Council counters motions on new spiritual life position


New York, NEW YORK--Members of The King’s Council considered twenty-five new amendments to the council’s constitution during their weekly meeting in the Founder’s room Wednesday evening.

Council members discussed the amendments one by one. Some passed unanimously including the motion requiring a minimum GPA of 2.5 for Cabinet members and a second prohibiting Cabinet members from holding leadership positions in other student organizations.

Others required more time and deliberation, among them, the motion recommended by Ten Boom President, Rosalind Mirabito. She proposed a new Cabinet position: a Director of Spiritual Life. The student appointed would serve as a liaison between the Spiritual Life Committee and the King’s Council, and work to streamline communication between the spiritual life representatives of each House, improve the management of various administrative tasks and support the mission of the King’s Cabinet.

While some members supported the motion, Churchill President Robert DeWitt raised questions about its necessity. “What is the added value?” he challenged.

Others asked for clarification about whether the position would require a signed statement of faith, whether a detailed job description had been written and who the Director of Spiritual Life would report to. DeWitt eventually proposed countering the motion. Other members seconded his call, which means the Council will deliberate on this motion at its next meeting.

The only amendment rejected was the one addressing the responsibilities of the Director of Finance. The Council’s current Director of Finance, Joanne Vo, explained that the motion’s goal was to clarify the responsibilities associated with her role. She added that, even though her job is ostensibly to work with the Council and the Office of Advancement, she has been asked to help fundraise for different Houses. But other members of the Council voiced concern that the new wording would actually limit the Director’s role. Fileta later explained to the Tribune that the pushback -- and the motion’s eventual denial -- came from a misunderstanding about wording; the motion has gone back to the Constitutional Revision Committee for clarification.

The meeting ended with an agreement to table a motion about the Director of Student Events Coordinator regulations. Fileta, on behalf of the current director Stefanie Gardner, proposed that the Director of Student Events no longer seek event approval from the Council, but from an advisory board of “peers.” Gardner supported her argument by saying that it would be good for students who are interested in event planning to be involved in the discussions of an advisory board, which would lift the burden on Council members in the process.

But DeWitt challenged the idea. “[It] seems like the Director [would be] the only person in authority over themselves,” he said.

Associate Dean of Students, Shelli Cline also voiced strong disagreement. She argued that theoretically the committee could decide to have kegs at the next Fall Picnic if the Council no longer had jurisdiction over the event. Barton President Cooper Crouch echoed that concern, urging instead for a system of “checks and balances.”

DeWitt proposed a table, which was unanimously supported. The council will deliberate on all countered amendments at their meeting next Wednesday. Meetings are held in the Founder's Room at 5:30 p.m. and are open to the public.