188.8.131.52 The Constitution of the Ithaca College Staff Council
The name of this organization shall be the Ithaca College Staff Council.
The mission of the Ithaca College Staff Council is to serve the staff constituency of Ithaca College in a positive manner, advocating so as to place the needs of the workforce in the forefront. The process will be achieved by:
- Creating an atmosphere in which constituents are willing and able to make requests and ask questions.
- Generating ideas and entertaining requests that work to improve employee benefits and the work environment.
- Conducting research and compiling data to support motions to be forwarded to other departments or committees.
- Coordinating activities to increase staff morale and facilitate community involvement.
- Communicating decisions and efforts to the constituencies to further understanding of the accomplishments and processes of the Council.
- Providing an opportunity to collaborate with departments across campus.
- Acting as a liaison for staff to upper administration.
The purpose of the Staff Council is to act as the representative body of all non-faculty staff of Ithaca College. Staff shall be defined as all benefits-eligible employees who are not part of Administrative Assembly. As such, it shall have the power to review and make inquiries into matters of the campus college community for the benefit of all concerned, and;
- to increase the sense of identity, recognition, and worth of each staff member in his/her relationship to the College;
- to identify concerns relating to staff and to seek solutions;
- to provide a channel of communication with administration and faculty;
- to promote staff development and to recommend policies which aid in retaining highly qualified personnel; and
- to integrate staff into campus governance and existing college affairs, and to organize and conduct meetings in order to make recommendations on all matters affecting the welfare of its constituency and to direct to the appropriate persons or councils.
The composition and responsibilities of the Ithaca College Staff Council shall be outlined by its bylaws, and the Council shall report its recommendations to the Senior Vice President and General Counsel, Division of Human and Legal Resources, or designee for decision.
Its composition and responsibilities shall be outlined by its bylaws and it shall report its recommendations to the Senior Vice President and General Counsel for the Division of Human and Legal Resources or designee for decision.
- Review present policies of interest to its constituency, gain a consensus on such matters, and communicate these findings to the appropriate persons and councils.
- Formulate a budget in conjunction with the Senior Vice President and General Counsel for the Division of Human and Legal Resources for use of Staff Council.
- Call all-College staff meetings when necessary and appropriate to discuss matters of its own initiative as well as matters directed to it by other Councils.
- Respond to issues referred to Staff Council by constituents, Faculty Council, Student Government Council, the All-Ithaca College Communications Council, standing committees, the Senior Vice President and General Counsel for the Division of Human and Legal Resources, and the Vice President for Human Resources.
- Refer items to appropriate existing committees to investigate issues which have an impact on the College community as a whole.
- Form committees and ad-hoc committees, as needed, to address issues and make recommendations to the full body, the Senior Vice President and General Counsel for the Division of Human and Legal Resources, and the Vice President for Human Resources.
- Determine the Staff Council Executive Committee member(s) (Article VI of the bylaws) to represent the Council on the All-Ithaca College Communications Council.
- Approve the selection of staff justices and staff members for all-College committees.
The Staff Council shall have the authority to make bylaws on such matters as membership, meeting procedures, voting, committees, and other organizational matters and needs of the Council. Such bylaws may not be in conflict with this constitution, the charter or bylaws of Ithaca College, or any other governing body of the College recognized by the Board of Trustees of Ithaca College.
Amendments to the Constitution
- Any voting member of the Staff Council at any Staff Council meeting may propose an amendment to this constitution, which shall be published to the membership at least fourteen calendar days before final action on it can be taken by the Staff Council.
- Such amendment shall be approved by two-thirds of the voting members of the Staff Council.
- Membership is open to all staff of Ithaca College as defined in Articles III and V of the constitution.
- The areas (or the grouping of areas) to be represented and the number of representatives from each area are to be reviewed by the Executive Committee each year. Any change will be determined by a majority of Staff Council before elections are held on or before the April meeting or when deemed necessary and appropriate.
- The representative of each area is to be elected by a plurality vote by the members of that area only, to serve a two-year term from June 1 through the last day in May, with an approximate equal number of terms expiring each year. Elections shall be finalized on or before the April meeting. Due to confidentiality, numbers of votes received for each candidate will not be released.
- If no one comes forth within a designated area to represent that area, the Executive Committee may appoint up to 6 at-large members with the advice and consent of Staff Council.
- The Council will consider any petition for the formation of additional areas. Any new area must have a minimum of 10 constituents. A new area shall be established by a vote of 2/3 of the membership of the Council.
- Any constituency whose representative has more than 20 people has the option to petition the Council for a second representative, provided the additional one represents a minimum of 10 people. The method of determining specific representation will be left up to the constituents and representative(s) involved. A new area shall be established by a vote of 2/3 of the membership of the Council.
- Once the Chairperson of the Council is nominated and elected from the body of elected representatives, the group represented by the Chairperson shall elect another representative if more than half the term remains. If no one comes forth during the nomination process, the procedure outlined in Article I(3)(i) shall be followed.
- The outgoing chairperson shall be a non-voting, ex-officio member of the Council for one year following that person’s term as chairperson. Exception to this would be if the chairperson was removed from office. (See Article VIII.)
- If a member is unable to complete an elected term, another representative shall be elected by the area if more than half the term remains. If no one comes forth, the procedure outlined in Article I(3)(i) shall be followed. At the discretion of the Executive Committee, an election will take place or a proxy will be chosen, if less than half of the term remains.
- If a member moves to another constituency and more than half the term remains, an election will be held to replace the representative. If no one comes forth, the procedure outlined in Article I(3)(i) shall be followed. At the discretion of the Executive Committee, an election will take place or a proxy will be chosen if less than half of the term remains.
- A Staff Council officer who moves to another constituency will have a replacement representative using the procedures outlined in Article I(3)(i). The officer may remain in the elected executive position.
- Attendance at Staff Council meetings by members is mandatory. Members unable to attend a Staff Council meeting must notify someone on the Executive Committee in order to be excused. The member is also required to send a proxy to the meeting in the member's place.
- The roll shall be called within the first five minutes of all Staff Council regular meetings being called to order. Representatives shall request leaves of the Chair to arrive late or leave early.
- Unexcused absences without a proxy will be limited to two per year. Three cumulative absences during any academic year without proxy will compel the Council to solicit the voluntary resignation from Council of the member in question. Once the two excused absences have been granted then all subsequent absences will be considered unexcused.
- An excused absence is defined as approved leave in the employee handbook. This includes sick, vacation, discretionary, jury duty, military leave, a department-scheduled training, etc.
- An unexcused absence is defined as missing a scheduled, special, or emergency meeting without informing a member of the Executive Committee.
- The approval of excused absences is at the discretion of the Executive Committee.
- A proxy is a member of your constituency who will represent you at a Staff Council meeting.
Responsibilities and Duties
- Active participation in regular, special, and committee meetings.
- Communicate meeting information and minutes to constituents.
- Solicit concerns from constituents.
- Fulfill the responsibilities of any respective committee appointment.
- Regular Meetings
- Staff Council shall meet monthly unless otherwise indicated by the Chairperson and Executive Committee.
- For a regular meeting, a simple majority of the active membership shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business.
- Special/Emergency Meetings
- Special/emergency meetings of the Staff Council may be called at any time by the Chairperson, Executive Committee, or 1/3 of the members of Staff Council. Notice shall be five (5) days in advance. Special/emergency meetings may act only on such business as clearly indicated in the notice of the meeting.
- For a special/emergency meeting, a simple majority of the membership shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business.
- Standing and Ad-hoc Committees
- The Staff Council or Executive Committee shall establish, as needed, any standing or ad-hoc committees. Each committee shall have a chairperson. The chairperson shall be appointed from the Council membership. Each committee may elect a co-chairperson as necessary.
- A standing committee is defined as an ongoing committee.
- The standing committees shall follow the Staff Council Committee Charges document.
- An ad-hoc committee is defined as a committee with a set charge established for a limited time to address a specific issue.
- Work performed by Staff Council Committees (Standing and Ad-hoc) must be presented to the Staff Council body for discussions, motions, and votes before any action can be taken.
- Each staff council representative is expected to serve on a standing or all-college committee. Representatives must be approved by plurality vote of Staff Council at its first organizational meeting to serve during his/her elected term.
- Members of the campus community may serve on a Staff Council committee or subcommittee.
- Each committee shall maintain files that contain meeting minutes and other relevant information. These files will be kept by the committee chairperson and will be made available to the Executive Committee of Staff Council upon request. The committee chairperson or designee is responsible for a committee report at a regularly scheduled Staff Council meeting. Upon request, files may be made available to the Senior Vice President and General Counsel and the Vice President for the Division of Human Resources.
Officers of the Staff Council Executive Committee
- The following officers shall be elected by a plurality vote of the Staff Council at the May meeting to serve a two-year term from June 1 to May 31: Chairperson, Vice Chairperson, Secretary, Communications and Public Relations Officer, and Treasurer. These officers shall comprise the Executive Committee.
- Qualifications for serving on the Executive Committee
- Have served at least one year as a representative of Staff Council.
- Must currently be serving as an active council representative.
- May be elected to serve in the same officer role for a limit of 2 consecutive two-year terms.
- Officers may be elected to a new officer position if they reach the consecutive term limit.
Duties of Officers
- Acquire a working knowledge of parliamentary law and procedure and thorough understanding of the bylaws and standing rules of the Ithaca College Staff Council.
- Preside and maintain order at all meetings.
- Serve as spokesperson for the Staff Council in all matters of the College.
- Preside over the Executive Committee of Staff Council and see that the responsibilities of each member of the Executive Committee and Standing Committees are carried out.
- Serve as chairperson at an all-college staff meeting (staff as defined in Article II of the Constitution of Ithaca College Staff Council) called by the Chairperson of Staff Council.
- Serve as chairperson of the Executive Committee of the Ithaca College Staff Council.
- Maintain open communication with the Senior Vice President and General Counsel of the Division of Human Resources and Legal Affairs and the Vice President for Human Resources.
- Report on all Executive Committee meetings to Staff Council representatives at Staff Council meetings.
- Collaborate with the chairs of the other governance councils to convene the executive committees of those groups on a regular basis to discuss issues of mutual interest.
- Vice Chairperson
- Assist the Chair and the Policy and Operations Committee in conducting the election of executive officers and the appointment of staff representatives to serve on all-college committees.
- Assume duties of Chair if the Chair resigns or is removed.
- Take minutes at the meeting of Staff Council in the absence of the Secretary.
- Call a meeting to order in the absence of the Chairperson and preside over the meeting of Staff Council.
- Coordinate new representative orientation activities and assist in the compilation of materials for orientation.
- Notify Staff Council representatives in danger of removal from Staff Council.
- Keep the minutes of Staff Council meetings.
- Take roll and mark absences or provide and collect an official sign-in sheet at regular and emergency meetings of Staff Council.
- Distribute minutes and the agenda to the representatives at least five business days prior to each meeting of Staff Council.
- Take charge of all documents belonging to the Council when requested.
- Notify the Executive Committee of Staff Council Representatives with two unexcused absences.
- Maintain a spreadsheet of current motions and two years’ worth of past motions, with status updates.
- Call a meeting to order in the absence of the Chairperson and Vice Chairperson and preside until the election of a chairperson pro tem.
- In conjunction with the Vice Chair, coordinate and complete all facets of Staff Council representatives’ election process.
- Communications and Public Relations Officer
- Maintain a list of all officers and Council representatives.
- Provide representatives a report of their benefits eligible constituents.
- Provide/initiate drafts and type all correspondence from the Chairperson.
- Develop an educational campaign that promotes/markets the Staff Council to the campus community and, in particular, to the college staff.
- Collaborate with Human Resources to identify reporting needs for Staff Council.
- Oversight of the Staff Council website, email, and social media account.
- Receive and bank all monies due to Staff Council.
- Maintain bookkeeping records of such funds.
- Pay bills incurred by officers and Council representatives in the discharge of approved actions related to Staff Council when clearly authorized and when receipts for expenditures are attached.
- Disburse monies as the Council may direct.
- Serve as an ex-officio representative of any ad hoc committee involved in coordinating fund-raising activities.
- Provide direct, on-going assistance for the Vice Chair and the Secretary with the representative election process.
- Meet with Human Resources to create a budget for the next academic year.
- Purchase supplies for Staff Council use as needed.
- Responsibilities Shared by All Officers of Staff Council
- Plan the annual Staff Council retreat.
- Plan and schedule meetings.
- Assist in the development of all correspondence.
- Formulate the agenda for Staff Council meetings.
- Approve drafts of Staff Council meeting minutes.
- Attend all Executive Committee meetings.
- Each Executive Committee Officer will serve as Ex-Officio to at least one Standing Ad-Hoc Committee of Staff Council.
- Reach out to Committee Chairs about attending an Executive Council meeting or when the business of a Standing or Ad-Hoc Committee needs to be placed on the agenda for Staff Council meetings.
- Plan an orientation for new representatives after elections in April and before the June meeting.
- Assist the Chairperson as spokesperson for the Staff Council, as appropriate, in all matters with College officials.
- Monitor adherence to operating procedures within Staff Council in accordance with the Ithaca College Governance and Committee Structure (Section 1.6 of the Ithaca College Policy Manual) and Robert's Rules of Order.
- Act on behalf of the Staff Council of Ithaca College between meetings within the limits of the Ithaca College Staff Council Constitution and Bylaws.
Removal from Council Membership
- An officer of the Staff Council may be removed from Council and relieved of the officer's duties by a 2/3 vote of the Council membership.
- A Council member may be removed from Council and relieved of the member's duties by a petition signed by 2/3 of the constituents of the area or by 2/3 of the Council members.
- Representatives found not in compliance with Article II.C of the Bylaws will compel the Council to solicit the voluntary resignation from Council of the member in question. Any further absences will require the Council to declare such seat(s) vacant and call for the appointment/election of a replacement.
- An officer or Council member who is subject to removal shall be granted a hearing by the Executive Committee if the person so requests prior to the formal action.
- If the Chairperson is dismissed or resigns from the Executive Committee of Staff Council, the Chairperson will be asked to resign from the All-Ithaca College Communications Committee.
The Vice Chairperson, in conjunction with the Policy and Operations Committee, will complete all facets of the representative elections.
The Chairperson will appoint members of the Policy and Operations Committee to run the Officer Election. The Vice Chairperson will guide the appointed members of the Policy and Operations Committee in all facets of the officer elections prior to and at the May meeting. This will include a call for nominations, completing ballots, and distributing and counting the ballots at the election.
Robert's Rules of Order
- All other rules and procedures are to be congruent with Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised.
Amendment of the Bylaws
- To amend or suspend the bylaws of the Ithaca College Staff Council requires a 2/3 vote of the membership. The procedure shall be the same as stated in the Article VI of the constitution.
Last Updated: May 10, 2018