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Central Student Government restructures its commissions

By Will Greenberg, Daily Staff Reporter
and Amrutha Sivakumar, Daily Staff Reporter
Published August 6, 2013

Tuesday evening, Business senior Mike Proppe, Central Student Government president, issued 23 executive orders to repair a constitutional oversight from last year and restructure CSG’s commissions.

The commissions’ act to carry out the fine details of the CSG executive agenda — the Entrepreneurship Commission created by former CSG President Manish Parikh helped put together the Month of Entrepreneurship among other events.

In an e-mail to Senate Assembly members Monday, Proppe said he planned to implement executive orders to appoint 24 new CSG Executive Commissions. It had been brought to his attention that all of the current commissions were not technically affiliated with CSG in the last year because the Senate Assembly never voted to grant additional terms to any of the commissions as is constitutionally mandated.

The CSG Constitution dictates that all commissions be appointed by the president for one year terms and that the Senate Assembly can vote to extend the term for another year. Commissions that have been in place for three years can be granted an additional three-year term. They have implied that only one of 22 commissions, the Entrepreneurship Commission, was legally legitimate since Parikh had appointed it during the 2012-2013 school year.

“All of those commissions were in place under the Compiled Code,” Proppe said. “I think we all just missed the rule. We just kind of assumed that the constitution carried over.”

Proppe said the new commissions look to create a “new research and task-oriented approach to addressing specific issues,” with deadlines for commission reports included in the details of each, adding that new commissions mirror many of the old ones with more updated goals to meet the University’s needs.

The new commission structure will also include an application process for students to pitch the creation of additional commissions. Senate Assembly members and other students would be welcomed to share commission proposals with the executives and Proppe will still have the final decision on new commissions.

“It’s a lot more open (now) that we’re opening this up to submission,” Proppe said. “A president has never so openly requested input on what commissions should be in.”

A report compiled by Proppe and Public Policy junior Bobby Dishell, CSG vice president, also detailed the budgetary benefits of refocusing commissions. The usage of research reports would help commission to better gauge the costs associated with accomplishing their goals, freeing up more funds to be allocated to student organization funding.

However, the majority of assembly representatives were given less than 24-hours prior notice of the changes that would come over executive branch of student government.

Proppe said in order to appoint Commission Chairs in time for the school year — already being behind schedule with the applications opening on July 31st — he decided to forgo meeting a formal meeting with Senate Assembly, which is constitutionally allowed.

Public Policy junior Sam Dickstein, forUM communications and marketing director, said forUM representatives did not expect a decision that changed CSG precedent to be taken over the summer and without assembly input.

Dickstein said he believed that by restructuring the committees, Proppe was exploiting his executive power to alter CSG operations despite a lack of support from a majority of assembly representatives as the majority of representatives who hold positions on the assembly are members of forUM, not Proppe’s youMICH party.

“Here I think there is a clear origin where a split has happened,” he said. “We try to put the politics aside, but here you can see that this is a decision that was made with a lot of politics in mind.”

Correction Appended: A previous version of this article mistook executive agenda for legislative agenda.

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