Tribune of the Synod
The Civil Service appoint one or more of their number to serve as Tribune to the Imperial Synod. This position is designed to ensure the smooth operation of the Synod and has powers of judgement to support that. Although the office of Tribune is referred to in the singular, it is common for more than one civil servant to share the position, so that they may share the responsibilities and work between them.
The Tribune of the Synod is an NPC only position. Its role is to be the umpire for the Synod - not to play the game.
The Tribune of the Synod helps to ensure that Synod judgements take place in a timely and effective fashion. They accept judgements from members of the Synod and are responsible for publishing them and for collecting and tallying the votes. They also help priests to understand the different assemblies and powers of the Synod as well as ensuring that the text of any judgement meets the legal requirements.
The Tribune is responsible for communicating the decisions of the Synod to the Empire. In most cases they discharge this responsibility by ensuring the judgements are publicly available at the Hub, announcing the count of votes, and keeping accurate records which can be published by the civil service later. If a judgement targets an individual citizens - such as revocation or Writ of Excommunication then the Tribune will take additional steps to ensure that the citizen is aware of the judgement and the outcome.
The Tribune may submit any number of judgements for consideration by any assembly of the Synod each summit. In practice this ability is usually used to submit judgements of appointment for elections or to resubmit a judgement of recognition to the General Assembly after it has passed a virtue assembly.
They do not accept "suggestions" for judgements from citizens.
It is part of the Tribune's responsibilities to ensure that the Synod runs smoothly and that members are aware of pending judgements and can vote on them. As part of their responsibilities, the Tribune has the power to reject a judgement if they consider it too be invalid, too similar to an existing judgement, or that its consideration would damage the good standing of the Synod.
To be valid, a judgement must be submitted to the correct assembly and contain the necessary details for consideration by the Synod. For example, the Tribune will reject a judgement calling for a change of doctrine that is submitted to the Assembly of Courage. Likewise they will reject a judgement to issue a writ of excommunication if it does not clearly state who will be excommunicated. In extremely rare cases, the Tribune may reject a judgement if the wording is so deliberately convoluted that they make the legal implications of passing the judgement unclear.
The Tribune will also reject a judgement if it is practically identical to a pending judgement. This is to prevent confusion over multiple judgements that have the same outcome.
Finally the Tribune may reject a judgement if its acceptance would damage the good standing of the Synod. In practice, this power exists so that the Tribune can reject judgements that contravene our rules for conduct at events.
The Tribune has the power to remove a judgement before voting is completed, if they believe it is in the interests of the Synod to do so. If this happens, then the withdrawal is noted in the Synod records. For legal purposes the judgement is treated as if it had failed.
The Tribune will usually only initiate this where they discover a duplicate judgement has been submitted, however members of the Synod may request the Tribune use this power on their behalf to withdraw a judgement that they have submitted. The Tribune will usually facilitate this request provided that they are satisfied that the withdrawal is not being request to thwart the will of the Synod. For example, if a judgement of veto were withdrawn at the last minute, when it was becoming clear that it would pass - then the Tribune will not allow that judgement to be withdrawn.
As an NPC the Tribune may use this power to withdraw a judgement where there are convincing personal OOC reasons to do so.
The Civil Service selects the Tribune of the Synod. Although the title is usually referred to in the singular, the civil service may grant the title to more than one citizen. It is common practice to have two or more civil servants serving as Tribune at any one time.
The Tribune in Play
The Tribune is an NPC whose role it is to keep the Synod fun and engaging for the participants.
- The Judgements of the Synod
- Synod Positions
- Religious Crime
- Imperial Theology