Hi folks! It’s your Member-at-Large Brennan here with another council live blog. This will be a special meeting of council—it’s our last meeting before the executive and Board of Governors reps changeover on March 15.
10:12: The meeting is called to order! We recognize that we are on unceded, traditional Mi’kmaq territory.
After a couple of small amendments, the agenda has been adopted! The minutes from the last meeting were approved as well.
ORAL REPORTS OF COUNCILLORS:
Benn, the Residence Rep, is reporting first. He was happy with how the King’s Talks event went—turnout was a little bit lower than he wished for, but those who were there were enthusiastic.
Next up is Zoë, one of our Board of Governors reps. She has been busy with changeover, working a lot with Aidan (the outgoing Financial VP), as well as working on preparing a changeover document for the incoming Board of Governors reps. Zoë has been attending many committee meetings as Financial VP, including her first finance committee meeting! She was also one of the folks on the inside of the sit-in at MLA Kelly Regan’s office, protesting tuition fee resets and demanding that the government pass Bill 114. Finally, she attended the most recent meeting of the Board of Governors.
Time for my report! I have been busy doing changeover with Alex, who has been so kind and patient and helpful. She took me around campus to meet many of the folks I will be working with, and I also had a check-in meeting with Alex Doyle, directors of facilities. I can’t thank her enough for her work with me in the past few weeks, and the great work that she did this year as the Student Life Vice-President.
Next up is Kristen, our journalism rep. She is excited that King’s students took to the picket line in support of striking HTU workers, and also noted that The Watch has elected a new executive.
Time for the report of Melina, our arts rep. These past few weeks have been busy with conferences—the DASSS conference at Dal and the EMSS conference here at King’s. She also provided an update from DASSS—most of their funding for the rest of the year has been used up, which is a good thing!
Next up is Nate, our science rep. He has been working on an ask an upper year event to help first year science students with course registration. He is also working on a zine for incoming first-year science students.
Time for the reports of the Day Students’ Society representatives, Liam and Joy. Liam has been busy with BoG changeover and attended the last Board meeting. The DSS held a life chats event with free tea in the Wardroom (great turnout!) as well as a tenants rights workshop (also a success!). Joy attended the most recent Campus Master Planning meeting, and suggested that they outline the goal of the document as being about student safety. Joy also went over the Wardroom renovation plans with representatives from the Facilities department and the Advancement Office. Construction on the Wardroom will start right after the end of the academic year, and the project will go to tender in April.
Finally, a distance report from Taylor (our other BoG rep who cannot be here this morning). He prepared a report with the results of his open board meetings survey, which was presented at the March 10 Board meeting. This meeting was generally uneventful, except for the decision not to renew the wage freeze for faculty and staff. He also thanks the outgoing executive for their hard work this year.
REPORTS OF THE EXECUTIVE:
First up is Alex Bryant, our President. The governance, HR and nominating committee (which will be making a decision re: open Board meetings) was postponed, but he has full faith that the decision will be coming through. This committee is also working to change the nominating process for the Board to attempt to alter the current nominating process’ skew towards white men from corporate backgrounds.
Alex also attended the most recent Board meeting, where they approved a deficit budget for next year (exciting that the university is committed to maintaining core services) as well as the Campus Master Plan document. He was also happy with this year’s Alex Fountain Memorial Lecture, presented by Dr. Miriam Toews.
Next is the Student Life VP, Alex McVittie. She missed the last Campus Master Planning committee meeting but sent an email to be read in her absence. She also thanks everyone who helped her and worked with her during her term as SLVP.
Next is the report of Aidan, our Financial VP. She attended a meeting of the Budget Advisory Committee, which was the first committee meeting where a 3% increase to fees was not assumed. Some good things and some less than good things came out of the meeting. They brought forward a 0% increase to athletics fee, though there will be another athletics fee to pay for the new Dalplex. Notably, the MFA was also not increased (this is a big fee, so no increase will mean savings for our students). Still, the residence, facilities renewal, admin services, college, and journalism course fees were recommended to increase by 3%. Additionally, undergraduate and graduate tuition fees were recommended to be increased by 3% as well. There will be consultation on these fees—Aidan says that consultation like this has been frustrating and unproductive in the past. Finally, following the sit-in at MLA Kelly Regan’s office, she organized a meeting with External VP Hannah Kaya and King’s President George Cooper to discuss the need for Bill 114 (the Safer Universities and Colleges Act). So far, no comments have been made on behalf of the university on this issue.
Grad Week update: nominations for valedictorian and honourary class president will be opening on Monday! A ballot box will be in the Wardroom!
Time for a distance report from Hannah Kaya, our External VP. Her report echoes sentiments about changeover and the sit-in at Kelly Regan’s office, and congratulates King’s Pride on a successful Pride Week.
Finally, Sofia, our Communications VP, is reporting. She is so thankful for her time this year.
10:55: ACTION ITEMS:
First, motions to impeach/accept the resignation of Kristen, our journalism rep, were defeated.
On to funding requests! The King’s Poetry Society was funded with $31.00 for snacks for their next meeting (Wednesday the 16th).
Next, the Young Alexandra Society is requesting $126.48 to fund decorations and cake for the Wardroom Birthday Party on March 26th. The motion passes!
Next, the CSP society is requesting $388.16 to host a thesis defence celebration event on March 18th. The funding will be allocated towards a cake, veggie and fruit platters, sweets, wine and cheese. The motion passes!
Finally, the Women’s Rugby Team has requested a $1000 travel bursary to help fund travel costs for their trip to a rugby tournament in Truro. The bursary would offset costs of the $350 registration fee, two car rentals, hotel rooms for around 10 players, and gas. They have also fundraised about $500, which Aidan thinks is great. Furthermore, Aidan mentions that we have only spent $600 of our $2000 travel bursary budget from this year, and it is a great opportunity to support student athletes. The motion passes!
11:05: NEW BUSINESS:
Aidan thanks the current executive for all the work that they have done over the past year.