The P&S Council constitution describes the purpose of the council, as well as, the membership and representation, council elections, council officers, meetings, quorum and voting, amendment and the rules and by-laws.
PROFESSIONAL AND SCIENTIFIC (P&S) COUNCIL
A Professional and Scientific (P&S) Council was established in 1978 for the purpose of studying, formulating, and recommending to administrative officers of UNI policies of interest to Professional and Scientific employees. The Council, consisting of representatives elected by division members, meets monthly during University office hours. Meetings are open to the public unless voted into executive sessions. Minutes from each P&S Council meeting are sent to all P&S staff members. The minutes include a list of current council officers and representatives. Meeting notices and current membership lists are posted on the P&S Council Web site. The Constitution and Rules and Bylaws of the Professional and Scientific Council are listed below.
PROFESSIONAL AND SCIENTIFIC CONSTITUTION
Article I: Name
The name of the organization shall be the University of Northern Iowa Professional and Scientific Council, hereinafter referred to as the Council.
Article II: PURPOSES
The purposes of this Council shall be:
- To promote communication among University Professional and Scientific employees and ensure a medium for discussion of and action on mutual problems and concerns.
- To serve as a liaison group between University Professional and Scientific employees and the administrative officers of the University and to respond in a consultative manner to inquiries made by the administrative officers of the University.
- To study, formulate and recommend to the administrative officers of the University policies of interest to the University Professional and Scientific employees.
- Such other purposes as may be proposed by the Council or administrative officers and adopted by a two-thirds vote of the membership and with the approval of the President's Executive Management Team (EMT).
Article III: MEMBERSHIP AND REPRESENTATION
Section 1. The Council shall be composed of at least 13 seats. Each seat shall be occupied by an elected member of the Council. These members shall be elected from the University Professional and Scientific employees (excluding persons with appointments to temporary positions and those exempt from the P&S Policies and Procedures). The number of members representing the administrative divisions will be proportional to the current number of P&S employees in each division, and the rest at-large.
Section 2. Elected Council members shall be announced at the April meeting, introduced at the May meeting and shall take office July 1.
Section 3. Council membership shall normally be for a three-year term, with representative terms staggered so approximately one-third of the representatives are elected annually. Council year shall run from July 1 through June 30. Council term length may be adjusted to ensure staggered terms within a division and among at-large members.
Section 4. An individual shall not serve more than two consecutive terms as a member of the Council.
Section 5. The President of the University shall appoint to the Council a nonvoting administrative liaison person from the President's EMT for the purpose of communication between the President's EMT and the Council.
Section 6. The Director of Human Resource Services (or a designee from Human Resource Services) shall serve as an ex officio member of the Council. Also the Director of Human Resource Services shall designate an additional Human Resource Services staff member to serve as Secretary of the Council and shall be responsible for assisting with the coordination of Council activities. Neither representative will have a vote.
Section 7. The proportional guidelines for the representation of the divisions are to be 1 member for every 50 P&S employees. In calculating the number of seats for each division, Human Resource Services and the Council President and Vice-President, will determine the total number of employees for each division and then divide by 50. In the case of an uneven result, a simple round up will determine the number of seats.
Section 8. The elected members will be represented by the University’s defined divisions. Each division will always have a minimum representation of 2 seats. At-large will also have a minimum of 1 seat, but no more than 3.
Article IV: COUNCIL ELECTION
Section 1. The election for Council representation shall take place by secret ballot once a year in March during the first full week following spring break.
Section 2. All University Professional and Scientific employees (excluding persons with appointments to temporary positions and those exempt from P & S Policies and Procedures) shall have the right to nominate and vote for the candidate(s) from their division as well as for all at-large representative(s) in accordance with election procedures established.
Section 3. A vacancy will be filled at the next regular meeting of the Council after the vacancy is declared. The candidate from the appropriate division or at- large category having the next highest number of votes in the last Council election will fill the vacancy. In the event no candidate is available, the President of the Council shall appoint a person from the appropriate division or at-large category to the Council to serve until the position can be filled at the next annual election for the remainder of the term.
Section 4. Members’ first term begins when they are elected to office. If a member fills in for a vacancy, that time of service will not be counted toward the term limit.
Article V: COUNCIL OFFICERS
Section 1: The officers of the Council shall be President and Vice-President.
Section 2: Officers of the Council shall be elected in May and take office on July 1st.
Section 3: The President of the Council may succeed himself/herself directly only twice. The Vice-President may succeed himself/herself directly only once.
Section 4: Duties of the officers may include but not be limited to: presiding over meetings, serving the council as liaison to all other representative campus groups and bringing campus issues to the full Council for consideration.
Article VI: MEETINGS
Section 1: The Council meetings shall be held monthly, during University office hours.
Section 2: Special meetings, during University office hours, may be called upon the request of at least five Council members or by the Council President.
Section 3: All Council meetings shall be open to the public unless voted into executive session. Participation in discussion shall be limited to Council representatives and the administrative liaison person unless otherwise approved by the Council President or a majority of Council members present.
Article VII: QUORUM AND VOTING
Section 1: A simple majority of the members of the Council shall constitute a quorum authorized to transact business presented at any regular or special meeting of the Council.
Section 2: Voting by the Council membership shall be by voice or a show of hands except when a written ballot is deemed appropriate by the Council President.
Section 3: A simple majority vote by the members present shall carry a motion, except a motion to amend the Constitution. Amendment is handled in accordance with Article VIII of the Constitution.
Section 4: If a Council representative cannot attend a Council meeting, a designated proxy shall be sent in his or her place. Each Council member shall choose and designate by name a proxy for the year and submit the name to the Council President at the August meeting. The proxy shall be knowledgeable of Council proceedings and shall have the same privileges as regular Council representatives, but only while acting in official (proxy) capacity.
Section 5: If a representative is absent from three meetings without a proxy during any consecutive twelve months of his/her term, the seat will be declared vacant.
Article VIII: AMENDMENTS
Section 1. A proposed amendment to the Constitution shall be presented in writing to the Council president who shall bring the proposal to the next regular Council meeting for initial discussion and simple majority vote to determine if the proposal shall proceed in the process. If the proposed amendment passes this vote, following that meeting the Council president shall send copies to all University Professional and Scientific employees (excluding those with appointments to temporary positions and those exempt from P & S Policies and Procedures) at least ten working days prior to the next regular meeting of the Council where it shall be read and acted upon.
Section 2. Amendment to the Constitution of the Council shall be made only by a two-thirds concurrence of the Council membership.
Section 3. Amendments to the Constitution which are approved by the Council shall be submitted to the President's EMT prior to formal adoption.
RULES AND BYLAWS
I. Nomination and Election Procedures for Council
A. Nomination Procedures
- The Nominating Committee membership shall be announced at the January meeting. Members shall consist of one representative from each Standing Committee. Nominating Committee representatives are restricted from running for office.
- Human Resource Services shall prepare a list of eligible voters, by division, as of the last day in January. This list will be given to the Council President at the February meeting to serve as the official figures, by division, for selecting names for nomination and determining proportional representation.
- The Nominating Committee shall contact candidates to determine interest and availability.
- At least two candidates for each single open position should be nominated, or no fewer than two more than a total plural number to be elected for each division or at-large category.
B. Election Procedures
- The Nominating Committee shall be responsible for compiling, distributing, collecting, and counting ballots.
- The deadline date shall be determined for return of ballots.
- The election ballot shall be compiled and distributed to staff eligible to vote with provision made for write-in candidates in accordance with Article IV, Section 2 of the Constitution.
- Voting members shall be instructed to vote for the exact number requested on the ballot. Directions on the ballot are to be clearly stated and must be in accordance with Article IV of the Constitution.
- The Nominating Committee shall report winners and total number voting.
- For each position, winners shall be determined by highest vote count.
- In case of a tie, a run-off election shall be held within the affected division (or whole body if the tie is in the at-large category). If the run-off results in a tie, a flip of a coin shall determine the winner.
- The Nominating Committee shall keep the ballots from the election for at least one year from the date of the election.
C. Election of Council officers
- Election of Council officers is completed in the May Council meeting by accepting nominations followed by a simple majority vote. Following the election, the Nominating Committee may be used to coordinate the election of Council officers.
- Voting will be completed by current members.
A. Selection Procedures for Standing Committees
- Each standing committee shall be represented by members from at least three divisions. The P&S Council President shall select committee members from the Professional and Scientific eligible membership. The Council will approve committee membership at each August meeting. At least one member of each committee must be from the Council. Term on each committee will be for one year with the option for reappointment.
- The committee chair will be appointed by the P & S Council President and approved by the Council. The committee shall select its own recording secretary from among the committee membership.
B. Standing Committees
- Policies and Procedures Committee
This committee shall regularly assess the value and effectiveness of the P & S policies and procedures and their implementation and shall work with appropriate personnel to develop and recommend any revisions or strategies that best serve the interests of the employees and the university. These recommendations will be presented to the Council for approval with subsequent submission for University approval following Policy 0.0.
An annual written report of activities will be prepared by this committee at the end of the council year. Status reports will be made to the Council as needed or upon request by the Council President.
- Salary and Fringe Benefits Committee
This committee shall regularly assess the implementation of the Professional and Scientific policies and procedures as related to salary, fringe benefits and promotions, and shall work with appropriate personnel to develop strategies to best serve P & S employees and the university; these policies and recommendations will be presented to the Council for approval and or discussion. An annual written report of activities will be prepared by this committee at the end of the Council year. Status reports will be made to the Council as needed or upon request of the Council President.
- Employee Issues Committee
This committee shall:
a. advocate and monitor proper adherence to the P&S Policies and Procedures for P&S employees;
b. provide a confidential forum for P&S employees relative to employee rights and responsibilities issues;
c. provide information to P&S employees relative to employee rights and responsibilities issues, with referral to pertinent university offices, as appropriate;
d. work with Human Resource Services, as appropriate, to effect resolution to employee rights and responsibilities issues.
The committee shall keep the Council informed of any employee rights issues and problems. An annual report of activities will be prepared by the committee at the end of the council year. Status reports will be made to the Council as needed or upon request by the Council President.
- Employee Relations Committee
This committee shall explore, promote and coordinate activities that enhance interaction and communication within the Professional & Scientific staff membership. The committee shall also identify appropriate public relation efforts and coordinate information from the Council to our constituents.
Potential activities and programs will be presented to the Council for approval. An annual written report of activities will be prepared by the committee at the end of the Council year. Status reports will be made to the Council as needed upon request by the Council President.
- Communications Committee
This Committee shall primarily be responsible for the maintenance of the P&S Council World Wide Web site, updating, revising and adding information as necessary. The committee shall also coordinate other communications for the P&S Council, as necessary.
Recommendations will be presented to the Council for approval. An annual written report of activities will be prepared by the committee at the end of the council year. Status reports will be made to the council as needed or upon request by the Council President.
- Executive Committee
a. The Executive Committee is charged to formulate goals, strategies, and plans for Council activities. It will also advise, or assist members of the Council in carrying out the responsibilities of their office.
b. The members of the Executive Committee are the Council President, Vice-President, and each standing committee chairs, or their designee.
c. The Executive Committee is to meet at least once per academic semester, or at the request of the Council President.