Rules and Procedures

1.  All matters on which the Senate takes action shall be presented as motions, this includes proposals, resolutions, and recommendations from committees/task forces.

2.  Motions will be considered major motions under the following situations:

a.  All motions to create, suspend, or close an academic program (as defined by the Program Life Cycle procedures) and all changes to University academic policy
b.  When constructing the agenda, the Senate Executive Committee determines a motion is one in which the subject is likely to be controversial, the subject is particularly important, or upon which there is an evident lack of agreement in the Senate.
c.  One-third of the voting members present at a Senate meeting votes to consider a motion as a major motion.

3.  All major motions on which the Senate shall take action will have two readings in two separate, scheduled meetings of the Senate unless it qualifies under exceptions listed in Section 3c.  Normally the First and Second readings will occur at consecutive Senate meetings.

a.  First Reading:

i.  Major motions will be provided to the Faculty in writing prior to the First Reading.
ii.  At the First Reading, the motion is subject to discussion and clarification, but a vote on the motion itself may not be taken.
iii.  The primary authors of the motion/proposal/resolution/policy (faculty and/or administrators) shall be asked to attend the First Reading to present an overview of the proposal/policy and answer questions.
iv. After the First Reading, the committee or individual sponsoring the motion will consider the questions raised and recommendations made in the discussion and make any appropriate revisions; this will facilitate expeditious handling of the motion during the Second Reading.

b.  Second Reading:

i. Prior to the Second Reading, a revised motion will be provided to the Faculty in writing.
ii.  At the Second Reading, the motion is subject to further discussion, amendments, or other actions permitted by Robert’s Rules of Order, including a vote on the motion itself.


c.  Exceptions to First/Second Reading requirement for major motions

i.  Any Senator may request a waiver of the Second Reading requirement by moving that a major motion be “fast-tracked”, which requires a second.
ii.  If the motion to “fast-track” is approved by the 3/4 of Senate members present, the Senate may take formal action on the major motion at a single meeting. If the motion to “fast-track” fails, the motion will return for a Second Reading at the next scheduled Senate meeting. 

4.  All other Senate business may be handled in one reading.


Adopted January 19, 2016

Officers, Senators, Standing Committee and Task Force Chairs and members with sabbaticals or leaves that will overlap with the terms of their position must notify the President and Parliamentarian that they will either:  (1) Continue to perform the duties of the position while on sabbatical or leave, or (2) Resign from the position.

Advanced notification of intentions will help the Senate in conducting its business and allow these positions to be filled in a timely manner.

Adopted February 19, 2013

More than two absences (excluding medical or family leave) from regular full Senate meetings during an academic year will constitute a vacancy. In other words, on the third absence during an academic year, the absent Senator's seat will be considered vacant, triggering the constitutional procedure for filling a vacancy in the Senate. Meeting dates and times will be posted on the Senate website prior to the beginning of the academic year.

Adopted September 19, 2017