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1590 - Unit Bylaws

Last updated: January 01, 2021

PREAMBLE: Responding to widespread disparities among unit bylaws, the Faculty-Staff Handbook and Regents policies, this section was adopted by the university faculty at its April 27, 2004 meeting. In July 2012 changes were made to provide guidance, clarify language and define "unit". In July 2014 language was added to ensure tenure-track faculty are involved in review of non-tenure-track faculty. In July 2018 the elimination of the requirement to do annual position descriptions in FSH 3050 necessitated a change to this policy to remove language that referred to an annual process. . In 2021 the section was extensively revised to clarify procedure and provide for the adoption of a standard university bylaws template.(rev. 7-12, 7-14, 1-19, 1-21)

A. Development and Approval of Bylaws. (rev. 1-21)

A-1. Each unit shall develop bylaws  setting forth the rules by which the unit is governed. For purposes of this policy, units shall be those listed in the chart of the organization of the university faculty in FSH 1560.

A-2. Unit bylaws are subject to compliance with laws and regulations instituted by higher governing authorities in the following order of hierarchy (see RGP I.A.4.):

a. Applicable federal laws and regulations
b. Applicable state laws and regulations  
c. Board of Regents/State Board of Education policies and procedures
d. University-wide policies and procedures
e. College/division policies and procedures
f. Department policies and procedures.

A-3. Units shall develop their bylaws in collaboration with appropriate unit administrators. Bylaws must be approved by a majority of unit faculty (see FSH 1520 II.1, II.3 and FSH 1540 A). Following unit faculty approval, bylaws are sent to the policy coordinator for review. The policy coordinator shall then, as appropriate, send the bylaws for approval to the dean, the provost, the president, and, if required, Board of Regents (RGP I.S.3, II.B.3. II.G.1). The policy coordinator shall provide the provost with a copy of the final approved bylaws. (rev. 7-12, ed. 7-14).

A-4. At least every five years, each unit shall review their bylaws and go through the steps in A-3.

B. Content. A unit’s bylaws shall contain the following information and conform to the standard university bylaws template provided by the provost: (ed. 7-12, 7-14, rev. 1-21)

  • The name, objectives, and authority of the unit.
  • The membership of the unit.
  • For each administrative position, the title, responsibilities, procedures for appointment, procedures for formal review, and term of appointment.
  • Policies on unit governance, including meeting procedures, quorum, participation at meetings, student representation, and voting rights.
  • Policies on standing and special committees, including function, membership and selection procedure, terms of office, meeting procedures, and vacancies.
  • The organizational structure of the unit.
  • The unit’s criteria and procedures for appointment to rank, annual performance evaluation and third-year review.

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