By Amrutha Sivakumar, Daily Staff Reporter
Published September 3, 2013
The Central Student Government has increased the number of task-oriented commissions that exist within its structure in order to grow its ability to enact change on campus.
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On Aug. 15, Business senior Michael Proppe, CSG President, issued executive orders to establish two commissions — the Voice Your Vote Commission and the Commission on Detroit Engagement — based on the recommendations of CSG affiliates and student-body members.
The commissions, appointed by the CSG president, exist within the executive branch to conduct in-depth studies on campus issues and recommend solutions for consideration.
After discovering last year’s executive commissions were no longer operational within the dictates of the Constitution, CSG President Michael Proppe and Vice President Bobby Dishell initially issued executive orders in July to create 23 new “task-oriented” commissions.
However, the reorganization granted the executive commissions additional flexibility — allowing students to recommend the establishment of any additional commission to the executive branch if they felt any campus issue was underrepresented in student government.
LSA senior Hayley Sakwa, former vice presidential candidate from political party forUM and proponent of the Commission on Detroit Engagement, said the commission would bring together student leaders from various Detroit-based student organizations to facilitate collaboration.
“The missions and the goals will really come from all of the student organizations that come together in that space,” Sakwa said, citing better, low-cost transportation amenities between the University and Detroit as a possible venture. Available CSG funding would help back the commissions’ pilot projects, she added.
Besides the collaborative and programmatic function she said she hopes the commission would satisfy, Sakwa said the commission would more actively present a “strong, cohesive, united voice” to University administrators where matters regarding Detroit were concerned.
In an e-mail to the CSG commission chairs and assembly representatives, Proppe said an active Voice Your Vote Commission would be important in planning for the Ann Arbor City Council elections in November and begin the voter registration processes for the Michigan elections that will take place the following year.
The commission, unlike the Commission on Detroit Engagement, existed within last year’s executive branch, but Proppe said it was left out of the initial executive orders until he was aware of student interest.
“Initially we left it off because traditionally Voice Your Vote has not been active when there have not been national or statewide elections,” Proppe said in an interview. “But there were some students who actually wanted to leave the commission active to (register students and plan for the future).”
In the upcoming weeks, the Executive Nominations Committee will present their recommendations for the candidates that will chair the 25 commissions. Currently, Proppe and Dishell have submitted their nominations for chair positions to the Executive Nominations Committee, which is in the process of conducting reviews.
As per the CSG Constitution, the recommended candidates will be inducted into their chair positions to garner a simple majority vote from the Assembly. All commission chairs will be confirmed by Sept. 23, Proppe said.