By Jonathan Smith, Managing Editor
In an effort to reduce complications with its budget, the Students’ Association approved a new “governing document” Wednesday that will place additional responsibilities on executive officers when creating and distributing the budget.
The governing document, created by the budget committee and introduced by Rep. Tracy Binion, Chambers Hall, states: 1) no exceptions will be made for late budget entries; 2) student groups must be notified three weeks before their budgets are due; 3) the executive treasurer must provide Congress with a clean copy of the original budget submitted upon its presentation; 4) the semester’s budget must be presented to Congress at each semester’s retreat or a special congressional session; and 5) informational meetings at the end of each semester will be conducted for student groups to receive information and a budget request form for the following semester.
An amendment to the document was added at the request of Rep. Taylor Hemness, Don H. Morris Center, that said each student group will receive a paper stating what they received in the budget, what they didn’t receive and why.
The document was accepted by a vote of 37 for, zero against and three abstentions, even though the SA Constitution or bylaws say nothing about Congress’ right to create new governing documents.
According to Article III Section 3 of SA’s Constitution, “The powers and responsibilities of the Executive Officers are the same as those of the Student Congress. Other powers and responsibilities shall be outlined in the By-laws.”
The bylaws also state the hierarchy of its governing documents starts with the Constitution, then the bylaws, then the Rules of Order, and makes no reference to or exceptions for newly-created governing documents.
Executive president Jonathan Wilkerson said they decided to make it a governing document so it would carry more power and meaning than a normal resolution.
Wilkerson said even though it was passed as a governing document, SA will essentially treat it like a bill.
In other new business, Congress approved a resolution asking Physical Resources to install several new bike racks, already owned by and in possession of the university, around campus.
Congress approved the resolution, which was introduced by Binion and Sen. Robert Kinzie, junior, 37 in favor, zero against with three abstentions.
However, Congress rejected another resolution regarding bike racks. This resolution asked the administration to pay for any extra bike racks needed in the future out of its budget. It also asked that SA not have to pay for extra bike racks out of its budget even though SA has never been asked to do this in the past-several members main problem with the resolution.
“It’s a good thing, but we’ve never been asked to buy bike racks, and I don’t think we’ll get asked to buy bike racks,” International Students Association liaison Susanne Drehsel said. “We won’t be taken seriously if we’re passing worthless resolutions.”