Executive Board

Process for handling conflicts of interest codified in new policy

By Jonathan Caicedo March 28, 2018

Vice President of the Union Rasika Ekhalikar ’18 opened the March 22 meeting of the Executive Board with three major items on the agenda. UPAC Lights and the RPI Flying Club came before the board with proposals, and further discussion was had on the Board’s Conflict of Interest Policy, which was subsequently passed unanimously with a vote of 13-0-0.

UPAC Lights’ Chair Justin Johnson ’20 came before the Board asking for a budget reallocation for the purchase of new intelligent lighting fixtures to update their current set.

Johnson explained that “[their] current lighting fixtures were purchased close to 30 years ago, and are no longer the standard in lighting they once were.” This purchase is part of an ongoing process to improve their stage lighting and the level of service they are able to provide to clubs. In addition to the estimated $825 allocation, UPAC Lights would also use their gift fund to purchase the lighting fixtures. The Board approved the reallocation into UPAC Lights’ reserve account with a unanimous vote of 13-0-0.

Next, RPI Flying Club representative Freddie Hole ’18 requested $4,000 from the Union’s travel contingency fund to bring eight members to The National Intercollegiate Flying Association’s SAFECON 2018 in Terre Haute, Indiana. While the total cost of the trip exceeds $10,000, the Union will subsidize travel up to $4,000. Hole explained that the $10,000 would cover aircraft rentals, conference fees, hotels, and a rental van for members not flying. The rest of the $6,000 not covered by travel contingencies will come from their existing allocated budget for this competition. The Board approved the reallocation unanimously 13-0-0.

Finally, Policies Committee Chair Anissa Choiniere ’20 presented the Board’s Conflict of Interest Policy. As Choiniere explained, this policy is the culmination of de facto procedures and policies the Board has been following that do not exist in an official document. The policy defines what a “conflict of interest” is to the Board, and describes the procedures to be followed when a conflict is presented. A motion to pass the Conflict of Interest Policy also passed unanimously 13-0-0. The policy can be found at poly.rpi.edu/s/conflict.

The Executive Board meets Thursdays at 8 pm in the Shelnutt Gallery of the Rensselaer Union.