SGA members debate two constitution-altering bills in meeting

Update at 12:55 p.m on Nov. 7, 2017: Sidelines incorrectly reported that SGA members passed the two bills discussed in the meeting. The bills were simply debated in the meeting. Sidelines regrets the error. 

Photo by Ethan Clark / MTSU Sidelines

Members of Middle Tennessee State University’s Student Government Association met Thursday afternoon in the Parliamentary Room of the Student Union Building to debate and pass two bills that will alter the SGA constitution.

One bill, introduced by Sen. Nathan Watkins, would create an impeachment process for members of SGA’s executive board. Once members vote to impeach a board member, a special committee will oversee the process.

Senators felt compelled to create the bill after an election scandal occurred last year, in which two members of SGA’s executive board were impeached for alleged campaign violations. The former executive vice president dropped the charges.

The bill, upon passing, will not take effect until the end of the spring 2018 term.

“This is not a bill to attack anybody on the executive board now,”  Watkins said. “This is just something that should’ve been in our constitution that was left out on accident.”

The second bill, introduced by Sen. Dalton Slatton, expands the powers of the SGA attorney general. Under the current constitution, the attorney general only has power to oversee campus parking issues. Slatton’s bill will allow the attorney general to investigate SGA members and to take a more active role in overseeing the organization. Hannah Leyhew is the current SGA attorney general.

“I don’t expect it to be used very often,” Slatton said. “But, it is going to allow (Leyhew) to interpret the constitution and help the executive board and the legislative branch in the senate to determine what’s constitutional and what’s not constitutional, which I think is something we need.”

MTSU’s SGA meets every Thursday at 4:30 p.m. in the Parliamentary Room of the Student Union Building. Sidelines broadcasts the meetings on Facebook. 

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