Wednesday Sept. 18 marked the first CSU Council meeting of the 2013 fall semester. Issues of fee levy groups were brought up, as well as CSU former executives’ Newtown party expenses and the appointment of new Senators and many committee members.
The Fee Levy Advocacy group at Concordia had a member from both the Centre for Gender Advocacy and QPIRG asking that point 138 (a) of CSU’s Standing Regulations be either re-evaluated or removed. The point added in February 2012 states that “The constitution and/or regulations must state a majority of the board of directors voting seats shall be held by currently registered Concordia students. Notwithstanding, the above shall not apply to fee levies used to collect membership fees for multi-membership provincial or federal educational lobby groups.” This point was added without any consultation from the fee levy groups and while the representing members encourage students to be part of their board they feel it is something the CSU should encourage as opposed to mandate.
While the representing members believe it is very reasonable to have students control their organization through constitutions, they should not prioritize student status over needed practical skills. The representative from QPIRG said, “a one size fits all approach may not be reflective of all the organizations” and that “active participation from alumni and other non-students could be a valuable asset.”
After a lengthy discussion the issue of composition was referred to policy committee with a report to be drafted for the first Council meeting to be held in January.
With regards to the former executives of the CSU having used Council funds for a party, CSU Councillor Wendy Kraus-Heitmann’s made a motion requesting that the current council write a formal letter to the former executives, asking that they refund the council for their excessive and unapproved party expenses. The motion passed. The motion requests that former executives Nadine Attallah, Alexis Suzuki, Andrew Roberts, Simon Pierre Lauzon, Keny Toto, and Stefan Faina reimburse their spending of $9,000 over budget.
CSU has appointed several new members to student committees and senate. Appointed as the new CSU Chairperson is Nicolas Cuillerier, with hopes to use CSU resources to promote council meetings and make them more inviting for students. In addition he plans to ensure that meeting dates and agendas are posted in advance on the CSU website.
Cuillerier was disappointed to announce that according to CSU bylaws, as CSU Chairperson he is no longer able to chair for the Judicial Board. Despite having to send in his resignation Cuillerier said, “I have full faith that the board will select a reliable new Chairperson and I will be there in the short term to help them with the transition.”
Loic Sanscartier from JMSB is presently the VP Academic & Student Affairs at CASA JMSB, but insists he sit on the Senate independently of any association with CASA. When asked what aspirations he has as a member of Senate Sanscartier said, “As a member of Senate, I hope to be able to accurately voice the interests and concerns of my fellow JMSB students and of Concordia students as a whole. I also intend to work with fellow Senators to find ways to increase undergraduate students’ involvement in their own education, be it through curriculum innovation, research opportunities or other forms of experiential learning.”