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VI. Constitution of the Faculty Senate

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VI. Constitution of the Faculty Senate

Article IV: Committees

Section 1. Standing Committees

The Faculty Senate shall have standing committees to which the speaker of the Faculty Senate will normally refer matters for study and for a report before these matters come to the floor of the Faculty Senate for action. Upon a vote of a majority of those voting members present and voting, the Faculty Senate may take up matters without referral to a committee, or may set aside a report of a committee. Committees may take no action on behalf of the Faculty Senate, except for the Steering Committee as provided in Section 5.e. below.

Section 2. Membership

Standing committees shall be composed of voting members of the Faculty Senate who are appointed by the Steering Committee, except for the membership of the Steering Committee, which is provided in Section 5.1 below.

A member of a committee may be removed from service on the committee for nonperformance of duties, misconduct, ineligibility, or other just cause. Upon recommendation of the chair of the standing committee, the Steering Committee will vote on removal of the member's committee appointment. The speaker of the Faculty Senate shall report the removal to the senate, and the secretary shall notify the academic unit of the member who has been removed from the committee. The chair of the committee may appoint a replacement for the removed member of the committee, preferably from the same academic college.

Section 3. Meetings

Committee meetings shall be called by the chair of the committee as needed. The quorum for each committee is a majority of its members.

Section 4. Procedures

Each standing committee of the Faculty Senate shall have the authority to adopt an operating procedure for the internal governance of that committee, providing that:

  1. No part of the operating procedure conflicts with this constitution or any of its bylaws.
  2. The Steering Committee is kept informed of current operating procedures.

If, in the opinion of the Steering Committee, operating procedures for the various committees will conflict in the transaction of senate business, the speaker shall advise the chairs of the respective committees regarding the conflicting procedures. If the committees are unable to resolve the conflict, the senate shall make the final decision as to acceptable operating procedures.

Section 5. The Steering Committee

  1. The Steering Committee shall be composed of the speaker, the speaker pro tempore, the secretary, the treasurer, the marshal, and the chairs of all standing committees. The speaker of Faculty Senate shall serve as chair of the Steering Committee.
  2. The Steering Committee shall aid the speaker in setting the agenda for meetings of the Faculty Senate.
  3. The Steering Committee shall regularly review the actions of all Faculty Senate committees and shall provide appropriate leadership and direction for their proper functioning.
  4. Immediately after the organizational meeting of the new Faculty Senate each April, the new officers shall meet and recommend the appointment of the Faculty Senate members among the appointed standing committees of the Faculty Senate. Each member shall be assigned to at least one committee based on preferences supplied by the members and the needs of the Faculty Senate. Whenever possible, all academic colleges shall be represented on each committee.
  5. Between the end of the spring semester and the beginning of the fall semester, the Steering Committee, including newly elected officers, shall serve as an interim governance body. Personnel or policy issues normally requiring larger Faculty Senate deliberation can be considered by this group, as necessary, with recommendations being formulated for Faculty Senate action during the fall. Issues considered, decisions made, and recommendations formulated shall be presented for review and concurrence at the first fall meeting of the full Faculty Senate.

Section 6. The Nominations and Elections Committee

  1. Membership of the Nominations and Elections Committee shall consist of at least one member from each academic college, when possible. The marshal of the Faculty Senate shall serve as chair of this committee, but the marshal's college should, if possible, have a representative in addition to the marshal.
  2. The committee shall oversee, through the agency of the Faculty Senate marshal, the elections of members and alternates. In the event of a contested election, the committee shall conduct a full investigation and make a recommendation to the Faculty Senate. The Faculty Senate shall make the final decision as to the seating of members and alternates by majority vote of the Senate.
  3. Before the organizational meeting, the Nominations and Elections Committee shall nominate at least one candidate for each senate office and shall present these nominations at the organizational meeting of the newly-elected Faculty Senate. The committee shall supervise the elections of Faculty Senate officers held in the organizational meeting of the newly elected Faculty Senate.
  4. The committee shall oversee the removal of officers and members from the Senate and from committee appointments for nonperformance of duties, misconduct, ineligibility, or other just cause.
  5. Each year, the committee shall solicit the faculty to find members who are interested and qualified to serve on general university committees or commissions.

Section 7. The Faculty Concerns Committee

  1. The Faculty Concerns Committee shall consist of at least one member from each academic college, when possible. The speaker pro tempore chairs this committee, but the speaker pro tempore's college should have a representative in addition to the speaker pro tempore, if possible.
  2. The Faculty Concerns Committee studies, formulates and recommends action on university-wide concerns pertaining to:
    1. Methods of selection and appointment of faculty, including academic unit heads and administrative officers;
    2. Tenure, promotions, salaries, academic leaves, consulting practices, research and publication of instructional faculty members;
    3. Fringe benefits and working conditions of instructional faculty members;
    4. Issues concerning academic freedom and responsibilities; and
    5. Development and utilization of university resources and services as they affect faculty morale and professional development of instructional faculty members.

Section 8. The Student Relations Committee

  1. The Student Relations Committee shall consist of at least one member from each academic college, when possible. This committee shall elect a chair from the membership of the committee at its first meeting following the Organizational meeting in April.
  2. The chair of the committee shall serve as a member of the Steering Committee.
  3. This committee shall identify and make recommendations concerning matters of mutual responsibility and concern among faculty and students.

Section 9. The Committe on Academic Policies

  1. The Committee on Academic Policies shall consist of at least one member from each academic college, when possible. This committee shall elect a chair from the membership of the committee at its first meeting following the Organizational meeting in April. The chair of the committee shall serve as a member of the Steering Committee.
  2. This committee shall consider and make recommendations concerning new or existing academic policies of the university, including but not limited to degree requirements, credit/no-credit courses, special studies, etc.

Section 10. The Faculty Appeals Committee

  1. The Faculty Appeals Committee shall consist of one member from each academic college. Members on this committee must be either tenured or have served at least six years of full-time teaching at JMU. If the college requirement cannot be met from among members of the Faculty Senate, the Steering Committee may appoint as a member of the committee a tenured faculty member, or a faculty member who has served at least six years of full-time teaching at James Madison University, who is not a member of the Faculty Senate. Academic Unit heads, and assistant and associate deans are ineligible for membership on this committee. The committee shall elect its own chair at its first meeting following the Organizational meeting in April. The chair of the committee shall serve as a member of the Steering Committee.
  2. This committee shall receive appeals from instructional faculty members, determine whether a hearing will be held, and if so, select a Hearing Committee, under the terms of the Faculty Handbook.

Section 11. Budget Committee

  1. The Budget Committee shall consist of at least one member from each academic college, when possible. As necessary, appropriate, and with the consent of the Steering Committee, the Budget Committee chair may appoint additional faculty members who are not Faculty Senate members to its membership. The committee shall elect a chair from membership of the committee at its first meeting following the Organizational meeting in April. The chair of the committee shall serve as a member of the Steering Committee.
  2. The Budget Committee will advise the Faculty Senate regarding the fiscal operation of the University as it is relevant to the University's academic mission so that the faculty may provide its recommendations to the University's administration.