes determining whether or not Paul Swain resembled a hot drink machine, the SRC then spent a reasonably interesting half hour on accommodation and enrolment fees. Things were looking up. And then came the crunch. The next motion, the third on the agenda of six, took the rest of the alloted time, one hour and ten minutes worth. While this topic was very important, the time spent on it was totally out of proportion to its value. The fact that the meeting lapsed just before 2.00 for want of a quorum indicates that the student masses thought likewise.
The meeting started with discussion on the Paul Swain machine, better known to the every day student as the hot drink dispenser. After much argument and much hairsplitting it was decided that the Paul Swain machine would remain the Paul Swain machine. Because of a legal technicality Colin Feslier was not forced to put his name on the toilets. This news was greeted with much derision and a sigh of relief from the erstwhile Publications Officer. Policy on the perennial issue of toilet paper quality was then made, and it was moved that for environmental reasons white toilet paper should not be approved by the SRC' After a division (in which it was discovered that I couldn't count) was called for, the motion was lost. An annoyed Dale Stevens then moved that the SRC should censure itself. If did.
The SRC was then referred to the summary of SRC General Policy prepared by John Roseveare. He was congratulated by the SRC for the excellence of this publication and for the fact that he went against convention to keep an election promise. SRC officers then submitted reports, the most notable ones being Peter Aagaard's report on catering and the report on the NZUSA welfare scheme.
The first major item on the agenda was a three part motion on VUWSA students flats. The first part said that only VUWSA members would be allowed to inhabit VUWSA-run flats. The SRC considered this rather restrictive as there was the problem of holiday vacancies which students could quite conceivably fail to fill, and also the problem of what was euphemistically termed 'non-student lovers.' No more need he said. After an amendment stating that students would be given priority over non-students the motion was passed. The next two parts of the motion were concerned with bonds and leases in VUWSA flats, and both were passed without a great deal of discussion.
Then came the issue of the extra fee of $10 extracted from students who cannot afford to pay their fees on time. There was a great deal of discussion on this, the main theme being that if a student is too poor to pay then it was totally pointless for the university bureaucracy to make him poorer still by making him pay through the nose for the privilege of deferring payment of his fees. The motion asked SRC to deplore this blatant piece of money-grabbing by the university authorities. The SRC decided unanimously that this was in fact deplorable and added a rider to the effect that all such fees already paid this year should be refunded immediately. Whether the registrar will take any notice of the SRC decision is another matter.
Then came the most protracted and frankly boring SRC motion I have ever seen. It concerned the pre-set exam timetable and the failure of the 1974 Prof Board reps and council to report back to SRC. Pat Duignan, the mover of the motion, spoke first for about ten minutes on nothing that wasn't already common knowledge. I thought at the time that nothing could possibly be less interesting. I was wrong. The following hour reached the very sea floor of boredom. It was that bad. While nearly everybody agreed that the pre-set timetable, or for that matter any timetable limiting students' choices, was thoroughly despicable, and that the Prof Board and council reps needed censuring there was absolutely no need for Pat Duignan to harp on about what appeared to me to be a private vendetta against the 1974 reps. I just hope that this spectacle will not be repeated this year, because if it is the 1975 SRCs will not be very well attended meetings.
The gathering failed for want of a quorum just before 2.00 with half of the agenda still unfinished and about a hundred very disillusioned students sprinting out the door. I don't blame them
Now that I've convinced you that SRC is a waste of time I would now like to reverse this and put it to you that only with your support will the SRC be successful. Only with your support will it be at all interesting. And remember, the SRC is your policy making body. You are the members. You make the decisions. Come along and make them.