Also at the BOT meeting: Resolution passed to keep only formal sessions open to the public

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The Oakland Post

By Kaylee Kean

In addition to the tuition increase, the Board of Trustees passed a resolution “supporting that only formal sessions of the Oakland University Board of Trustees be open to the public.”

This was quickly passed at the July 7 meeting. It will allow the Board to hold “informal” sessions that are closed off from public view and participation.

The meeting’s agenda, located at www.oakland.edu/bot, introduces this resolution by briefly discussing Michigan’s House Joint Resolution (HJR) O, which seeks to further clarify how Michigan’s institutions of higher education keep meetings open to the public. Michigan’s constitution  has currently phrased that “formal sessions” shall be open to the public, but HJR would have this amended to  the more general “meetings”.

“Whereas, in fulfilling its mission, the Board encounters many issues that need to be discussed, at least in part, out of the public’s view to encourage the candid and free exchange of views or to protect sensitive and competitive information,” reads part of the resolution. It also states that the inability to meet in private informal meetings would have a “deleterious effect on the Board’s ability to provide effective governance” of OU.

The Oakland Post will develop a more thorough story on House Joint Resolution O, Michigan’s constitution, and how OU’s Board of Trustees fits into this legislature.