Constitution for the Bowie State University Staff Council

PREAMBLE

Basic to the effective operation of any system of higher education is the acceptance of the concept of shared governance.  The staff in an institution provides a wide range of services and expertise that is critical to the fulfillment of the University's mission statement. In recognition of this essential role, staff employees have a voice in basic decisions that affect the welfare of the University and its employees, including an informed advisory role in administrative areas and in the functional support of academic matters.

ARTICLE I

SECTION 1. PURPOSE

The Bowie State University Staff Council (BSUSC) advises the President and provides representation to the Bowie State University Council.  Its responsibility will be to consider and make recommendations on University issues affecting staff; to communicate staff concerns to the President through the Staff Council Liaison Vice President for Administration and Finance; to inform employees of the BSUSC's activities and the USM related actions; and to provide liaison with Council of University System Staff (CUSS) and Bowie State University staff employees who are excluded from Collective Bargaining.

ARTICLE II

SECTION 1. CONSTITUENCIES

The BSUSC shall represent all staff employees excluding Administrative Cabinet level positions such as Vice Presidents, Associate/Assistant Vice Presidents, Special Assistants, Deans, all staff represented by an exclusive bargaining agent, and students.

SECTION 2. MEMBERSHIP

The BSUSC shall consist of non-exempt, exempt, and long-term contingent employees who are not represented by exclusive bargaining agents.

SECTION 3. APPOINTMENT OF VOTING MEMBERS

The appointment of voting members shall be based on five percent (5%) of total staff from each division who are not represented by an exclusive bargaining agent.

ARTICLE III

SECTION 1. OFFICERS

All officers of Staff Council, Chair, and Vice Chair, CUSS Representatives, voting representatives and alternates will be elected biennially from and by the body of staff. The Secretary, Treasurer and Parliamentarian shall be elected from among the Council's voting representatives at the May meeting. The Past Chair, serving as Representative-at-Large and CUSS representatives will also serve as members of the Council's Executive Committee.

SECTION 2. MEETINGS

The BSUSC shall meet as specified in its by-laws, but no less than twice each traditional semester. Additional meetings may be convened according to procedures specified in the by-laws.

ARTICLE IV

SECTION 1. AMENDMENT

Amendments to this constitution may be proposed by any member of the BSUSC. The constitution can be amended at any regular meeting of the Council at which quorum is established. The procedures for adoption of an amendment are:

(1) initial agreement by a simple majority vote of the BSUSC to refer the proposed amendment, for some specified time, to the staff for consideration and comments;
 
(2) final approval by a simple majority vote of the Council.

ARTICLE V

SECTION 1. ADOPTION

This constitution will be published and, for a specified period of time determined by the Council, referred to staff for consideration and comment. After that period, adoption will be by two-thirds vote of approval by the Council, and approval by the President.

BOWIE STATE UNIVERSITY BY-LAWS FOR THE BOWIE STATE UNIVERSITY STAFF COUNCIL

ARTICLE I NAME

SECTION 1. NAME

The name of this council shall be the Bowie State University Staff Council (BSUSC), hereafter referred to as the Council.

ARTICLE II PURPOSE

SECTION 1. PURPOSE

The purpose of the Council shall be:

A. To represent the interests and concerns of the staff who are not represented by an exclusive bargaining agent at Bowie State University (BSU);

B. To review University policy as it affects the staff;

C. To provide a forum for discussion and recommendations on matters involving staff and the welfare of BSU; and

D. To certify composition of standing committees.

ARTICLE III MEMBERSHIP

SECTION 1. VOTING MEMBERS

The number of voting members of the Council will be equal to five percent (5%) of total staff who are not represented by an exclusive bargaining agent. The number of voting members will be further defined by proportion of staff employees within each Presidential or Vice Presidential area. The number of staff employees and the proportion of the Presidential or Vice Presidential area will be reviewed biennially and revised, if needed.

Staff shall elect an alternate per division who shall substitute for a voting representative of the Council. Alternates should be elected at the same time and in the same manner as regular voting representatives. The representative needs to contact the alternate when he or she cannot attend a meeting. An alternate may vote for an absent voting representative provided the representative has given prior notification to the Chair.

If any elected representative is absent from three consecutive Council meetings or a total of three Council meetings, without prior notification to the Chair, and without sending an alternate, the Executive Committee will notify the staff of the Presidential or Vice Presidential area with recommendation for replacement.

The BSUSC Nominating Committee shall develop a voting ballot for each Presidential or Vice Presidential area. The ballot shall be distributed to all staff in the corresponding area.

New representatives of the Council shall begin their term at the September Staff Council meeting and serve a two-year term.

SECTION 2. NON-VOTING MEMBERS

Divisional Representatives are the only voting members of the council. Non-voting members are all other staff employees who are not represented by an exclusive bargaining agent and who may also participate in deliberations of the council without a vote.

SECTION 3. EX-OFFICIO MEMBERS

The non-voting ex-officio members will include the following: President, Provost, and area Vice Presidents.

ARTICLE IV ORGANIZATION

SECTION 1. OFFICERS

There shall be eight officers of the Council. The Chair, Vice Chair, and two CUSS representatives will be elected biennially from and by the body of staff. The Past Chair will serve as an officer immediately following their term of office. The other three officers, Secretary, Treasurer, and Parliamentarian, will be selected from the voting representatives.

SECTION 2. PAST CHAIR

The Past Chair shall serve on the Executive Committee of the Council as a Representative-at-large immediately following their term as Chair. The Past Chair shall have voting privileges.

SECTION 3. CUSS REPRESENTATIVES

There shall be two members elected from the Council to serve as CUSS representatives for Bowie State University. These two members shall also serve on the Executive Committee of the Council and have voting privileges.  One representative will be exempt and the other non-exempt. In the event that no person is nominated or elected from either one of these groups, an institution may elect all members from the same group (all exempt or all nonexempt). There should be two alternates (one non-exempt and one exempt, if possible) who may attend the meetings and who can only vote if the representative is not able to attend and prior notification has been given to the Chair of CUSS.

SECTION 4. VOTING MEMBERS

There shall be five percent (5%) staff representation, based on total number of staff, divided proportionately by the number of staff in each of the following areas: President's Office, Academic Affairs, Administration and Finance, Institutional Advancement, Information Technology, and Student Affairs. Each area shall have at a minimum one representative.

SECTION 5. STANDING COMMITTEES

Each Standing Committee is charged with electing a chair who is responsible for reporting committee activities to the Council. Standing Committees may add to their membership as needed to accomplish goals of the committee.  Each Standing Committee shall be required to submit a written report at the end of the academic year. Standing Committees of the Council shall include the following.

A. Constitution and By-laws Committee

1. The Constitution and By-laws Committee shall be composed of one Voting and two Non-voting Members. The committee shall elect one chairperson and one secretary.

2. The Constitution and By-laws Committee shall review and make recommendations, revisions, and clarifications to the Constitution and By-laws as necessary.

3. The Constitution and By-laws Committee shall monitor the By-laws and ensure that the Council is adhering to this document.

B. Staff Review Committee

1. The Staff Review Committee shall be composed of one Voting and two Non-voting Members. The Committee shall elect one chairperson and one secretary.

2. The Staff Review Committee shall review; make recommendations, revisions, and clarifications of University policies concerning conditions of employment of the staff.

C. Staff Development, Recognition and Morale

1. The Staff Development, Recognition and Morale Committee shall be composed of one Voting and two Non-voting Members. The Committee shall elect one chairperson and one secretary.

2. The Staff Development, Recognition and Morale Committee shall be charged with providing staff development, recognition and morale activities for the staff.

D. Nominating Committee

1. The Nominating Committee shall be chaired by the immediate past Staff Council Chair and will be composed of one Voting and two Non-voting Members.

2. The Nominating Committee shall develop the ballot and conduct elections for Voting Representatives of the Council.

SECTION 6. AD-HOC COMMITTEES

Ad-hoc Committees may be selected by the Council to consider particular concerns. Ad-hoc committees shall exist for the term of the appointing Council. The Chairperson of each ad-hoc committee shall be appointed by the Chair of the Council.

SECTION 7. UNIVERSITY COMMITTEES

The Council shall have representation on all University committees as provided in the University Council By-Laws.

ARTICLE V ELECTIONS

SECTION 1. VOTING

All members of the BSUSC are eligible to vote in Staff Council elections. Each staff person may vote for the number of eligible candidates from their division. For example, if the division is allowed two representatives, they may elect to vote for two different people on the one ballot.

SECTION 2. ELECTION OF VOTING REPRESENTATIVES

The Nominating Committee shall coordinate with Human Resources to determine the 
number of staff positions by the six units (President, Academic Affairs, Administration  
and Finance, Information Technology, Institutional Advancement, and Student Affairs).

1) The total number of staff will be multiplied by five percent (5%) to determine how many voting representatives there will be on the Council. 
 
2) If this result is less than one, it will be rounded up to one.

A. Nominees for voting representatives shall be solicited at least one month prior to the election (immediately following the March meeting).

B. The voting and alternate representatives shall be chosen by written ballot immediately following the April meeting of each year and shall be selected from the membership within each unit as specified in Section 1.

C. The term of office for officers, voting representatives and alternates shall be two years.

SECTION 3. OFFICERS

A. Chair, Vice Chair, and CUSS Representatives must be elected by the body for each term. The Chair and Vice Chair shall not serve more than two consecutive terms in each respective office. The Secretary, Treasurer, and Parliamentarian shall be elected from among the Council's voting representatives at the May meeting. Term of office starts at the end of the May meeting.
 
B. An officer may request to be relieved of office due to job change, extended illness, or other extenuating circumstances. If an officer is not fulfilling the obligations of the office, BSUSC may require an officer to step down by a simple majority vote at any meeting where a quorum is established.
 
C. In the event that an office is vacated, voluntarily or involuntarily, the Executive Committee shall convene at a special call meeting to select the appropriate officer to fill the vacancy for the remainder of the term. If the Past Chair position is vacated for whatever reason, the position shall not be filled that term.

ARTICLE VI DUTIES

SECTION 1. CHAIRPERSON

The duties of the Chairperson shall include presiding over general meetings, serving on the University Council, preparing agendas for the Council meetings, chairing the Nominating Committee, serving as spokesperson for the Council, and performing other duties as necessary. The Chairperson shall call the monthly Staff Council meetings. In the case of a tie vote, the Chairperson will vote.

SECTION 2. VICE CHAIRPERSON

The duties of the Vice Chairperson shall include substituting for the Chairperson when that officer is absent, serving on the University Council, serving as a member of the Nominating Committee, and other duties as necessary.

SECTION 3. SECRETARY

The duties of the Secretary shall include taking minutes, sending them to the BSUSC membership at least three working days prior to the next scheduled meeting, archiving them in the University Library, and serving as a member of the University Council.

SECTION 4. TREASURER DUTIES

The duties of the Treasurer shall be defined as the official custodian of the budget and trustee of BSUSC fiscal accounts and must be able to explain the budget to members if needed. The specific duties of the treasurer will include but are not limited to the following:

1. Properly manage, receive and disburse funds in accordance with BSU policy and guidelines.

2. Keep an accurate record of all funds received and disbursed.

3. Deposit all funds collected and or received in the proper budget account in an approved bank (where applicable) as soon as possible.

4. Ensure the bank signature card includes at least one other officer's name.

5. Never deposit funds received by the organization into a personal account.

6. Issue a receipt for all funds donated or received.

7. Provide updates for the regular monthly meetings (or as needed).

8. Prepare an annual report which is audited before it is presented.

9. Keep all receipts, bank statements, cancelled checks, etc. for auditing purposes.

10. Complete required PeopleSoft paperwork for the role of Requestor and attend the mandatory training within 30 days of being sworn into office.

SECTION 5. PAST CHAIR

Serving as a Representative-at-large, the duties of the Past Chair shall include advising the Council, providing historical rationale for decisions, attending University Council meetings, and serving on any other committee deemed necessary by the Chair.

SECTION 6. CUSS REPRESENTATIVES

The duties of the CUSS representatives shall include representing Bowie State University at monthly meetings of CUSS, presenting CUSS reports at the Staff Council meetings, and serving on the Executive Committee of the Council. CUSS members represent the views of the body regarding a staff sanctioned position. If the CUSS member cannot carry out the view of the body then the alternate must vote the wishes of the body in place of the voting representative.

SECTION 7. PARLIAMENTARIAN

The duties of the Parliamentarian shall include making sure that "Robert's Rules of Order" are followed during all Staff Council meetings, ensuring that a quorum is present for all official meetings and making certain that time is used efficiently during meetings.

SECTION 8. VOTING REPRESENTATIVES

The duties of the voting representatives shall include presenting matters concerning their constituents to the attention of the appropriate unit and in general, representing the staff members in the Council.

SECTION 9. ALTERNATE REPRESENTATIVES

The duties of the alternate representatives shall include presenting matters concerning their constituents to the attention of the appropriate unit and in general, representing the staff members in the Council when called upon.

SECTION 10. NON-VOTING MEMBERS

The duties of the non-voting members shall include voicing concerns to their voting representatives for presentation to the Council and serving on committees as assigned.

SECTION 11. BSUSC STANDING COMMITTEE CHAIRPERSONS

The duties of Council Committee Chairpersons shall include submitting a report at the end of the academic year to the Council and performing the duties designated by their respective committee charters.

SECTION 12. BSUSC UNIVERSITY COMMITTEE REPRESENTATIVES

The duties of the BSUSC representatives on University Committees shall include attending monthly meetings, submitting reports to the Council as requested by the Chair or designee and representing Council concerns to those committees.

SECTION 13. EX-OFFICIO MEMBERS

The duty of ex-officio members shall be informing the Council of relevant issues, which concern the Council.

ARTICLE VII MEETINGS

SECTION 1. GENERAL MEETINGS

General meetings shall be held at least once a month throughout the academic year and as needed during the summer. Attendance at Council and committee meetings is highly desirable to represent units effectively. The notice of the meeting shall be sent to the membership no later than three working days prior to each regular meeting unless otherwise approved by the Executive Committee. Bargaining unit employees shall be allowed to attend open meetings and receive general university information.

SECTION 2. EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEETINGS

Executive Committee meetings shall be held at least once a month throughout the academic year and as needed during the summer. These meetings should occur at least one week prior to the General Meeting and be convened to formulate the agenda for that meeting. The Executive Committee meeting shall be called by the Chair of Staff Council or designee. Attendance at Executive Committee meetings by voting representatives is expected in order to represent their units effectively.

SECTION 3. CALL OR EMERGENCY MEETINGS

Call meetings or emergency meetings may only be convened by the Chair or other Executive Committee members in the absence of the Chair.

SECTION 4. ALL BSUSC STAFF MEETINGS

Meetings or assemblies of all staff who are not represented by an exclusive bargaining unit on campus may only be convened by the Staff Council Chair and designated liaison of the President to the Staff Council. No one person shall convene this body without the other's knowledge. However, the President of the University has the authority to convene this body at any time.

SECTION 5. QUORUM

A quorum shall consist of a simple majority of Voting Representatives. Voting by proxy or assignment shall not be permitted.

SECTION 6. MEETING WITH UNIVERSITY PRESIDENT

The Staff Council Executive Committee shall meet with the President of the University on an as needed basis to discuss shared governance issues as they relate to staff.

Section 7. Absences

Three unexcused absences of voting representatives will be cause for removal from the Council. A petition for reinstatement may be made to the Executive Committee of the Council within one week of notification of removal.

SECTION 8. TRAVEL

Overnight travel may only be approved in advance, budget permitting, if the destination is in excess of 50 miles from the employee's home. Please refer to the most current BSU Travel Policy for procedures and forms for making travel requests and specific details on reimbursement rates. All budget, finance and travel related documents will require two (2) signatures for approval and/or authority that shall be comprised of Chair, Vice Chair or Treasurer.

ARTICLE VIII INFORMATION

SECTION 1. MEETING MINUTES

A set of minutes shall be distributed at least three working days prior to each general meeting and archived in the University Library.

ARTICLE IX PARLIAMENTARY AUTHORITY

SECTION 1. PARLIAMENTARY AUTHORITY

The rules contained in the current edition of "Robert's Rules of Order" shall govern the organization in all cases in which they are applicable.

ARTICLE X BSUSC CONSTITUTION AND BY-LAWS AMENDMENT

SECTION 1. AMENDMENTS

These By-laws can be amended at any regular meeting of the Council at which quorum is established. The procedures for adoption of an amendment are:

(1) initial agreement by a simple majority vote of the BSUSC Voting Representatives to refer the proposed amendment, for some specified time, to the staff for consideration and comments; 
 
(2) final approval by a simple majority vote of the BSU Staff Council;  
 
(3) approval by the President.

ARTICLE XI SUPERSESSION

This Constitution shall supersede all previous Plans of Organization of the Bowie State University Staff Council.

 

Date of Ratification by Referendum:   March 29, 2011

Current BSUSC Officers

Trenita Johnson, Chair
Jerry Isaac, Vice Chair
Barbara Mansfield, Secretary
Jabari Walker, Parliamentarian
Cynthia Coleman, Immediate Past Chair

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Trenita Johnson, Chair of BSU Staff Council

Dr. Mickey L. Burnim, President, Bowie State University

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