AGM discusses finances, motions, and agenda
By Cazzy Lewchuk, Staff Writer
The Douglas Students’ Union (DSU) held its annual general meeting (AGM) on February 6. The meeting was held on the upper floor of the student union building located at the New Westminster campus. A full agenda was announced and approved, along with a finance report, introduction of representatives, and a question and answer period.
The AGM was emceed by Jesse Stamberg, internal relations coordinator for the DSU. In addition to his leadership, the chair for the meeting was represented by Zachary Crispin, the BC representative on the national executive of the Canadian Federation of Students. An auditor was also called in to release the official financial report of the previous year.
The DSU reported an unqualified financial audit, meaning that they are in a good position financially due to secure investments made in the last year; one notable example of such investments was the changing of the student health plan provider. It also means the union has spent and balanced the entire allotted budget, and did not record a deficit.
Unlike some previous meetings, there were no irregularities or bylaw changes presented. Consequently, there were no votes carried out. This is a major reason for the short length of the meeting, which lasted just over 30 minutes. The only motion that was discussed was the appointment of the financial auditor, and the membership approved the appointment of Tompkins Wozny Miller and Co. for the fiscal school year of September 2013 – August 2014.
Student turnout at the AGM was lower than expected, with only about 35 students attending, in addition to the DSU staff. An annual report was circulated to all attendees, which detailed many of the events organized by the DSU. A letter from the union was also included, outlining its successful year in providing better finances, events, campaigns, and facilities.
Despite the low attendance and quick finish, most DSU representatives felt the meeting was a success. Stamberg stated that “the general feel of the meeting was great. We felt very positive and proud of all the accomplishments we were reporting on from the past year. It went very smoothly, as expected.”
The end of the meeting included a question-and-answer period from the students to the DSU staff. Many questions about what the DSU has done and continues to do were answered. Several misconceptions were cleared up, such as on what the DSU has control over and how the union is distinct from Douglas College.
Tim Rattel, executive director of the DSU, stated “We were very happy that so many people were asking questions.”