MUSG minutes to be posted publicly

MUSG+held+a+virtual+debate+Sunday+afternoon+between+its+two+tickets+for+MUSG+President+and+Executive+Vice+President.

Photo by Jordan Johnson

MUSG held a virtual debate Sunday afternoon between its two tickets for MUSG President and Executive Vice President.

Marquette University Student Government has begun and will continue posting the minutes of its meetings regularly on its SharePoint site accessible through MUSG’s website. This development comes after roughly a year during which the minutes were not publicly available on MUSG’s website, as they had been until April 2018.

Minutes are essentially a documented record of everything discussed and stated over the course of a meeting.

Meeting minutes from April 2018 to April 2019 were made officially available on MUSG’s website yesterday. However, minutes from meetings after April 8, 2019, have yet to be uploaded.

Executive Vice President and senior in the College of Arts & Sciences Dan Brophy said this break was the result of miscommunication.

“During meetings, the legislative clerk records and later transcribes everything said. After, the legislative vice president reviews (the minutes) and posts them on our website,” Brophy said. “Last year, the minutes were placed in the incorrect folder on MUSG’s SharePoint site. … The MUSG executive board never made a decision not to have them (publicly available).”

SharePoint, an extension of Microsoft Office, is a document management program MUSG utilizes to display information to the Marquette community.

Instead of the folder open to the public containing legislation and the MUSG constitution, the minutes were placed in a private folder accessible only by the student senate.

“Once that issue was pointed out, the minutes were moved to the correct folder,” Brophy said.

To view minutes of meetings, anyone interested can access MUSG’s SharePoint site though a link provided on the Student Senate page listed under the “About” tab on MUSG’s website.

When the previous legislative vice president resigned during the 2018-19 academic year for personal reasons, Brophy said details on how and where to post the minutes were not passed along to the next LVP, which was Brophy. After Brophy was elected executive vice president last spring and the current LVP, senior in the College of Engineering Peter Feider, transitioned into the role, these instructions again were not given.

Brophy said meeting minutes are important for a variety of reasons, such as upholding MUSG’s attendance policy, updating absent students or MUSG members and referencing any relevant past information.

“None of these minutes are or ever have been confidential,” Feider said in an email.

Though the minutes were not listed on MUSG’s website over the past year, Feider said any student could have requested the minutes from the legislative clerk or himself if they wanted to, and the minutes would have been provided reasonably quickly.

“Furthermore, since I have joined the organization in spring 2018, all MUSG senate meetings have been open to the public for people to attend, ask questions, and participate in the discussion,” Feider said in an email.

The current legislative clerk, junior in the College of Arts & Sciences Chris Ibitoye, did not respond to the Wire’s request for comment.

This story was written by Nicole Laudolff. She can be reached at nicole.laudolff@marquette.edu.