A Charity Commission spokesperson said:
We are aware that Lancashire University Students’ Union are in breach of their own governing document and Commission guidance, as the majority of their trustees are currently paid. The charity have done the right thing by reporting this matter to the Commission. We are currently assessing information to determine our next steps. We cannot comment further at this time.
The Charity Commission pointed out that Graeme Osborn's public proclamation on the issues was incorrect: they do not impose financial penalties. However, they also elaborated that, 'Payment to trustees needs express authority via the charity’s governing document or express permission from the Commission.'
This follows the news that the appointment of student trustees was on the agenda of an Executive Committee meeting on 11th February, however they could not be approved as the meeting became inquorate after LUSU President George Nuttall and Grizedale JCR President Atree Ghosh left the meeting early.
An emergency Exec meeting was held on 20th February, which approved the two student trustee appointments. Spineless welcomes Sam Maesschalck (Exec Committee member, former Postgraduate Board Chair, and Computer Science PhD student) and Eloise Frost (first-year French and Spanish Studies student) to the Trustee Board, and wishes them well in the future.
Spineless hopes that the swift approval of the two appointments puts to bed a matter that has been ongoing since Spineless first reported on it over a month ago. We hope that from now on, LUSU will have the time and resources to focus on the things that actually matter to students, such as carrying out the AGM policies.