ASFA in Action

Byelection fever as first association meeting drags on

ASFA will put forward a referendum to add a member to the sustainability committee. photo laura beeston Photo Laura Beeston

The Arts and Science Federation of Associations kicked off its first meeting on Sept. 16, getting down to business by voting on a byelection, referendum question and appointing council members to social committees.

The following are highlights of what went down during the five-and-a-half-hour meeting:

Byelection in Motion

The representatives of the 18,000-member faculty association unanimously voted to call a byelection after Marco De Gregorio, former VP Communication, resigned from office in late August and moved back home to Calgary.

“A VP Communications is vital to any organization,” said Chief Electoral Officer Nick Cuillerier, who was appointed last May. “We are fully ready to move ahead […] so we can have a VP Communications by next council meeting.”

The nomination period will run from Sept. 20 to 28 and the campaign period is set to run from Sept. 30 to Oct. 11. Polling will take place on Oct. 12 and 13.

*Extra Seat for *
A referendum question was also on the agenda for the evening. The question was created, quite literally, on the spot by VP External Chad Walcot and proposes to add a seat for a member of Sustainable Concordia to ASFA’s sustainable committee.

However, the question does not detail whether the appointed seat will be reserved for an undergraduate student. Sustainable Concordia is made up of representatives from students, faculty and administration, as well as hired staff.

“Uh, whereas in order to facilitate communication between ASFA and Sustainability Concordia, be it resolved that a fifth seat be added to ASFA’s Sustainable Committee for Sustainable Concordia,” said Walcot, having to check the secretary’s minutes at a later point in the meeting to verify what he had said.

*Nominations and *

A better part of the ASFA meeting was spent deliberating on Oversight Committees and nominations. Generally, each committee meets once a month and consists of two members of council or a member of the executive plus a student at-large.

When it came down to selecting members for the Communication and External Committee—responsible for outreach and external communication with the Concordia Student Union—ASFA President Aaron Green was adamant that committee members “focus on protests.”

“I feel we have to take a stance on tuition increases,” he said, adding that communication with the CSU in the coming year will be paramount in mobilizing the student body.

*Rollover (Play Dead) *

After nearly three hours of nominations, VP Finance Alexa Newman presented the ASFA budget from June to October.

The biggest expense on the budget was ASFA’s Orientation Frosh, which was initially projected to cost $60,000. At the meeting, it was revealed that VP Social Allie McDonald, along with Green—who said he “loves making contracts”—managed to find various sponsors and kept costs under budget at $46,000.

The announcement that no one was injured at Frosh was also met with gregarious applause.

“[Frosh] was a huge success,” said Green. “We even made the front page of The Concordian.”

The ASFA website will be up and running at the end of the month. As per the campaign promise of Green from last year, the budgets of all ASFA’s 31 member associations should also be online. In addition, it was exposed in the meeting that the Math and Statistics budget has been frozen and will be tabled next meeting.

This article originally appeared in Volume 31, Issue 06, published September 21, 2010.