University of Missouri

53-20: An Act to Amend Chapter V of the Bylaws

Missouri Students Association
University of Missouri

Bill 53-20


 PURPOSE: to adapt chapter five of the bylaws to make more transparent the process for the approval of the BEC Handbook

WHEREAS, chapter five does not include a timetable for the approval of the BEC handbook AND

WHEREAS, a safeguard is needed, in addition to making the process more fair to future slates, in order to ensure that slates have time to prepare for an MSA Presidential election AND

WHEREAS, adequate preparation time would not be available if the BEC Handbook were to finally pass in the month prior to the beginning of the election.

THEREFORE BE IT ENACTED BY THE MISSOURI STUDENTS ASSOCIATION that Chapter Five of the bylaws be amended to read as follows:

Chapter V

5.00 CHAPTER FIVE DEFINED – All rules for election laws shall be placed in this chapter of the bylaws.

5.10 GENERAL ELECTION OF THE MISSOURI STUDENTS ASSOCIATION – The date and time for the general election shall be outlined below.

(A) DATE OF ELECTION – The date of election shall be defined as the Tuesday during the election period.
(B) DATE AND TIME – The MSA general election of the President and Vice President shall take place fourteen days prior to the Tuesday of Thanksgiving Recess.  The election shall take place over forty-eight hours and shall begin at 5:00PM on the Monday prior to the date of election and shall end at 5:00PM on the Wednesday following the date of election.
(C) CHANGES OF THE DATE – The Senate, may by enactment, move the date of the election.  This move can occur no more than twenty days before the date of election.

(1) TECHNICAL FAILURE – If the general election fails due to technical reasons the date of the election shall be moved one calendar week later.
(2) EXTREME CIRCUMSTANCES – Extreme circumstances including, but not limited to, investigations against a particular slate are recognized as possible factors that may necessitate the delay of an election outside of the timeframe described above.  In cases where the BEC feels that a delay is necessary within one calendar week of the date of the election the BEC has the authority to postpone the date of election by one week.

(D) BEC HANDBOOK – The BEC shall create a handbook containing specific guidelines for the general election.  The handbook shall require approval of the Senate Operations Committee and then full Senate.  Once passed the handbook shall have the same authority as the bylaws.

(1) PASSAGE- The BEC shall present the Presidential handbook to full Senate during the first full Senate meeting of the Fall Semester.
(E) NOMINATION OF CANDIDATES – Guidelines for individuals wishing to become official candidates for the general election shall follow the guidelines below.

(1) NOMINATION OF SLATES – Candidates may be nominated as slates only, with each slate providing candidates for the office of the President and Vice President.  No candidate shall be placed on the ballot except upon filling petitions with the BEC on Election Form Nine containing the names, signatures, and student numbers of five hundred qualified voters of the association.  The only filing date shall the Thursday prior to the start of the soft campaign period.
(2) BEC/SLATE MEETING – All slates and the BEC shall meet in person to exchange materials.  The BEC shall provide the slates with one copy of each item: BEC Handbook, Student Court Handbook, Chapter V & VIII of the bylaws, M-Book, and Forms I-X.
(3) INSUFFICIENT SIGNATURES – Should a slate provide five hundred eligible signatures to the BEC and not all five hundred signatures are eligible voters the slate shall have forty-eight hours to provide the replacement signatures to the BEC.

(F) CAMPAIGN PRACTICES FOR GENERAL ELECTIONS – Guidelines for slates campaigning during the general election shall follow the guidelines below.

(1) PUBLIC APPEARANCES – No campaigning by public appearance at any meeting having a primary purpose that is the promotion of a candidate or slate shall take place prior to the start of the Hard Campaign period.
(2) LITERATURE DISTRIBUTION AND PURCHASING MEDIA – No campaigning by distribution of literature, or by use of purchased verbal or printed media shall take place prior to the submission of nominating petitions on the official filing date.
(3) WEBSITES – No campaigning, either by establishment of a campaign website or by advertisement of a campaign on a personal website, shall take place prior to the submission of nominating petitions on the official filing date.

(G) PROPERTY DESTRUCTION – Any slate, organization or individual campaigning in any election shall be responsible for damage to or defacement of another slate’s campaign materials committed by an individual or individuals involved with their own campaign.
(H) CAMPAIGN WORKERS – Campaign workers shall be defined as any person working towards an active goal of promoting a candidate or slate.

(I) FILING DATE AND ELECTION ADVISORY SESSION FOR GENERAL ELECTIONS – All rules associated with the filing date and preliminary BEC/Slate meeting shall follow the guidelines below.

(1) FILING DATE – The filing date shall be the Thursday prior to the start of the soft campaign period of the election. Candidates may not submit nominating petitions prior to or after this date. No new slates shall be allowed on the ballot following this date.
(2) ELECTION ADVISORY SESSION – Following the filing date and certification of nomination certificates, both members of a slate, and appropriate judicial parties shall meet together for an Election Advisory Session hosted by the BEC.

(i) The purpose of this session will be to inform all candidates, at-once, of general election rules and to clarify questions that candidates may have in an open setting among all slates.
(ii) A time will be selected by the BEC that accommodates the schedules of all appropriate parties, as determined by the BEC.  Appropriate parties may include, but are not limited to, the BEC Chair and Vice-Chairs, the MSA Chief Justice, a Student Legal Services lawyer, and each slate. This session shall occur within 14 days of nomination petition certification for all slates who have submitted petitions.
(iii) Candidates are still required to follow all rules outlined in these bylaws, the BEC handbook, and M Book prior to this meeting in accordance to the election.  Candidates may continue to contact the BEC with questions and requests for clarification prior to this session.
(iv) If no meeting time among all appropriate parties is available within the 14 day timeframe, the BEC shall host one-on-one sessions with each slate in lieu of this group session.

Respectfully Submitted,

Mitchel Moonier
Student Affairs Chairman

Ben Bolin
Operations Chairman

Ben Vega
Academic Affairs Chairman

Shelby Catalano
Budget Chairwoman