Ernesto Hernandez, the vice president-elect of student services and current senator from the College of Public Service and Community Solutions, was found nonfeasant for not carrying out duties he was required to under USGD statutes.
Hernandez was given the nonfeasance by his fellow USGD senators on Friday.
A nonfeasance is described by USGD officials as a “formal slap on the wrist;” although, if Hernandez has further violations, he could face further punishment.
Hernandez did not turn in half of his weekly action reports on time and failed to meet the student feedback quota for the $5 student-fee increase. In addition to this, Hernandez did not update the minutes for the External Affairs Committee website.
As vice president of student services, Hernandez will oversee programs that students rely upon such as the Sun Devil Express, student organization coordination and coordinating with the ASU Police Department.
The nonfeasance came as a result of a new “three-strikes” policy, which the senate passed earlier this year. Under this system, the senate president can determine what constitutes a strike and then, once there have been three violations, can consult the other senate members to determine if the USGD member should be found nonfeasant.
President of USGD Corina Tapscott said that she believes the nonfeasance was necessary to send a message, but that Hernandez will be an excellent vice president of student services.
“I think it’s good that our senate stepped in to correct the behavior and let him know that this needs to change,” Tapscott said. “But I still think Ernie is going to do a great job. When we spoke to Ernie about it he was very understanding and made it clear that he wanted to improve.”
Ryan Boyd, the outgoing vice president of policy for USGD, said that he is glad that USGD was able to fulfill its role as a watchdog over its own members.
Boyd said that he does not think the nonfeasance reflects on how Hernandez will serve as vice president of services, but that the punishment was just something that had to be done.
“But, this is just a reminder for everyone that you’re required to do certain things for student government,” Boyd said. “When we don’t do our jobs as student government, students suffer”
Jackson Dangremond, the president-elect of USGD, defended Hernandez, saying that his past mistakes would not have an impact on his ability to serve as vice president of services. Dangremond also said that he understands Hernandez’s struggle to balance his schoolwork with his work with USGD.
“It’s just kind of a reminder that we are all human,” Dangremond said. “We do as USGD members have to hold ourselves to a higher standards, but at the same time we are students.”
Hernandez himself said that this has been a learning experience, which he will carry with him into his term. Hernandez said that several of his mistakes were the result of his taking too long to do things such as the weekly-activity report and the minutes for external affairs committee. Hernandez said that he has appointed a notetaker to help take minutes.
“I knew that I would make few mistakes; I did make a big mistake this time,” Hernandez said. “We always have to keep our students in mind, they need to know what goes on at our meetings and submitting my work on time is a good way to get that information to our students.”
Contact the reporter at Daniel.Perle@asu.edu.