Written by Bhromor Rahman
Edited by Anson Yeh
Our first bi-annual GA starts tomorrow!
When I voted on amendments last semester, I was overwhelmed by the mountain of amendments; most of which were just small adjustments to wording and so on. I realized that
not everyone literally no one has time to look over all the amendments, so I went over all of them (so you don’t have to) and selected the important ones.
You might ask what criteria I used to assign ‘‘importance’’.
Allow me to explain briefly:
A lot of amendments during GAs are quite benign. Most of those are semantical or procedural formalities (like moving article 4.3.5 to 6.1.2 or removing ‘‘the’’ from a sentence).
However, there are also amendments that drastically change how Congress, MSU and clubs function. They are impactful; that is to say disruptive. (like requiring clubs to change their fundraising practices or having to fill extra paperwork for XYZ). Those are the ones I outlined below.
Feel free to ask your Congress members questions about the amendments if you have any. I will also attach a link to the full documents as well, so you can read them for fun (or not, it’s pretty boring).
HERE ARE THE IMPORTANT AMENDEMENTS MAKE SURE TO READ ALL OF THEM!
1. MSU Constitution
Full constitution document:
Amendment #1: Congress Office hours
Amends article 1.7.6
#1 Makes MS Teams the official platform for Congress office hours for circumstances in which members cannot be physically present at the Congress Office (like a global pandemic).
Amendment #4 to #7: Petitions
Amend articles 5.1.1, 5.1.2 and 5.1.3 respectively.
#4 would establish a new template that petitions would have to follow (available on MSU Congress website).
#5 would compel the organizer of a petition to notify and update the Coordinator of Student Advocacy on a regular basis about the state of said petition (from conception to signatures).
#6 would increase the required signatures from 100 to 200.
#7 would require the petition to be submitted with all the signatures included.
Amendment #8 and #10: GA dates
Amend articles 6.3 and 22.214.171.124
#8 and #10 both essentially reduce the notice Congress has to announce GA dates from 10 days to five.
2. Congress bylaws
Full bylaws document:
Amendment #1: Mental health
Amends article 1.1.15
#1 would require every Congress member to receive mental health training within the first semester of their mandate.
Amendment #5: Club finances
Amends article 126.96.36.199
#5 would require the Financial Assistant to update fundraising and grant balances of each club.
Amendment #12 and #13: Club contracts
Amend articles 188.8.131.52 to 184.108.40.206
#12 would require the Coordinator of Internal Affairs to sign off all written contracts between clubs and Congress as well as clubs and external organizations.
#13 would require the Coordinator of Internal Affairs to provide templates for aforementioned contracts and review all legal documentation.
Amendment #16: Referendum petitions
Amends article 220.127.116.11
#16 increases the number of signatures required to call a referendum from 100 to 200.
Amendment #17 and #22: Grievances
Amend articles 5.3.2 and 6.3
#17 would only assemble the grievance investigation committee known as ‘‘The Review Board’’ when such a grievance is called to act upon.
#22 such grievances must now be signed by at least 200 members of the MSU.
Amendment #24: Congress office
Amends article 8.11.1
#24 would require non-Congress members to be accompanied by a Congress member in the office.
3. Club bylaws
Full bylaw document:
Amendment #1 and #2: Sweeping new powers for VP Finance
Amend articles 3.2 and 3.9
#1 would allow the VP Finance, at his discretion, to exceptionally permit clubs to deposit their funds outside of the MSU bank account.
#2 mandates the reabsorption of clubs’ unused funds by Congress at the end of every semester unless an alternative arrangement has been made with the VP Finance who can make exceptions at his discretion.
Editor’s note: make sure to vote at the GA; you are definitely affected in some way by some of these amendments. If you don’t vote, you can’t complain after!