Constitution of the Associated Student Union

 

Constitution of the Associated Student Union

Preamble:  We, the students of Alverno Heights Academy, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, ensure diversity and sisterhood, provide for personal growth, promote equality, and secure the blessings of God to ourselves and our school, do ordain and establish this constitution for the Alverno Student Union.

ARTICLE I: LEGISLATIVE BRANCH

Section 1:  Structure

            All legislative powers herein will be vested in a Congress of the Student Union of Alverno Heights Academy, which will consist of a Senate and a House of Representatives. The Senate will consist of three elected representatives from each of the states.  The House of Representatives will consist of two representatives from each homeroom.

            The tenure of office for each Senator will be one complete academic year, commencing in September and ending in June.  The tenure of office for each Representative will be one semester. Both Senators and Representatives are eligible for re-election at the end of their respective terms of office.

            The President of the Senate will be the Vice President of the Student Union, who will vote in the Senate only in the case of a tie.  The members of the Senate will elect any other officers, or appoint any employees, they feel necessary to conduct business or to carry out Senate proceedings efficiently.  The members of the House of Representatives will elect a Speaker to preside over its meetings, as well as any other official(s); and appoint any employees, it deems necessary to carry out its business efficiently.

Section 2: Qualifications

            All requirements for eligibility to student office imposed by the Administration of Alverno Heights Academy will apply in the case of each legislator.

            Each Senator will be registered in the state she represents, and each Representative will be registered in the homeroom she represents.

            No legislator will hold any other government office, elected or appointed, during her tenure in Congress.

Section 3: Elections and Replacement of Vacancies

            Elections for members of the Senate will take place on the first Tuesday of May each year.  Elections for the House of Representatives will take place on the third Tuesday of September and the first Tuesday of February each year.

            Senators and Representatives will be elected only by the members of their respective constituencies. Polling places will be determined by the executive authority of each constituency.

            Each House of Congress will be the judge of the elections, returns, and qualifications of its own members, not otherwise stipulated by the Administration of Alverno Heights Academy.

            Should a vacancy occur in either house of Congress, the appropriate constituency will hold a special election (at a time and place deemed appropriate by the executive authority of same) to fill it, with all due haste.

Section 4: Duties

            Each house of Congress will meet at least twice per month at a time to be determined before the adjournment of the previous meeting.  No meeting of either house may be held in secret.  The initial meetings for each house will be held on the third Monday of the first September following the ratification of this Constitution.

            A simple majority of the members of each house of Congress will constitute a quorum for the transaction of business in each house.

            Each house of Congress will determine the rules and by laws for its proceedings, punish its members for disorderly conduct, and, with the concurrence of two thirds of its members, expel a member.

            Each house of Congress will keep a journal of its proceedings, and from time to time, publish the same, excepting such parts as may, in their judgment require secrecy; and the votes of the members of either house on any question shall, at the desire of one fifth of the members present, be entered in the journal.

            Meetings of each house of Congress will adjourn when a simple majority of the members present so move and confirm.

            The House of Representatives shall have the duty, when necessary, to impeach members of the executive and judicial branches of the government of the Student Union.  No person shall be impeached without the concurrence of a simple majority of the members present.

            The Senate shall have the duty, after the House of Representatives has impeached an officer or justice of the Student Union, to try the impeachment.  When sitting for that purpose, they shall be on oath or affirmation.  When the President of the Student Union is tried, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court shall preside.  And no person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two thirds of the members present.

            The Senate shall also have the duty to meet for the express purpose of deciding the nomination of executive officers and Supreme Court justices appointed by the President of the Student Union.  No appointment shall be confirmed without the concurrence of two thirds of the members present.

Section 5: Procedure in Passing Bills or Resolutions

            Every bill which has passed the House of Representatives and the Senate will, before it becomes a law, be presented to the Alverno Student Union President; if she approves, she shall sign it, but if not, she will return it with her objections to that house in which it originated.  Said house will enter the objections in its journal and proceed to reconsider it.

            If after such reconsideration, two thirds of that house agrees to pass the bill, it will be sent, together with the objections, to the other house, in which it will likewise be reconsidered, and if approved by two thirds of that house, it shall become law.

            If any bill is not returned by the President within ten school days after it has been presented to her, the same will become law (as if she had signed it), unless Congress, by its own action, prevents its return, in which case it shall not become law.

            Every bill, order, resolution, or vote for which the concurrence of both houses is necessary will be presented to the Student Union President of Alverno Heights Academy; and before the same can take effect, it will be approved by her, or if disapproved by her, it will be repassed by two thirds of both houses, according to the procedure in passing bills, orders and resolutions.

Section 6: Powers

Congress will have the power to:

  1.      Lay and collect taxes, duties, excises, to pay the debts and provide for the general welfare of the students of Alverno Heights Academy;
  2.      To regulate commerce with external institutions and businesses, and among the several states;
  3.      To constitute tribunals inferior to the Supreme Court;
  4.      To establish police forces to execute the laws of the Student Union;
  5.      To exercise exclusive legislation in all cases involving Student Union jurisdiction and properties;
  6.      To institute impeachment proceedings against, and conduct subsequent trials for, executive officers of the Student Union;
  7.      Make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers, and all other powers vested by this constitution in the government of the Student Union of Alverno Heights Academy, or in any department or officer thereof.

ARTICLE II: EXECUTIVE BRANCH

Section 1: Structure

            The executive power will be vested in a President of the Student Union of Alverno Heights Academy.  She will serve for a period of one year, and be eligible for one re-election, or a maximum of two years in office.

            Subordinate executive authority will be vested in a Vice President, subject to the same tenure of office as the President.

            All requirements for eligibility to student offices imposed by the Administration of Alverno Heights Academy will apply in the case of each executive officer.

            The President, Vice President, and any other officer of the Student Union of Alverno Heights Academy, shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of, any high crime or misdemeanor.

Section 2: Duties

            She shall from time to time give to Congress information of the state of the Student Union, and recommend to their consideration such measures as she shall judge necessary and expedient.

            She may, on extraordinary occasions, convene both houses of Congress, or either of them, and in case of disagreement between them, with respect to the time of adjournment, she may adjourn them to such time as she shall think proper.

            She shall receive distinguished visitors and other public ministers.

            She shall take care that the laws of the Student Union be faithfully executed.

            She shall commission all executive officers of the Student Union

Section 3: Powers

            She shall be Commander in Chief of the Police Forces of both the Student Union government and of the several state governments when they are called into the service of the Student Union at large.

            She will act according to the written advisement of the principal officer in each of the executive departments, upon any subject relating to the duties of their respective offices.

            She shall have the power to grant reprieves and pardons for offenses against the laws of the Student Union, except in cases of impeachment.

            She shall nominate and, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, shall appoint ministers and consuls, justices of the Supreme Court, and all other officers of the Student Union, whose appointments are not herein otherwise provided for (but Congress may by law vest the appointment of such inferior officers, as they think proper, in the President alone, in the courts of law, or in the heads of departments).

ARTICLE III: JUDICIAL BRANCH

Section 1: Structure

            The judicial power of the Student Union of Alverno Heights Academy shall be vested in one Supreme Court, and in such inferior courts as Congress may from time to time ordain and establish.

Section 2: Selection of Justices and Tenure of Office

            Justices of the Supreme Court, and any inferior courts, shall be appointed by the President of the Student Union of Alverno Heights Academy, with the approval of 2/3 of the Senate.

            There shall be two associate justices from each state, and one Chief Justice (who may be from any of the four states).

            The Chief Justice must have served at least one year on the bench of the Supreme Court as an associate justice before she is eligible for appointment as Chief Justice.

            The justices, both of the Supreme Court and inferior courts, shall hold their offices during good behavior, and will be held to the highest moral standards.  Any justice of the Supreme Court shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of, any high crime or misdemeanor.  A justice may voluntarily and permanently retire from the bench at any time, at her own discretion.

            All requirements for eligibility to student office imposed by the Administration of Alverno Heights Academy will apply in the case of each justice.

Section 3: Jurisdiction

            The Supreme Court shall have original jurisdiction in all cases involving the violation(s) of Student Union statutes, conflicts between states, conflicts between the citizen(s) of one state and the citizen(s) of another, and conflicts between a state and the citizen(s) of another.

            The Supreme Court shall have appellate jurisdiction in all cases referred to it from inferior courts (at the discretion of the Supreme Court).

            Inferior courts shall have original jurisdiction in all other matters not already specified herein.

ARTICLE IV: STATES

Section 1: Structure of Government

            The legislative authority of the states shall be vested in an Assembly for each state consisting of nine representatives.

            The executive authority of each state shall be vested in a Governor, a Lt. Governor, and any officers necessary to carry out the various departmental responsibilities of the state.

            Judicial authority shall be vested in Superior Courts, with justices appointed by the Governor of the state.

            All requirements for eligibility to student office imposed by the Administration of Alverno Heights Academy will apply in the case of each state legislator, executive officer, or any other servant of state government.

Section 2: Privileges and Immunities

            Full faith and credit shall be given in each state to the public acts, records and judicial proceedings of the other state.

            The citizens of each state shall be entitled to all privileges and immunities of citizens in the Student Union of Alverno Heights Academy, and to certain inalienable rights determined and defined by the status of each state.

            A person charged in one state with felony or other crime, who shall have been promoted to the next state, shall on demand of the executive authority of the state from which she was promoted, be delivered up to be removed to the state having jurisdiction of the crime.

ARTICLE V: AMENDMENT PROCEDURES

            Congress, whenever two thirds of both houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose amendments to this constitution.

            Amendments will be incorporated into this constitution upon ratification of three states by simple majority in each state.

ARTICLE VI: AUTHORITY AND OATHS

            This constitution, and the laws of the Student Union of Alverno Heights Academy which shall be made in pursuance thereof, and all contracts made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the Student Union of Alverno Heights Academy, shall be the supreme law of said student union; and the government officials in each state shall be bound thereby, anything in the constitution or laws of any state to the contrary notwithstanding.

            The senators and representatives before mentioned, and the members of each state assembly, and all executive and judicial officers, both of the Student Union of Alverno Heights Academy and its states, shall be bound by oath or affirmation to support this constitution.

ARTICLE VII: RATIFICATION

            The ratification of the conventions of three states shall be sufficient for the establishment of this constitution between the states so ratifying the same.

Amendments to the Constitution

The First Amendments to the Constitution were ratified on May 20, 1991.

Amendment I

Section 1:   The House of Representatives will be combined with the Senate which will then act as the sole Federal legislative body.

Section 2:  The number of elected Senators per state will remain unchanged, and the senators elected will assume the responsibilities of Representatives of the House.

Section 3:   The combined Houses will be called Congress.

Amendment II           

Congress shall pass no laws prohibiting the free exercise of religion, speech, press, petition, assembly, or dress.

Amendment III Article III, Section 2: In lieu of one year on the bench of the Supreme Court, the nominee for Chief Justice must have served at least one year in an elected government position at Alverno Heights Academy. In addition, she must have at least one year of membership in an affiliated club or organization at Alverno Heights Academy. Amendments IV through VIII were ratified on May 29, 1993.

Amendment IV

Amendment: Luxury Tax

Section 1: A luxury tax must be paid when a state spends money from their treasury on leisure activities.

Section 2: when a state spends more than $200 on oneself a 30% tax will be charged.

Section 3: the amount that the state has to pay had to be donated to a charity of their choice.

Amendment V

The congress shall write a record book keeping all of the bills either passed or not passed, recorded in that book from now on and that book shall be placed in the library for keeping.

Amendment VI

Let it be known that the requirements for presidency and vice presidency of the Alverno Student Union are this: Must have attended Alverno for 2 years and been a member of the ASU or an executive of state government. Vice Presidency: must have attended Alverno for 2 years and been a member of the Congress of Alverno or as an assemblywoman of a state legislative branch.

Amendment VII

Process for determining winner of the Spirit of Flag is as follows:

  1.     A panel made up of any 3 of the following: Director of College Counseling, Director of Development, Registrar, Librarian, Director of Admissions, Campus Minister or Administrator.
  2.     To judge the competition and to render their decision no later than dismissal on the day of the competition.

Amendment VIII

The supreme court of the Associated Student Union of Alverno Heights Academy shall consist of 2 justices appointed by the President of ASU and confirmed by Congress. The Supreme Court and a grand jury selected by random will convene to hear all court cases involving students at Alverno Heights Academy.

Rationale for Amendment: The size of the Supreme Court was hindrance to the function of the judicial system of the ASU. Matters commanding the Supreme Court’s time did not require the attention of the 5 justices. In the place of the 5 justices there will be 2 presiding justices and grand jury to be selected at random from the student body.

Amendment IX:

Section 1: In reference to Article II, Section 3 of the Alverno Heights Academy Constitution, the ASU President will no longer have the title of Commander in Chief of Police Forces and will, alternatively, hold the title of Commander in Chief.

Section 2: The powers described in Article II, Section 3 will remain the same and belong to ASU President.

Amendment X:

Section 1: The eighth amendment to the Constitution of Alverno Heights Academy is hereby repealed. The Supreme Court will have nine members; two per state and three seniors, one senior with prior experience on the court being elected Chief Justice.

Section 2: The president will nominate members to the Supreme Court. Supreme Court and Congress will interview and confirm new justices to the Supreme Court.

Amendment XI:

Section 1: Effective starting in the Fall of 2017: Congress will have nine members; two per state, and the President of Congress will be the elected Vice President of ASU.

Amendment XII:

Section 1: ASU will be solely responsible for selecting judges and proctors for events run and sponsored by ASU. In addition to the seventh amendment, the following restrictions will apply to acceptable judges: may be staff members, directors, or administration who are not government moderators nor teach in the core school curriculum.

Amendment XIII:

Section 1: No person, state, or governing entity shall be held to answer for a violation of this constitution or any state constitution, unless on an indictment of the Supreme Court or a Grand Jury of their peers; nor shall any person, state, or governing entity be subject for the same offence to double jeopardy of repercussion; nor shall she be compelled in any case to be a witness against herself, nor be deprived of freedoms, property, position, or funds, without due process of law.

Section 2: Due process shall include, but is not limited to, rights to the following:

  •    To be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation with two weeks’ notice prior to a public trial.
  •   To have the assistance of counsel chosen from her peers for her defense.
  •    To be confronted with witnesses against her and to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in her favor.

 

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