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SA By-Laws

South Dakota State University Students’ Association By-Laws

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SA By-Laws (Updated April 2018)

Updated April 10, 2018

Preamble

 We the students of South Dakota State University, in order to establish a self-governing student body, and to promote the best interests of the students and the entire University, do set forth these bylaws.

Article I. Name

 The name of this organization shall be the South Dakota State University Students’ Association, hereafter referred to as the Corporation.

Article II. Purpose

Section 1. To govern in the best interests of the students, direct student organizations within the University’s purpose and structure, and represent the students before the University community and the citizens of the State of South Dakota, subject to the rules established by the Board of Regents of the State of South Dakota.

Section 2. To review bylaws and constitutions for all student organizations and to review proposed new bylaws and constitutions. These groups shall include but not be limited to student organizations and all branches of the Students’ Association.

Section 3. To manage, direct, and oversee the operations of student owned and/or funded facilities and programs.

 

Article III. Membership

Section 1. All general activity fee-paying students of South Dakota State University shall be members of the Corporation.

Section 2. The Corporation shall not discriminate in any manner against any individual because of age, race, color, creed, religion, gender, ancestry, disability, national origin, or sexual orientation.

 

Article IV. Executive Branch

 Section 1. Officers

  1. Elected Officers: The elected officers of the Corporation shall be the Corporation President and Vice President.
  2. Appointed Officers: The appointed, non-elected officers shall be:
    1. Chief of Staff
    2. Finance Chairperson
    3. Government Affairs Chairperson
    4. Communications Chairperson
    5. Other positions may be created by the elected officers with Senate consent.
  3. Eligibility
    1. At the time of the election, the Corporation President, Vice President, and appointed officers of the Corporation must fulfill and maintain the following requirements and maintain them throughout the term.
      1. Must be registered in at least six (6) credits at SDSU per semester.
      2. Must hold a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.5 on a four (4) point scale.
      3. Officers must be in good conduct standing with the University.
    2. Candidates for the offices of President and Vice President may not be classified as freshman at the time of their nomination, unless one semester of Senate has been completed.
  4. Multiple Offices: No officer shall hold more than one office concurrently.
  5. Multiple Terms: Any officers may serve more than one term if re-elected or re-appointed.
  6. Training of Successors: All officers shall be responsible for training their successors at no extra cost to the Corporation.
  7. Simultaneous Office: Candidates for Corporation President and Vice President may not be candidates for the Senate at the same time and cannot hold both offices simultaneously.
  8. Attendance: All elected and appointed officers are required to attend all regular Senate and Board of Directors meetings. More than three (3) unexcused absences shall be grounds for removal. All excused absences must be approved by the President or in the case of a Presidential absence, by the Board of Directors. Removal shall follow procedures outline in Article V, Section 3, subsection H.
  9. Office Hours: In order to receive compensation, all elected and appointed officers shall be required a minimum of 15 hours per week in the Senate office,   Officers shall serve their hours in the office or at meetings were Senate related business is being conducted.

Section 2. Elections

A.   Term of Office: Both elected officials shall hold office for the term of one year beginning on the second (2nd) Monday in April in the year they were elected and lasting until the second (2nd) Monday in April of the following year.

B.   Nominations

  1. The Senate shall open nominations for slates for the offices of President and Vice President in a meeting not later than the fifth (5th) week preceding the Corporation election.
  2. Nominations for a slate consisting of the presidential candidate and the vice presidential candidate shall remain open for a period of three (3) meetings.
  3. Nominations shall close at a Senate meeting no later than two (2) weeks preceding the week of the election.
  4. During the nomination period, nominations can be made at a Senate meeting by a Senator making a motion and receiving a second.
  5. A slate may also enter the race by filing a petition signed by 5% of the members of the Corporation.
  6. A petition is due at the same time as petitions for the Student Senate.

C.   Election Scheduling and Administration

  1. The Senate Board of Directors shall set the election by January 1st of each year.
  2. The election date(s) shall not be earlier than the second (2nd) Friday in March nor later than the first (1st) Friday in April.
  3. The election shall be administered by the Board of Directors acting as the election steering committee.
  4. All candidates shall abide by the election procedure and guidelines as laid out in Article IV, Section 2, subsection J.

D.   Election Results

  1. The slate receiving a plurality of votes cast shall be elected.
  2. If no slate receives 30% or more of the votes cast, or ends in a tie, within an academic week a run off election shall be held between the two slates with the most votes.

E.   Write in Votes: Write in votes shall be considered void.

F.   Withdrawal

  1. To withdraw, a slate must submit written notice to the Corporation Vice President.
  2. Withdrawal of a slate shall be published in the Corporation newspaper by the Board of Directors.

G.   Vacancies

  1. In the event of a vacancy in the office of President, the Vice President shall assume the duties of President.
  2. In the event of a vacancy in the office of Vice President, the President shall appoint a Vice President with approval by two-thirds majority vote of the total Senate membership.
  3. Upon simultaneous vacancy, the Senate shall elect a person to fill the office of President for the remainder of the term by a two-thirds majority vote of total membership. The election will take place within two weeks of the vacancy. The Administrative Assistant shall chair the Senate meeting until such an election is conducted.

H.   Removal by Senate

  1. In the event that an officer no longer meets eligibility requirements or duties outlined in the bylaws, they can be removed by the Senate.
    1. The Board of Directors shall investigate the allegations and shall recommend action to the Senate.
    2. If the Board of Directors recommends removal, a vote of three-fourths of the total membership of the Senate shall be required for removal.
    3. Advisors will be responsible for monitoring eligibility requirements.

H.   Removal by Election

  1. Petition

a.   Upon submission of petitions to the Senate calling for the removal of either elected officer and bearing the signatures of not less than ten (10) percent of the members of the Corporation, the Senate shall set a date for a special recall election to be held not less than two (2) weeks and not more than four (4) weeks after the receipt of the petitions.

b.   A two-thirds vote of the Corporation members voting shall be necessary to remove either elected officer.

2.   Senate Vote

a.   Upon three-fourths vote of the total Senate membership, the Board of Directors shall set up a special election as outlined in Article IV, Section 2, subsection J, sub-subsection 1a, for the removal of either elected officer.

b.   Such a measure may not be vetoed by the Corporation President.

3.   Scheduling of Removal Elections

a.   The special election may not be held during the summer session nor during periods when classes are not in session.

b.   Notice of the elections must be published in the Corporation newspaper at least one (1) week prior to the election.

J.   Election Grievance Procedures

  1. The Corporation Senate shall maintain the following document in all Corporation Election Applications:

 

Campaign Guidelines and Grievance Procedures

**Campaign materials cannot be visible from the polling stations on Election Days and cannot be within 50 feet of polling stations.

CAMPAIGN MATERIALS

Campaign posters may be printed at your own expense.

Any materials purchased by Student Fee Dollars may not be utilized for campaign purposes, other than the blue painter’s tape available to all students.

Posters must be hung using blue painter’s tape. The Students’ Association will have painters tape available for all students in the Students’ Association Office.

Other campaign materials may be utilized, unless they have an adhesive backing

DISPLAYING CAMPAIGN MATERIALS

All campaign materials must be displayed in accordance with campus policy. Posters and signs may be hung in approved areas and bulletin boards. Please speak with Residence Hall Directors at each hall before displaying any posters or signs in the hall. Each residence hall may have a different policy. Physical Plant can answer questions about where to display posters and signs in other campus buildings. Physical Plant does not require that campaign materials be approved before posting. However, please remember that should your posters or signs not be in compliance with University Policy, they may be removed.   University Policy may be found in the SDSU Facilities and Services Service Guide under Section I: SDSU Publicity/Posting Policy.

A special bulletin board will be set up in the Main Street of the University Student Union for campaign posters. This board will be provided by the Corporation. Campaign materials are allowed on any University Student Union approved advertising space, excluding University Student Union bulletin boards that are different than the bulletin board previously mentioned. All Campaign materials inside the University Student Union must be taken down prior to start of election.

Chalking is allowed on sidewalks, but not under awnings or any surfaces that would not be touched by rain water.

CANDIDATES AND CAMPAIGN VOLUNTEERS

Presidential and Vice presidential candidates are allowed inside of the polling stations; they may be wearing a campaign t-shirt. Candidates may not be soliciting at all inside the buildings that contain the polling stations. Candidates are not allowed to loiter around the polling station.

Neither candidates nor their campaign volunteers may set up their own polling locations, or use computers while in the presence of voters to gain an unfair advantage.

Candidates are responsible for all campaign volunteers and their actions.

Campaign volunteers participating in Get-Out-The-Vote efforts must be outside of all polling station buildings and not within 50 feet of the polling station entrance, which will be marked on election days.

DEBATE

A formal debate may be organized for Presidential slates after nominations and petitions have been closed. Details will be provided to all candidates at least one week prior to the debate.

Formal debates may be organized for senatorial races.

GRIEVANCES

The Students’ Association maintains a formal grievance procedure for settling election discrepancies and violations. An acceptable grievance must prove to have an effect on the outcome of the election and/or have malicious intent. Any candidate who wishes to file a grievance must do so either five (5) working days after the election or five (5) working days prior to the beginning of the new term, whichever is sooner. This grievance must be filed with the Vice President of Student Affairs. A grievance committee comprised of the corporation advisors will be created. The grievance committee with decide to take one or more of the following actions; no action, request formal apology from offender/s to victim/s, inclusion of victim/s’ ticket into possible run off, redo election, elimination of offender/s’ ticket, or other actions deemed suitable by the grievance committee.

 

Section 3. Powers

A.   President

  1. Shall act as chief executive and shall execute the provisions of the bylaws and all regulations as adopted by the Senate. He/She shall hold the corporate seal and be responsible for carrying out all Corporation duties as specified by the State of South Dakota.
  2. The President (or his/her appointee) shall serve as chairperson of the Senate, the Board of Directors, and the University Activity Fee Budgeting Committee. He/She shall be responsible for calling meetings.
  3. Shall appoint non-elected officers and other salaried positions of the Corporation in collaboration with the Vice President, with approval of the Senate no later than two weeks after the election.
  4. Shall prepare and submit the annual Corporation operating budget, in cooperation with the Finance Chair, to the Senate. The budget shall be forwarded to the Senate and University Activity Fee Budgeting Committee.
  5. Shall oversee all Corporation expenditures.
  6. Shall have the power to call the Senate into special session upon 24 hours notice.
  7. Veto

a.The President shall have veto power over all legislation.

b. The President must notify the Senate of the veto within seven days or the bill will be considered passed.

c. The Senate can override a veto by a two-thirds vote of those members present and voting.

8.   Shall name a replacement to the Vice-President if he/she is unable to perform his/her duties and to hire and name a replacement for appointed officers, with two-thirds Senate approval.

9.   Shall have the power to recommend removal of the Corporation Lawyer with two-thirds Senate approval.

10.   Shall have the power to form committees.

B.   Vice President

  1. Shall fill the office of President in the event the office becomes vacant.
  2. Shall carry out any duties as deemed necessary by the President.
  3. Shall have full voting privileges at Senate meetings.
  4. Shall supervise the activities and actions of all committees with Corporation membership.
  5. Shall assume chair responsibilities during removal actions against the President.
  6. Shall recommend for Senate appointment the student members on all committees with Corporation representatives.
  7. Shall coordinate all Senate elections in collaboration with the Communications Chairperson and the rest of the Board of Directors.

C.   Chief of Staff 

  1. Shall serve as an assistant to the Corporation President and Senate.
  2. Shall attend Senate meetings and is subject to Senator attendance policy.
  3. Shall not make motions or vote unless he/she is a Senator.
  4. Shall act on all directives given by the President and Senate.
  5. Shall serve as a non-voting member of the Board of Directors.
  6. Shall monitor and manage all general procedures and daily functions of the Corporation main office.
  7. Shall supervise all Office Assistants and other salaried personnel who have not been elected or appointed.
  8. Shall act as official recorder of minutes for all regular meetings, or shall supervise personnel salaried to transcribe such minutes, and shall distribute agendas and minutes in a timely manner.
  9. Shall update the Students’ Association Code and the Corporation Bylaws.
  10. Shall meet with Ex-Officios at the beginning of each semester.
  11. Shall, in collaboration with the Communications Chairperson, manage the Corporation website.
  12. Upon approval by the Senate, he/she shall send all legislation to the corporation newspaper and/or other appropriate offices deemed necessary by the Corporation President and/or Senate.

D.   Finance Chairperson

  1. Shall act as a liaison between the Corporation and groups funded by the Corporation.
  2. Shall serve as chairperson of the Corporation Finance Committee.
  3. Shall attend Senate meetings and is subject to Senator attendance policy.
  4. Shall not have a vote unless he/she is a Senator. The Finance Chair may debate.
  5. Shall act on all directives given by the President or the Senate.
  6. Shall sign all orders for the disbursement of Senate funds.
  7. Shall be responsible for maintaining the Corporation’s financial records.
  8. Shall present a monthly summary of the Corporation operating expenditures to the Senate for informational purposes.
  9. Shall monitor, on behalf of the Senate, the expenditures of fees approved and authorized by the University Activity Fee Budgeting Committee.
  10. Shall see that the SDSU Accounting Office receives a copy of all finalized, categorized budgets of organizations that are funded by student fees.
  11. Shall serve as non-voting member of Board of Directors.
  12. Shall submit reports on all budget requests to the senators and appointed/elected officers one week prior to that request’s Corporation hearing.
  13. Shall meet with Senators before the budgeting process begins and explain how it functions.

 

E.   Government Affairs Chairperson

  1. Shall act as the liaison with state, local, and other government agencies.
  2. Shall serve as chairperson of the State and Local Government Affairs Committee.
  3. Shall attend Senate meetings and is subject to the Senator attendance policy.
  4. Shall act on all directives given by the President or the Senate.
  5. Shall represent the Corporation as a member of the Brookings Visitor Promotions committee, an ex-officio at the meetings of Downtown Brookings, Incorporated (DBI), Brookings City Council, Chamber of Commerce, and other legislative meetings during the academic year deemed necessary by the President or Senate.
  6. Shall not make motions or vote unless he/she is a Senator.
  7. Shall serve as a non-voting member of the Board of Directors.

F.   Communications Chairperson

  1. Shall maintain all Corporation Senate programs as well as aid senators in coordinating senate projects.
  2. Shall help market elections in collaboration with the Corporation Vice President and the rest of the Board of Directors.
  3. Shall serve as chairperson of the Communications Committee.
  4. Shall attend Senate meetings and is subject to Senator attendance policy.
  5. Shall not have a vote unless he/she is a Senator.
  6. Shall act on all directives given by the President and Senate.
  7. Shall serve as a non-voting member of the Board of Directors.
  8. Shall, in collaboration with the Administrative Assistant, manage the Corporation website.

Section 4. Employees

A.   Corporation Legal Aid 

  1. Shall act according to the yearly contract signed by the Corporation Lawyer and Corporation President.
  2. Shall report to the Corporation President.
  3. Shall provide appropriate legal services for Corporation members as determined by the Senate.
  4. Shall work with the Brookings City Community Development Department in resolving landlord-tenant conflicts.
  5. When a vacancy in the position of Corporation Lawyer occurs, the following procedures must be employed in the search and screening:

a.The Corporation President shall appoint a committee consisting of the Vice President of Student Affairs, and others at his/her discretion.

b. Upon conclusion of the selection process by committee, they shall recommend at least one candidate for employment to the Corporation President.

c. The candidate will then be forwarded to the Senate for two-thirds approval.

B.   Office Assistants

  1. Shall report to the Corporation Chief of Staff .
  2. Duties: Shall perform day-to-day operational tasks in the Corporation office.
  3. Vacancy: When a vacancy occurs, the Administrative Assistant, with the assistance of the Corporation President and Vice President, shall open an appointment process to corporation members, with an application and interview.

 

Section 5. Duality of Office

A.   Any member of a student organization who receives scholarship and/or salary from an organization, aside from Students’ Association, from an annual Students’ Association budget, may not hold a Corporation Executive Board Position. A salary is defined as expenses associated with non-student FTE-bearing staff positions.

B.   No person serving as the Corporation Newspaper Editor may hold or run for a Corporation Executive Board position.

C.   No person shall hold more than one of the following positions concurrently: Corporation President, Corporation Vice President, Chief of Staff, Finance Chairperson, Government Affairs Chairperson, or Communications Chairperson.

 

Article V. Legislative Branch

Section 1. Student Senate

A.   Governing Body: The governing body of the Corporation shall be the Student Senate.

B.   Definition: The Senate shall be a single body consisting of the representatives elected or appointed from each of the seven colleges and the Graduate School within the University.

C.   College Composition: The colleges shall be recognized as follows:

  1. College of Agriculture, Food, and Environmental Sciences 
  2. College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences 
  3. College of Education and Human Sciences 
  4. College of Engineering 
  5. College of Natural Sciences 
  6. College of Nursing 
  7. College of Pharmacy and Allied Health Professions 
  8. Graduate School 

D.   Eligibility

  1. All Corporation Senators must fulfill at the time of the election and maintain the following requirements:

a. Must be enrolled in the college or division he/she represents at the time of the election.

b. Must remain in the college in which he/she was elected for the remainder of the spring and following fall semester after the election with the exception of the University College who may declare a major at any time.

c. Must be registered as a full-time student, except students in the final semester of their degree, who must maintain at minimum part-time student status.

d. Must hold a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.0 on a four point scale.

e. Must be in good conduct standing with the University.

f. No senator can concurrently be a Corporation Newspaper Editor, Corporation Newspaper Managing Editor, and/or Corporation Radio Station Manager.

2.   Senatorial candidates who are enrolled in the Graduate School or are graduating seniors who prove that they have applied or will be attending the Graduate School at the University in the fall semester must campaign under the Graduate School.

E.   College Apportionment

  1. The number of Senators from each college shall be determined once each year according to the Corporation membership at the end of the fall semester and in the following manner.
  2. Each college will be allocated one Senatorial seat for each four percent (4%) of the Corporation membership enrolled in the college. Any resulting fraction of a seat greater than one-half (0.5) shall grant that college an additional senatorial seat. No college shall be apportioned less than three Senators.

F.   Senator Duties

  1. Shall act as a representative of the college by which he/she was elected. 

  2.  Shall sit on a minimum of three (3) University committees, Senate Standing Committees or a combination of University committees and Senate Standing Committees.  
  3. Shall maintain a minimum of two (2) office hours per week. 
  4. Shall attend all Senate meetings, special functions including but not limited to retreat or supplemental training, and assigned committee meetings in accordance with Article V, Section 3, subsection I. 
  5.  Shall assist in the administration of Corporation elections as long as the Senator’s involvement does not cause a conflict of interest. 
  6. Shall fulfill duties designated by the Senate. 
  7. Shall attend a minimum of one (1) Board of Regents meeting, or Students for Higher Education Days (SHED). Failure to attend a Board of Regents meeting or Students for Higher Education Days shall at minimum be considered an unexcused absence and may be grounds for removal according to Article V, Section 3, subsection H. 
  8.  Special allowances to these duties may be granted by the Board of Directors. 

 

G. Code of Ethics

1. All members of the Senate will abide by the South Dakota State University Students’ Association Code of Ethics as written in Appendix 1 of these Bylaws. 

2. Upon taking office, all Senators, ex officio representatives, employees, and other closely associated members will read and sign the Code of Ethics. 

3. The Corporation Chief of Staff will keep these signed Codes of Ethics on file. 

4. Violations of the Code of Ethics shall be grounds for removal from any elected or appointed positions within the Senate as outlined in Article V, Section 3, subsection H. 

 

H. Additional Representatives

  1. Additional representatives shall be identified as ex officio members.
  2. Those seeking ex officio representation shall submit a written request to the Corporation, whereafter the Senate may grant the position by a two-thirds majority vote of approval.
  3. Organizations to be designated as ex-officio organizations shall meet the following criteria:

a. Shall be a recognized and active student organization.

b. In their written registration, should provide adequate evidence that they would otherwise remain underrepresented if not given an ex-officio position.

c. Should represent an entire population and not a specific faction of that population.

d. Once granted a position the organization must provide in their organizational bylaws and/or constitution an officer or appointee that shall serve as an ex-officio. The organization shall be granted a period of one year to enact any changes necessary or the granted position shall be revoked.

4.   Ex officio representatives are required to abide by the attendance policy outlined in Article V, Section 3, subsection I of the Corporation Bylaws.

5.   Duties of ex officio representatives include:

a. Speaking privileges of Senate membership with the exception of voting and making motions.

b. Active participation in discussion consistent with the student demographic that the ex officio representative has been granted a position to represent.

c. Providing at least a monthly report of activities of the the organization.

6.   No individual may concurrently act as a Senator and an ex officio representative, a member of the Corporation executive board and an ex officio representative, or more than one ex officio representative simultaneously.

7.   Ex-Officio members who fail to comply with the attendance policy or any of the above listed duties shall be removed in the following manner:

a. The ex-officio’s organization shall be notified of the member’s delinquency and asked to replace the member.

b. If an organization refuses to send a new representative the seat shall be suspended for the remainder of the current term.

c. Any organization that leaves a seat vacant for a period of three consecutive weeks or more shall have representation suspended for the remainder of the current term.

d. Any organization that leaves a seat vacant for a period of one (1) year shall have representation removed.

Section 2. Elections

A.   Nominating Procedures

  1. Candidates shall be nominated by petition to be available for distribution not later than the fifth (5th) week preceding the Corporation elections.
  2. Petitions shall be signed by fifty (50) Corporation members in the candidate’s college or division, or five percent of the college, whichever is less, with the exception of the Graduate School where candidates need twenty five (25) signatures.
  3. Petitions must be filed in the Corporation office no later than 5:00pm on Monday of the second (2nd) week preceding the Corporation elections.
  4. The Office of Student Affairs will check for the validity of the petitions.
  5. The names of the candidates shall be published in the issue of the Corporation newspaper following the filing deadline.

B.   Election Results

  1. Individuals receiving the largest number of votes shall fill accompanying seats for respective colleges (i.e. the top three vote recipients would be elected if a college holds three seats).

C.   Tie Votes

  1. In the case of a tie vote for the last position in the college to be filled, a run off election shall be held between the tied candidates not later than fourteen (14) days after the first election.

D.   Withdrawal from Election

  1. Written notice must be submitted to the Corporation Vice President.
  2. Withdrawal of a candidate shall be publicized by the Election Steering Committee.

E.   Term of Office

  1. Members of the Senate shall be elected by the Corporation members for a term of one year, coinciding with the terms of the Corporation’s President and Vice President.
  2. Incoming Senators shall assume their duties each year on the Second (2nd) Monday in April.
  3. Any member may be elected for more than one term.

F.   At-Large Elections

  1. Seats not filled by the respective college through the Corporation election process shall be immediately open after the elections as At-Large positions.
  2. In the case of a vacancy in the Senate, the Senate will interview candidates for the open positions. Interviews will be held no later than the third week after the election.
  3. The outgoing Senate will interview candidates for the At-Large positions before the end of the term and will swear in new officers and Senators.
  4. At Large Senators are elected to represent the students of SDSU as a whole and not the college in which they are enrolled.
  5. The Senate shall approve the selections by a two-thirds vote of the members present.
  6. All applicants who wish to be considered a candidate for a vacancy must petition fifty (50) signatures or ten percent (10%), whichever is less, with the exception of the Graduate School which needs twenty five (25) signatures or ten percent (10%), whichever is less, from the Corporation members. Students who submitted a completed petition for their respective corporation election may use that same petition to declare eligibility for the At-Large election. Students wishing to use their same petition must inform the Vice President of that intention within two days of the close of the general election.
  7. Candidates to be considered for an At-Large Senate seat shall be defined by the Board of Directors and then interviewed by the Senate.

 

Section 3. Powers of the Senate

A.   The Senate shall have the responsibility to promote and protect student interests of South Dakota State University.

B.   Shall fill student membership on University committees in accordance with policy as set forth by University President and the Academic Senate.

C.   Shall review all budget requests and cooperate with the University Activity Fee and Budget Committee to recommend expenditures and the student activity fee to the President of the University.

D.   Legislation

  1. No legislative act shall violate the bylaws of the corporation.
  2. All legislation shall be recorded as an ordinance or a resolution.

a. Ordinances

i. Any formal action taken by the Senate that affects the operation of the Senate and/or the Corporation shall be known as an ordinance.

ii. An ordinance, until altered by subsequent acts of the Senate, is a legislative act that binds both current and future legislative action.

b. Resolution: Any act taken by the Senate of a temporary character or for the purpose of requesting or commending action by organizations or persons outside the authority of the Corporation or for the purpose of recommending a funding allocation to the University Activity Fee and Budgeting Committee shall be known as a resolution.

3.   Voting

a.   Ordinances

i. Ordinances shall receive two readings before the Senate no less than seven calendar days apart. Any member of the Senate may request a full reading of any item of legislation. 

ii. Ordinances shall receive no vote upon the first reading.

iii. The second reading shall require a two-thirds vote by roll call.

iv. Ordinances failing passage shall receive no further legislative action for the remaining academic year.

v. The Senate chairperson shall have discretion whether amendments incurred at a second reading significantly affect the intent of a given ordinance as to warrant an additional reading.

vi. Ordinances may be approved following the first hearing, if an emergency is declared and two-thirds of the elected members or Senate approve the ordinance(s).

vii. Upon enactment, ordinances may be amended or repealed by a majority vote following prescribe rules of conduct.

b.   Resolutions

i. Resolutions shall receive two readings before the Senate no less than seven (7) calendar days apart.

ii. Resolutions may be passed by a simple majority vote following the second reading.

iii. Resolutions may be approved following the first hearing if an emergency is declared and two-thirds of the elected members of the Senate approve the resolution(s).

iv. Upon enactment, resolutions may be amended or repealed by majority vote.

v. It shall be the discretion of the Senate chairperson whether resolutions shall be voted by roll call or as a committee of the whole.

  1. Proposal of Legislation

a. Upon enactment, new legislation that conflicts with existing resolutions and ordinances shall have precedence.

b. Legislation shall require the sponsorship of at least two members of the Corporation one of which shall be a voting member of the Senate.

c. “WHEREAS” Clauses in any legislation may not be struck with an amendment motion.

d. Legislation may also be initiated by means of a petition.

i. Petitions shall require the signatures and identification numbers of 100 members of the corporation.

ii. All petitions must be filed with the Corporation President a minimum of three calendar days prior to the next meeting of the Senate.

5.   Documentation

a. Proposed legislation must designate in typewritten form: the date, whether it is a resolution or an ordinance, the name of the sponsors, a title, and a description of the proposed legislation.

b. The Corporation newspaper shall be notified of proposed ordinances both prior and following second reading.

c. The Corporation newspaper shall be notified, when possible, of proposed resolutions and shall be notified following Senate reading.

d. Upon enactment, ordinances and resolutions shall be maintained in a document to be known as the Students’ Association Code.

E.   Meetings

  1. The Senate shall hold weekly meetings while school is in session.
  2. The Senate has the power to call special meeting upon 24 hours notice, by submitting to the President a written request signed by one-fourth of the total Senate membership. A quorum of at least one-half of the total Senate membership shall be needed to conduct business.

F.   Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly Revised, shall be the parliamentary authority.

G.   College Caucuses

  1. Shall be formed by each of the elected colleges or divisions.
  2. Caucuses shall consist of all Senators representing that college or division.
  3. The caucus member chosen as representative to the Board of Directors shall be chairperson of the caucus.
  4. The caucus shall convene at least once a semester. The caucus shall provide an opportunity for collegiate student groups in their college or division to present information as deemed appropriate to further the Senator’s ability to represent every constituent. Caucus meeting time shall be publicized with adequate notice.
  5. At the first and last Senate meeting of the semester, the President shall include a Senate agenda item that provides Board of Director members an opportunity to report on activities in each college caucus.

H.   Removal

  1. The Senate shall have the power to remove the President or Vice President in the manner outlined in Article IV, Section 2, subsection H.
  2. The Senate may remove any officer it appoints or approves, by a three-fourths majority of the total senate membership.
  3. Removal of Senators

a. If a Senator has failed to fulfill his/her duties, the Senate may take action to remove the Senator from office.

b. A motion to initiate removal proceedings may be made by any Senator and must have a second to be entertained by the chair.

c. Following the motion and second, the chair must send out written notification to the Senator that removal proceedings have been initiated against him/her within three (3) days.

d. At the regular Senate meeting following the meeting when removal proceedings were initiated, a hearing will be conducted in front of the entire body, where the Senator will have the opportunity to explain him/herself.

e. In order to remove a Senator from office, three-fourths of the total Senate membership must vote for removal.

f. Removal Announcement: The Board of Directors must announce the possible removal of the Senator at a regular Senate meeting at least one week prior to the removal vote.

4.   Removal by Election

a. A removal election shall be held in an individual college upon the receipt by the Senate of a petition signed by (10%) of the Corporation membership in the Senator’s college, calling for the removal of that Senator.

5.   The proposed election shall be held not less than two (2) or nor more than four (4) weeks after the date of presentation of the petition.

a. These weeks shall exclude summer session.

b. Notice of the removal election shall be published in the Corporation newspaper at least one week prior to the election.

c. It shall require two-thirds of the votes cast to remove the representative from office.

6.   Eligibility: Senators will automatically be removed if previously stated eligibility requirements are not met and maintained. Special allowances may be granted by the Board of Directors.

7.   Filling Vacancies: In the case of a Senator being removed, the vacancies shall be filled according to the Corporation By-Laws.

I.    Attendance

  1. For a Senator to be removed he or she must have more than three (3) unexcused absences or more than six (6) excused absences from Senate or committee meetings. Excused absences must be approved by the Corporation President and/or Vice President.

a. Guidelines for absences from any regular Senate meeting shall be as follows:

i. Acceptable Absences:

a.   Illness

b.   conflict with testing

c.    family emergency

d.   Adverse weather conditions

e.   University excused absence

ii.   Unacceptable Absences:

a.   studying for a class/test

b.   employment obligations

c.   other campus organization meetings

d.   failure to remember scheduled meeting time, place, etc.

e.   a scheduled class, except during the semester in which the senate term began.

b.   Failure to proxy a vote for an excused absence from any meeting shall automatically result in an unexcused absence.

 

i. Proxy forms must be submitted and approved by the President and/or Vice President a minimum of two hours before the scheduled meeting time in order for a vote to not be considered abstained.

ii. Proxy forms submitted before the scheduled meeting time must include the voting decision on all agenda items.

iii. The proxy representative must be aware of the terms in which the absent senator is willing to maintain their vote in case of an amendment to the original bill, amendment, budget request, etc.

iv. Failure to provide the proxy form or written voting decisions within the proper time frame previously stated will result in the abstaining of all voting rights for the missed meeting.

v. No proxy representative may control more than two votes simultaneously.

c.   All of the above guidelines are subject to the discretion of the Corporation President and/ or Vice President.

  1. Removal may also be necessary if Senatorial duties are not fulfilled, as stated in Article V, Section 1, subsection F.

J.   To form committees on a need basis.

K.   To select a representative to sit on the Board of Directors from each college caucus.

L.   To amend By-Laws in a manner consistent to the By-Laws.

M.   To nominate Corporation Presidential and Vice Presidential candidates.

N.   To set election dates within guidelines stated in the Corporation By-Laws.

O.   To approve Corporation office expenditures including office supplies and equipment totaling over $1000.

P.   To serve on standing committees of the Senate created by the President.

Q.   Approve At-Large recommendations with a 2/3 vote.

 

Section 4. Board of Directors

A.   Membership

  1. Shall consist of the Corporation President, who shall serve as chairperson, Vice President and one Senator from each college as voting members.
  2. All appointed officers shall be non-voting members.
  3. College Representative: After the first meeting of the Senate, the Senators of each college shall caucus and select one representative to serve on the Corporation Board of Directors.
  4. At-Large Representation: After the first meeting of the Senate, the At-Large Senators shall caucus and, if the number of At-Large Senators is three (3) or above, they shall select one representative to serve on the Corporation Board of Directors.

B.   Duties

  1. Shall direct, with Senate approval, all legal activities and all actions involving legal consultation, lawsuits, and court actions.
  2. May act in lieu of the Senate if there are compelling reasons that the Senate cannot be called into session. There will be a review of the action at the next regular meeting of the Senate.
  3. Shall act as the Election Steering Committee for the operation of all elections.
  4. Shall view the election ballot once before official use.
  5. Shall be responsible for the appointment of At-Large Senators to fill midterm vacancies, which will be approved by a 2/3rds vote of the majority of the Senate membership

Section 5. Advisors

A.   University President: The Senate shall include the University President or a representative as an ex-officio, non-voting advisor to the Senate.

B.   Faculty and Administrative Advisors: The Senate shall select from the faculty or administration of the University two non-voting advisors to the Senate.

C.   Senate Choice: The Senate shall review annually the role of the Advisors. The advisors shall serve staggered, two-year terms, and may be reappointed.

D.   Duties: Advisors shall serve as resource personnel to the Corporation officers and Senate.

E.   The Corporation will have an advisor registered with the Office of Student Activities.

F.   The Corporation will review all advisors at the last business meeting of the senate term.

G.   Removal of an advisor mid-term:

  1. If an advisor has failed to fulfill his/her duties, the Senate may take action to remove the advisor from office.
  2. A motion to initiate removal proceedings may be made by any Senator and must have a second to be entertained by the chair.
  3. Following the motion and second, the chair must send out written notification to the advisor that removal proceedings have been initiated against him/her within three (3) days.
  4. At the regular Senate meeting following the meeting when removal proceedings were initiated, a hearing will be conducted in front of the entire body, where the advisor will have the opportunity to explain him/herself.
  5. In order to remove an advisor from office, three-fourths of the total Senate membership must vote for removal.
  6. Removal Announcement: The Board of Directors must announce the possible removal of the advisor at a regular Senate meeting at least one week prior to the removal vote.

 

Article VI. Corporation Finances

Section 1. Administration of Student Activity Fees

A.   Cooperation: All student organizations and the Senate shall work together to assure that student fees are spent within the limits imposed by the University Activity Fee and Budget Committee and the Senate.

B.   Operations: The Finance Chairperson shall receive a copy of all final budgets approved by the University Activity Fee and Budget Committee, if he or she has not chaired the UAFBC meetings.

C.   Budgetary Changes: The Senate shall have authority to increase or decrease the allocation as requested, but shall not make line item changes.

D.   Reports: All student fee funded organizations shall supply financial reports to the Finance Chairperson at his/her request.

E. Meetings: Tier 2 Organizations participating in General Budgeting must have a representative(s) in attendance at at least one Students’ Association meeting before the start of General Budgeting to describe the group’s activities and explain the use of its student fee allocation. If an organization fails to attend meeting(s) as required, the organization will not be allowed to participate in the General Budgeting process for the following fiscal year. Exceptions to this policy may be made at the discretion of the Finance Committee.

1. Any organization that presents during an Open Forum during the current fiscal year completes the meeting qualifications for General Budgeting. 

2. The Finance Chair will notify organizations of the upcoming Students’ Association meeting dates at least two weeks in advance. 

F. Requirements: All organizations participating in the General Budgeting process must include major events in the Students’ Association Rabbit Report newsletter and display Students’ Association branding on advertising for all student fee-sponsored activities and events. 

 

Section 2. Fee Process

A.   Fund Requests: Any organization seeking funds from student fees must submit a formal request, as designed by the Finance Chairperson and approved by the Senate, to the Finance Chairperson and to the chairperson of the University Activity Fee and Budget Committee.

  1. The Finance Chair will either INITIALLY Accept or Reject the budget based on the request and make suggestions to the Student Organization prior to the budget due date.
  2. After the Finance Chair approves the budget, budgets will be made available to all Senators.

B.   Finance Committee

  1. The Finance Committee shall consist of the following:

a. Finance Chair

b. A minimum of five (5) Corporation Senators.

c. Students’ Association President or Vice President as a voting Ex-Officio member.

2.   The Corporation Vice President and Finance Chair shall supervise applications and assign Senators to serve on the Finance Committee.

b. There shall be only one Finance Committee in order to ensure fairness and equality in all budget requests.

c. In the event of a committee member resignation or removal, the Students’ Association Board of Directors shall fill the vacancy within two (2) weeks.

d. Proxies will only be accepted based on the Senator attendance rules in Article V, Section 3, subsection I and an unapproved absence shall be considered an unexcused absence

3.   The Committee shall review all student organization budgets thoroughly. Including:

a. Review and compare overall and line-item budget history.

b. Find and correct all accounting errors.

c. Review minutes from the previous year’s request and other pertinent information and topics specific to each budget request.

4.   The committee shall meet with representatives of each student organization requesting funds, which should include its organization advisor and student representatives or executive board members at least one week prior to the organization’s scheduled Senate hearing to discuss and finalize the budget request.

a. Necessary corrections to the budget should be made by the organization and an updated copy of the budget request be made available to the Finance Chair for finalization within 48 hours after the meeting.

b. The organization must provide the Committee with the specified number of copies of the finalized budget request at least one week prior to the Senate hearing. In the event of financial hardship on the student organization, the student organization must provide documentation to the Finance Chair to evaluate. In this case, the Students’ Association will provide the necessary copies.

c. The finalized budget shall be distributed to Senators as soon as they are available to the Finance Chair, but no less than five (5) days prior to the Senate hearing.

5.   The Committee will notify the organization of its recommendation at least one week before the organization’s scheduled Senate hearing, usually after the Finance committee has made a decision in the committee meeting.

6.   The Committee will make an allocation recommendation to the Senate.

7.   The Finance Chair will provide minutes from the Committee meeting to the Senate.

8.   The Committee must be prepared to defend its recommendation in the context of the overall budget picture at the Senate hearing. The Committee should be prepared to actively participate in the Senate hearing discussion.

9.   The Finance Committee meetings shall be open to the public.

C.   Senate Hearing

  1. The Senate hearing will be scheduled by the Finance Chair.
  2. Discussion of each student organization budget shall be limited to 30 minutes.

D.   University Activity Fee and Budget Committee

  1. Shall serve as an administrative committee under the office of the President of the University.
  2. It will establish procedures it considers appropriate and necessary for the receipt, evaluation, and approval of budget requests. This will include the relationship with the Senate and the Finance Chairperson.
  3. Shall be chaired by the Corporation President (or his/her appointee).

 

Article VII. Amendments To The By-Laws

 

Section 1. Filing an Amendment

A.   Any member of the Corporation may present an amendment consistent with the corporation Articles of Incorporation., 

B.   Amendment must be submitted in the same form as other legislation by a senator or elected official to the senate floor.

C.   Petition: Amendments may also be initiated by any member of the Corporation with a petition presented to the Senate, bearing the signatures of at least five percent (5%) of the Corporation members.

D.   Readings

1. Amendments shall receive two readings no less than seven calendar days apart with no vote upon the first reading. Any member of the senate may request a full reading of any item of legislation.

2. The Senate chairperson shall have discretion whether amendments incurred at a second reading significantly affect the intent of a given ordinance as to warrant an additional reading.

E.   Publication: The proposed amendment shall be published in the Corporation newspaper and the Corporation newspaper’s website.

Section 2. Senate Vote

A.   Vote: Upon two-thirds vote of its total membership during the second reading, the Senate may initiate an amendment.

B.   Publication: The proposed amendment shall be published in the Corporation newspaper, and the Corporation newspaper’s website.

C.   Opposition

  1. If the amendment is opposed as shown by a petition signed by five percent (5%) of the Corporation members, a special election will be held.
  2. Second Passage: If no petition is presented within two weeks of publication, the amendment will be considered adopted after second passage by the Senate with a two-thirds majority vote of the total Senate membership.

 

Section 3. Final Approval

A.   The President of the University will make final approval of any amendment.

B.   Date of Effectiveness: The revised By-Laws become effective on the date the President of the University approves them which shall be no earlier than fourteen (14) calendar days after approval of the senate to allow a petition of opposition to be filed.

 

Section 4. Permanent Copy: All By-Laws shall be prepared in permanent form and kept on file in the Corporation office and shall be available to the Corporation members upon request.