University of Missouri

49-85: An Act to Create The Office of the Amicus Curiae

Missouri Students Association

University of Missouri

Bill 49-85

AN ACT TO CREATE THE OFFICE OF THE AMICUS CURIAE

Purpose: To create a new position within the Association both to prosecute cases in the Association’s Student Court, as well as to assist the student population at-large

Short title: The Amicus Curiae Act of 2010

Whereas, Chapter 3 of the Association bylaws specifically reference a “public prosecutor” as well as a “public defender” position, and

Whereas, No such positions currently exist within the Association, and

Whereas, Such a position could be useful for prosecuting cases involving egregious and damaging violations of the Association bylaws, thereby maintaining the integrity of the Association, and

Whereas, Such a position could also be called upon for defense in cases in the student court, and

Whereas, Such a position could furthermore serve as an advisor for students who are in the campus discipline process as each student going through the process has the right to an advisor, and

Whereas, Student Legal Services supports the idea of this position, and has agreed to advise and train any person serving in this position to ensure that the office is legitimate and can provide sound council.

THEREFORE BE IT ENACTED BY THE MISSOURI STUDENTS ASSOCIATION SENATE that for the good of the Association, and for the good of the Student Body at large, portions of Chapter 8 of the Association bylaws be amended as follows:

            8.30 – Office of the Amicus Curiae (AC)

(A)   Definition – The office of the Amicus Curiae, hereafter referred to as the AC, shall serve to prosecute matters of grave importance to the Association before the MSA Student Court, specifically involving misuse of Association funds, or any case that would affect the integrity of the association. Furthermore the AC shall serve as an advisor to students going through the Office of Student Conduct for alleged violation of University Policy.

(B)   Authorization – The office of the AC’s authority is derived from members of the Association through the passage of the concurrent legislation in the Senate, which depends on the signature of the President, and is subject to review of the Student Court. The AC shall have the following authority

  1. File suits and/or prosecute cases before the MSA Student Court along the guidelines mentioned in subsection (A)
  2. Represent the Association any time it is a party, be it plaintiff or defendant, in the Student Court
  3. Issue non-binding opinions on or interpretations of proposed bills and language within them
  4. Act as an advisor to any student going through the Student Conduct process

(C)   REQUIREMENTS

  1. The AC shall be a student at the University of Missouri, either undergraduate, graduate, or professional
  2. If the AC is an undergraduate, they shall at least have attained Sophomore standing
  3. The AC shall have a GPA of at least 2.3
  4. The AC shall be approved by Student Legal Services before final confirmation

(D)   Appointment – Applicants shall submit their letters of intent for the position to the President, or President-Elect depending on when the position is to be filled. The President or President-Elect shall then appoint an applicant for the position at their discretion. The appointee must then be interviewed and approved by Student Legal Services. The appointee must then be confirmed by full senate and sworn in before their term officially begins.

(E)    Term of Office – The Term of office for the AC shall be concurrent with the term of the President, beginning at the start of the spring semester and ending at the conclusion of the fall semester.

(F)    Vacancy – Should a vacancy arise the office is to be filled in the manner described in section 8.30 (C)

(G)   Duties- The Office of the AC shall have the following Duties

  1. File suits and/or prosecute cases before the MSA Student Court along the guidelines mentioned in subsection (A)
  2. Represent the Association any time it is a party, be it plaintiff or defendant, in the Student Court
  3. Issue non-binding opinions on or interpretations of proposed bills and language within them
  4. Act as an advisor to any student going through the Student Conduct Process
  5. Communicate via meeting or otherwise at least once a month with the Office of the Inspector General to ensure cooperation, as the charge of both offices involves the integrity of the Association. The AC shall use their discretion, but take into careful consideration filing a suit if it is deemed necessary following an investigation

(H)   Removal from office – The procedure for Removal from office shall be the same as the one outlined for the President and Vice-President in Section 1.70 (A) and (B)

(I)      Limited Authority Clause – The AC shall not be affiliated in any capacity with any case heard in the Missouri Students Association Student Court in which the Missouri Students Association is not either the plaintiff or the defendant. This includes cases in which Entities of MSA such as the BEC are on trial.

(J)      TRAINING AND ADVISEMENT CLAUSE – The AC upon taking office must be trained by Student Legal Services in basic law principles and the Student Conduct process as outlined in the M-Book. The AC will continue to be advised by Student Legal Services throughout their term.

Respectfully Submitted,

Evan Wood, Senate Speaker

Josh Travis,  Fmr. Operations Chair

Justin Mohn, Operations Chair

Amanda Shelton, Former MSA Speaker

Mahir Khan, Student Affairs

Michelle Horan, Student Affairs

Jonathan Cleair, Student Affairs