Referendum RFC06/1 – Structures

Referendum RFC06/1 – Structures

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The Executive Committee of the Students’ Union of the National University of Ireland, Galway hereby gives notice of a referendum – number RFC06/1 (Structures) – of its members under Article 18 of its Constitution to be held on Wednesday 22nd February 2006.

Votes in Favour – 532
Votes Against – 244
Total Valid Poll -766
Spoiled Votes – 14
Total Poll – 790
Result – Passed

The full motion text is as follows:

“That the Constitution of the Students’ Union of the National University of Ireland, Galway, passed by referendum on 18th April 2002 and amended by referendum RFC04/1 on 19th February 2004, be amended as follows:-

ARTICLE 6: STRUCTURE

Section (ii), sub-section A. Representational:

Replace the words “Administrative Officer” with the words “senior staff member”.
Delete the words “In the case of accounts of specific interest however, mandates may be changed by agreement with each of the above mentioned signatories. Responsibility for the College Bar (Student Club) and the SU Travel Office shall be retained by the Student Union Executive who shall pass over management of same to the commercial Company unless otherwise expressly decided by an AGM.”

Section (ii), sub-section B. Commercial:

Replace this entire section with the following: “The commercial activities of the Students’ Union shall be run in accordance with the provisions of this constitution. Siopa na Mac Léinn, Concourse Catering, Bar Catering and the College Bar shall be controlled by the Board of Directors of NUI Galway Students’ Union Commercial Services Limited. Responsibility for Publications, Entertainments and the general office services (general office services being exam papers, lockers and other services as may be decided from time-to-time by the Executive) shall be retained by the Executive Committee.

Signatories on cheques and all forms of debit paper from the Union’s companies’ accounts shall be decided by the respective Boards of Directors of these companies.”

ARTICLE 7: OFFICERS

Section A:

Delete sub-section (iv) “The Vice-President / Campaigns and Communications Officer”;
Delete sub-section (v) “The Secretary”;
Delete sub-section (viii) “The Disability Awareness Officer”;
Delete sub-section (ix) “The Environmental Awareness Officer”;
Insert “The Postgraduate Officer” as sub-section (iv);
Insert “The Student Development Officer” as sub-section (v);
Re-number accordingly.

Section B:

Replace this entire section with the following “The President shall be an ex-officio member of all Union committees and sub-committees unless otherwise stated in the Constitution and its Schedules. S/He may delegate her/his position on all committees, except the CRC and Executive Committee, to members of the Executive Committee or CRC.”

Section D:

Insert the words “They shall receive and sign employment contracts prior to taking up office and shall be remunerated at a rate to be decided by the Executive Committee.” after “the Union.”

ARTICLE 9: GENERAL MEETINGS

Replace the words “the Secretary” with the words “the Administrative Secretary”.

ARTICLE 10: CLASS REPRESENTATIVES COUNCIL

Section C:

Replace the words “The Secretary of the Union shall be ex-officio secretary of the CRC.” with the words “The Administrative Secretary of the Union shall be the non-voting secretary of the CRC. In the event of the Administrative Secretary being unavailable, the President shall nominate a member of the CRC to record the minutes for that meeting.”

Sections I, J, L:

Replace all instances of the words “the Secretary” with the words “the Administrative Secretary”.

Section N:

Replace the words “every second meeting” with the words “every second ordinary meeting”.

ARTICLE 11: THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

Section A:

Delete section (i) “The President”.
Insert the following as section (i): “The President of the Union, who shall be chairperson and shall have responsibility to uphold this Constitution and the terms of reference of all Union companies. The President shall be responsible for liaising with the appropriate staff members of the Union, the Union’s companies and with University management. S/He shall have responsibility for the finances of the Union in conjunction with the senior staff member and shall report to the Executive on this and the activities of the Union’s companies. The President shall also be responsible for ultimate coordination of Students’ Union campaigns and shall be required to act as a member of the Boards of Directors of companies owned by or related to the Union. S/He will represent Union members on University committees, and shall be the Chief Executive Officer and chief spokesperson of the Union. The President shall be the principal delegate to the National Council and Annual Congress of the Union of Students in Ireland. The President shall also be required to give a mandatory report on work carried out at each Executive meeting.”
Delete sub-section (ii) “The Secretary”;
Replace the words “the Secretary” with the words “the Administrative Secretary” in sub-section (iv).
Delete sub-section (v) “The Vice-President / Campaigns and Communications Officer”;
Delete sub-section (vi) “The Equality Officer”;
Insert the following as sub-section (vi): “The Equality Officer, who shall have responsibility for the promotion of equal opportunities and equal participation for all members of the Union. To this end, s/he shall initiate relevant campaigns to highlight and address difficulties facing ‘traditional’ and ‘non-traditional’ students. The Equality Officer shall be responsible for promoting integration in all student activities and shall provide a limited number of hours weekly for the purposes of consultation and referral for Union members. S/He will represent Union members on various University committees.”
Delete sub-section (vii) “The Disability Awareness Officer”;
Delete sub-section (ix) “The Environmental Awareness Officer”;
Insert the following as sub-section (v): “The Postgraduate Officer, who shall be responsible for developing Union policy on postgraduate education. S/He shall lobby for better induction, training and other facilities for postgraduate students. S/He shall also be responsible for encouraging postgraduate student participation in the Union and the University and shall work primarily in conjunction with the Vice-President / Education Officer. S/He will represent Union members on various University committees.”
Insert the following as sub-section (vii): “The Student Development Officer, who shall be responsible for the promotion of an active university community through encouraging volunteering and participation in extra-curricular activities amongst members of the Union. To this end, s/he shall support and advance initiatives that contribute to the overall development of students. S/He will represent Union members on various University committees.”
Replace the words “who shall enforce Article 6.i.(C) and 6.i.(D) and who shall promote the Irish language and culture in NUI Galway.” with the words “who shall be responsible for the promotion of the Irish language and culture amongst the members of the Union. To this end, s/he shall enforce Article 6.i.(C) and 6.i.(D) and shall support the work of the Irish language societies on campus.” in sub-section (viii).
Re-number accordingly.

Section C:

Insert the words “The Executive Committee shall decide Union policy and all members of the Executive shall be bound by these policies. All members of the Executive Committee shall be required to present a work plan for the year ahead to the Executive for approval before week two of the first semester. This work plan shall be reviewed and, if necessary, updated before the start of the second semester and again at the end of the second semester and at any other time that the Executive Committee deems appropriate.” after the words “of the Union”.

Section E:

Replace the word “six” with the word “five”.
Insert the words “The Administrative Secretary of the Union shall not be a member of the Executive, but shall act as secretary to the Executive Committee and shall be responsible for recording minutes and other duties as required from time-to-time by the Executive. In the event of the Administrative Secretary being unavailable, the President shall nominate a member of the Executive to record the minutes for that meeting.”

Section G:

Replace the word “six” with the word “five”.

Section H:

Insert the words “All members of the Executive shall have a collective responsibility for the successful operation of the Union. All members of the Executive must maintain confidentiality on any matter deemed confidential by the Executive.” after the words “the Union”.

Section J:

Replace this entire section with the words “The Elections Committee. This shall comprise of the President, the Vice-Presidents and the Returning Officer appointed under Schedule I, section A, sub-section 1. The Administrative Secretary shall act as non-voting secretary to the committee. The duties of this committee are to oversee the running of all Union elections and to decide on any matters relating to such which are not specifically covered in this constitution and it’s schedules. If a member of the committee is running for re-election, they must resign their position on the Elections Committee. The Executive Committee shall nominate one of their number as a replacement. The Elections Committee must also provide a list of rules and regulations for candidates on Union notice boards before campaigning begins.”
Replace this entire section with the words “The Publications Committee. This shall comprise of the President and the Vice-Presidents and the relevant staff members nominated by the Executive Committee. The Administrative Secretary shall act as non-voting secretary to the committee. The duties of this committee are to oversee the non-editorial organisation of all Union publications and to decide on any matters relating to such which are not specifically covered in this constitution and its schedules of Seirbhisi Comhaltas na Mac Léinn, Ollscoil na Gaillimhe Teoranta.”
Insert the following as sub-section (v): “The Societies’ Forum. The Societies’ Forum shall be chaired by the Societies’ Chairperson and shall meet at least once per semester. The purpose of the Societies’ Forum shall be to discuss any relevant issues arising which affect the University’s societies. The Societies’ Forum shall be open to the auditors of the University’s societies. An auditor may nominate a society representative to attend in his/her place. The Societies’ Chairperson must provide a written report of work in progress and any other relevant information to at least one Societies’ Forum per semester and may be requested also by the Societies’ Forum to provide additional reports.”
Insert the following as sub-section (vi): “The Clubs’ Forum. The Clubs’ Forum shall be chaired by the Clubs’ Captain and shall meet at least once per semester. The purpose of the Clubs’ Forum shall be to discuss any relevant issues arising which affect the University’s clubs. The Clubs’ Forum shall be open to the captains of the University’s clubs. A captain may nominate a club representative to attend in his/her place. The Clubs’ Captain must provide a written report of work in progress and any other relevant information to at least one Clubs’ Forum per semester and may also be requested by the Clubs’ Forum to provide additional reports.”

Section (new):

Insert the following as a new section after section I: “Incoming full-time Officers shall be required to attend one week of crossover training in advance of taking office. Such training shall be provided by the outgoing Officer. This training shall normally take place in the first three weeks of the month of June and dates shall be agreed in advance between the incoming Officer and the outgoing Executive. Incoming Officers shall be remunerated at the same rate as the full-time Officers for this week’s training. However, this remuneration shall not be payable in the case of an outgoing full-time Officer having been elected to the same or another Executive office.”
Re-number accordingly.

ARTICLE 14: MINUTES

Replace the words “the Union Secretary” with the words “the Administrative Secretary”.

ARTICLE 15: AMENDMENTS

Section A:

Replace the words “A referendum shall be the only method of amending the Constitution” with the words “A referendum of the members of the Union shall be the only method of amending the Constitution and such a referendum shall be carried out in accordance with the provisions laid out in Article 18”.

Section C:

Replace the words “the Constitution or its Schedules” with the words “the Schedules of this Constitution”.
Replace the words “and, if appropriate, website” with the words “and website(s)”.

Section D:

Delete this section.

ARTICLE 17: INTERPRETATION OF MINUTES AND MOTIONS OF ALL UNION MEETINGS

Replace the words “the Secretary” with the words “the Administrative Secretary”.

ARTICLE 18: THE REFERENDUM

Sections B, C:

Replace the word “three” with the word “four”.

ARTICLE 19: COMMERCIAL ACTIVITIES

Section 2:

Delete the words “Publications/Seirbhísí, Entertainments and the General Office Area. The Company shall be responsible for all Student Union bank accounts in operation at present with the exception of the Representational Account which shall be the full responsibility of the Students’ Union Executive.”

Section 5:

Insert the words “who shall act as Chairperson of the Board” after the words “Students’ Union”.
Delete sub-section (i).d.
Delete sub-section (iii).
Insert the words “The senior staff member of the company shall act as non-voting secretary to the Board. S/He shall be responsible for the organisation of Board meetings and any other duties as may be decided from time-to-time by the Board.” as sub-section (iii).

Section 7:

Replace the words “the Administrator” with the words “the senior staff member”.

SCHEDULE I: ELECTIONS

Section B

Insert the words “Notwithstanding this, only registered postgraduate students of the University shall be eligible to vote in the election of the Postgraduate Officer.” after the words “is a student or not” in sub-section 7.
Delete current sub-section 11.
Insert the words “The ballot paper shall contain the names of all candidates. In all elections where there are any nominations, ballot papers shall include as an option the statement ‘Re-open nominations’, which shall be treated as a candidate and shall be the last name on the ballot appear. If the ‘Re-open nominations’ candidate is elected, the Returning Officer shall declare the vacancy unfilled and a new election shall be held in accordance with the provisions of this Schedule.” as sub-section 11.

Sections C, E:

Delete all instances of the words “Secretary or”.

ALL ARTICLES

Replace all instances of the words “Student Union” with the words “Students’ Union”.
Re-number all sections of Article 19 in accordance with the standard numbering format used elsewhere in the Constitution as follows:-
sections to be in the format A, B, C, etc.;
sub-sections to be in the format (i), (ii), (iii), etc.

INVOCATION

The changes proposed to the Constitution in this motion shall come into force at 09:00 on the morning immediately following the close of polls.”

Further information

For further information on this referendum, please read the RFC06/1 Structures Guide

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