Letter to the editor – Mar. 15, 2012

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I was fascinated to find that the newly created Canadian Federation of Students [CFS] Liaison Director is not a position being contested in the 2012 URSU election. The preamble to the motion promised students transparency and accountability through an elected representative, but how can this transparency be provided without an election?  The Carillon paraphrases Kent Peterson as saying the position would be “an elected representative.” It would be interesting to know who made this decision, because according to the URSU Board Chair, there has not been a motion made or approved by the board of directors. 

This is not the only issue with the current election.  Several provisions of the election bylaws were contravened and later amended.  The claim is no one noticed that the election bylaw requires the chief returning officer to be a member of URSU.

It’s quite embarrassing that no member of the board or executive, including those who were tasked with reviewing the bylaw as part of the electoral reform commission, understood what the bylaw said. 

The current URSU President is using his position to virtually endorse one set of candidates for executive at the expense of other slates and independent candidates. He has done this through his official Twitter account, which he claims personal ownership over.

However, URSU used your money to advertise and gain followers for it.  He also did this in his last president’s report in the Carillon.  
Kent Peterson is also seeking re-election to the U of R senate, which comes with a free parking pass, even though the minutes show he missed at least 50 per cent of the meetings that he was eligible to attend this year (according to another senator he has not been at either meeting this year; no minutes are posted so I am unable to confirm this).  To paraphrase the late Jack Layton, in the real world, when someone misses 100 per cent of their work, they don’t deserve to be re-elected.

Mike Burton
Contributor

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