15 AF1 USI Financial Transparency

Congress Believes:

That financial transparency for the Union of Students in Ireland will strengthen the Organisation and also allow students engage more functionally and effectively

Congress Further believes:

That members have a right to have easy access to such documents .

Congress Mandates:

The USI President to ask Finance committee to release Financial accounts and be viewable online by all students of Member Organisations.

 

14 AF 1     FINANCIAL REPORTING FOR LARGE-SCALE EVENTS

Congress believes:

Transparency in the financial dealings of the Union of Students in Ireland is of paramount importance.

Congress also believes:

That this transparency is particularly important in relation to large-scale high-cost events organised by USI.

Congress notes with approval:

The presentation on the finances of the USI offered by the General Manager at National Council each year and the further presentation by finance committee at congress.

Congress asserts:

That every effort should be made to ensure financial transparency and that Member Organisations should be entitled to input before decisions regarding the budgets of large scale events are made.

Congress therefore mandates:

That the President present a projected budget for large scale events, including but not limited to Pink Training, SUT, and Congress to a National Council prior to the event for discussion.

Congress further mandates:

That the President present an actual budget for large scale events, including but not limited to Pink Training, SUT and Congress to the first National council after the event as an item for discussion.

14 AF 2     USI FIVE-YEAR FINANCIAL PLAN

Congress notes:

Congress policy 13/A&F2, which calls for a five-year financial plan for USI to be presented to Congress 2014, to include a review of the affiliation fee structure and an aim to reduce affiliation fee dependence through increased income generation from other sources.

Congress further notes:

The USI Income Diversification Strategy, and reforms recommended by Finance Committee to enable tighter USI budgeting, passed by National Council this year.

Congress believes:

That it is a prudent and sensible approach for USI to regularly review financial strategy, and to plan ahead in terms of budgetary projections. This should include the development of a reserves

policy and commercial strategy for USI, as well as identifying potential cost reductions.

Congress approves:

The Five-Year Financial Plan presented to Congress by the USI President.

Congress mandates:

The USI President to endeavour to implement this Plan, and meet the targets set out.

Congress further mandates:

The President to present an update on the implementation of this Plan at USI Annual Congress, and bring any proposed amendments or changes in strategy to the Plan to Congress for approval.

 

14 AF 3     USI INCOME DIVERSIFICATION STRATEGY

Congress welcomes:

The engagement of Venture Advancement to develop an Income Diversification Strategy for USI, subsequently approved by USI National Council.

Congress notes:

The existence of USI Member Services Ltd. as a vehicle for commercial projects and activity undertaken by USI outside of its core representative work.

Congress believes:

The implementation of this strategy and the initial recommended projects is fundamentally important to the future development of USI, in terms of meeting strategic financial targets, adding value to USI membership through the provision of services, and working towards the reduction in USI affiliation fees.

Congress approves:

  • The USI Income Diversification Strategy
  • The development of a web platform for a USI online ‘Student Shop’
  • A joint venture with Green IT for the sale of discounted refurbed laptops to students
  • The ‘USI Extra’ Card

Congress mandates:

The USI President to take responsibility for the implementation of USI’s Income Diversification Strategy and commercial targets, including the successful rollout of the approved projects.

 

14 AF 5     COMPENSATION OF IRISH OFFICER

Congress notes the importance of the Irish language:

Congress further notes the effort and commitment of the VP for the Irish Language in USI.

Congress is concerned:

That the work of the VP for the Irish Language is uncompensated with the exception of expenses and that this is the only unpaid position on USI officer board.

Congress recognises:

That expenses are not paid until the end of the month and can leave the officer out of pocket or unable to do the job. In addition there is a significantly reduced level of accountability on the officer based on the fact that they are not paid.

Congress further recognises:

The fact that the VP for the Irish Language is likely to be based out of the main office and this is likely to be a deterrent to applicants who could not afford to take up the position.

Congress acknowledges:

That changing this state of affairs would require a USI constitutional amendment.

Congress therefore mandates:

That the USI President investigates the possibility of providing part-time pay to the VP for Irish Language.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

13 AF 1          MOTION TO INTRODUCE INCREASED USI FINANCE COMMITTEE TRANSPARENCY

Congress notes:

The significant responsibility that USI Finance Committee has towards the organization and the powers it holds under the constitution including:

  • The drafting of the USI Annual Budget
  • Regulation of Officerboard’s terms and conditions of employment
  • The setting of expense rates

Congress further notes:

The inadequacy of a brief annual update on USI Finances to Member Organisations.

Congress also notes:

The responsible decisions made by USI Finance Committee and the need to maintain confidentiality in relation to certain decisions.

Congress therefore mandates:

The President a quarterly update to National Council and to provide members of National Council with Agenda and Minutes of its meetings. Congress recognises that certain Agenda items and Minutes may be withheld due to being sensitive in nature.

 

13 AF 2          MOTION ON COST OF USI AFFILIATION FEES

Congress notes:

The dependence of USI on affiliation fees, amounting to 99.8% of the organisation’s income in 11/12.

Congress believes:

It is prudent for the organisation and a duty to its Member Organisations to regularly conduct a comprehensive review of affiliation fees and financial strategy.

Congress believes

It is equally important that students feel USI represents value for their money.

Congress mandates:

The USI President commence a financial review of the organisation and the production of a five year financial plan to be presented to Congress 2014. This review must at a minimum:

  • Review the system of charging Member Organisations a charge per student regardless of size, student numbers and other criteria taken into account by other National Student Union

 

  • Seek to reduce the affiliation fees charged by USI to Students’ Unions/student members.
  • Aim to reduce dependence on affiliation fees through increasing other income sources

13 AF 3          MOTION TO ESTABLISH WORKING GROUP TO INVESTIGATE COST OF CONGRESS

Congress notes:

The significant cost of Congress to Member Organisations and the economic limitations facing Students’ Unions.

Congress therefore mandates:

The President to establish a working group to investigate the costs of Congress and identify areas or actions which may result in savings for MOs.

The taskforce will invite the following individuals to participate:

  • USI President
  • USI General Manager
  • 1 Member of Finance Committee
  • 2 Members of National Council
  • 1 Representative of Universities