SGA pushes executive branch to gain new certifications

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Northern Star File Photo

The Student Government Association is located in the Holmes Student Center ground floor in the OASIS space.

By Evan Mellon, Senior News Reporter

DeKALB – The Student Government Association passed a bill immediately requiring members of the executive branch to complete the Illinois Open Meetings Act training to become OMA certified.

The Open Meetings Act is a law requiring public bodies to provide information regarding their meetings to the general public.

The OMA states that when a public body holds a meeting, they must give advance notice and allow citizens to attend the meeting.

Prior to this bill, only SGA members of the senate branch were required to be OMA certified. This bill adds OMA certification training to SGA bylaws as a requirement for the members of the executive branch.

“Executive branch members are only required to complete the training once during their term in office,” the bill reads.

“This should already be a requirement,” said Deputy Speaker of the Senate Ethan DeMeuse. “If you Google who is required to take OMA training, it says ‘any elected or appointed position in a public body.’ The entire executive branch falls under that category.”

The act will take effect during the commencement of the 2023 SGA election cycle, affecting the 55th session senate but not the current senate.

The SGA also passed a bill adding seats to the senate in order to better reflect NIU enrollment data for graduate students. According to the bill, graduate enrollment is the determiner for the senate seat distribution.

The bill adds two seats to the senate for the graduate college, which represents NIU’s graduate students. Additionally, the bill adds an additional seat for the College of Law, the university at-large position and a seat for the underserved student communities position.

SGA meetings are open to the public and held weekly at NIU, with locations posted in the senate’s agendas. SGA minutes and intent to speak forms are available online.