Amended May 2015
The Health Sciences Center (HSC) Staff Senate shall represent all staff employees. Any permanent staff employee (any individual with 50% FTE or more employment) shall be eligible for election to membership as a representative of the staff employees from the following groups, defined by college or University organization (ORG).
The HSC Staff Senate shall include members from the groups below, with representation equal to the greater of two senators or one senator per 100 staff employees.
Number of Senators
College of Allied Health
College of Dentistry
College of Medicine
College of Nursing
College of Pharmacy
College of Public Health
Administration and Finance
Special group consisting of:
- Admissions & Records
- Graduate College
- Office of Research Administration
- Student Affairs
The HSC Staff Senate Policy Review Committee shall review group composition biennially, or as necessary, to maintain equitable representation and ensure the continuity of group representation and HSC Staff Senate membership. The Committee shall examine biennially, or as necessary, the staggered terms of office to guarantee that not more than one-half (1/2) of the terms may expire each year [plus or minus one (1) in case of odd numbers].
A. Election Process
Elections of Senators will be held annually by constituent groups during the month of April with new members assuming office July 1.
The Staff Senate Office shall notify the senior University official within the groups of the number of senators required for the upcoming term.
The election process for each group will be left to the discretion of the senior University official within that group. Upon completion of each group’s election, the Senators will be appointed to the Staff Senate by said official.
Candidates for office may campaign, as allowable by their group’s senior University official, and within the following guidelines: Campaigning shall be outside of work hours;
campaign fliers may be distributed although fliers may not be posted in hallways or in elevators; with supervisory approval, fliers may be posted in departmental offices; and campaign buttons, campus e-mail, incentive gifts, and use of University resources shall not be allowed.
Elections shall be completed and appointments returned to the Staff Senate Office via e-mail or hard-copy no later than May 1.
B. Contesting Election Results
Results of an election may be contested by submitting a written complaint to the Staff Senate Executive Committee within five (5) working days of the posting of the final results.
The Executive Committee will review the complaint and determine if a recount or further action is necessary.
C. Terms of Office
Senators shall be elected for a two (2) year term serving no more than two (2) consecutive full terms as an elected Senator.
D. New Senator
An Orientation for new Senators shall be held at the start of each fiscal year. The Chair of the Staff Senate will conduct the meeting, assisted by the Staff Senate officers. A presentation shall be made by the Staff Senate Chair, and packets will be distributed containing the Staff Senate Operating Procedures, the Staff Senate Constitution, and other material as deemed necessary by the Staff Senate Chair.
E. Vacancies – Senators
A position on the HSC Staff Senate shall become vacant upon a member changing staff employee groups, terminating employment with the HSC, resigning, or being dismissed from the HSC Staff Senate.
A vacant Senator position shall be filled by appointment from the group’s senior University official, upon notification by the Committee on Committees.
The responsibility of each Senator is to aid in the fulfillment of the purposes of the HSC Staff Senate as delineated in Article III of the Constitution.
It shall be the duty of each Senator to attend all meetings, both regular and special.
It shall be the duty of all Senators to report the actions of the HSC Staff Senate to their respective staff employees on a regular basis.
The Senator shall serve on HSC Staff Senate committees when duly appointed.
When it is necessary for Senators to be absent, it will be their duty to notify the HSC Staff Senate Administrative Coordinator.
It shall be the responsibility of every Senator to post notices that are transmitted campus-wide via e-mail for those individuals without e-mail access.
B. Ex-Officio Members and Provost's Designees
The responsibility of each Ex-Officio Member and Provost’s Designee Member is to serve in an advisory capacity to HSC Staff Senate and the HSC Staff Senate Executive Committee to aid in the fulfillment of the purposes of the HSC Staff Senate as delineated in Article III of the Constitution.
It shall be the duty of each Ex-Officio Member and Provost’s Designee Member to attend all regular and special meetings. Ex-Officio Members may send a designated alternate.
The Ex-Officio Members and Provost’s Designee Members shall serve on HSC Staff Senate committees when duly appointed.
Ex-Officio Members and Provost’s Designee Members shall have full rights of membership, except voting privileges, at all HSC Staff Senate meetings.
The officers of the HSC Staff Senate shall be: Chair, Chair-Elect, Secretary, Treasurer and most recent Past Chair available (hereafter referred to as Past Chair).
The Committee on Committees shall present to the HSC Staff Senate at the April meeting, for action at the May meeting, a slate of nominees from the current Senators. Nominations from the floor shall be called for and voting shall be by secret ballot. The candidate receiving the largest number of votes shall be declared the winner in each category.
The newly appointed officers will attend the final Executive Committee meeting on the fiscal year prior to them taking office.)
In the event there are no volunteers identified to fill an officer position, the Chair shall send an e-mail to all Staff Senate Senators. If no volunteers from the Staff Senate are identified, the Chair may go outside the Staff Senate to appoint an officer from the HSC Staff at large. In this event, the appointed officer shall automatically become a Staff Senate member with full rights of membership, including voting privileges.
B. Terms and Succession
Officers shall be elected for one (1) year terms from members of the HSC Staff Senate and by members of the HSC Staff Senate at the May meeting of each year. If the elected officer is a Senator, he/she shall vacate that position upon taking office and the group’s senior University official shall appoint a replacement to complete their term. The Secretary and Treasurer may serve two (2) consecutive full terms in office.
The Past Chair will serve in an ex-officio capacity for one (1) year.
The Chair-Elect will become Chair July 1 of the year following the year of his/her election to Chair-Elect.
A vacancy in the office of Chair-Elect, Secretary, or Treasurer shall be filled by appointment by the Chair upon recommendation of the Committee on Committees and approval of the HSC Staff Senate. If the office of the Chair is vacated, the Chair-Elect will assume that position.
C. Duties of Officers
The duties of the officers shall be prescribed by the Constitution, these Operating Procedures, and the parliamentary authority adopted by the HSC Staff Senate.
1. Chair Shall:
Be the representative of the HSC Staff Senate to the University Administration;
be a non-voting member of the HSC Staff Senate except in the case of a tie vote, in which event the Chair may vote;
conduct all meetings of the HSC Staff Senate and of the Executive Committee;
perform such other duties as necessary to fulfill the purposes of the HSC Staff Senate;
shall review all minutes, correspondence and reports of HSC Staff Senate committees and may serve as an ex-officio member without vote on all HSC Staff Senate committees;
be responsible for notifying the Staff Senate Office of the committees that need to report to the Staff Senate meetings for inclusion on the Agenda; and the Chair will require the Committee Chairs to make a written and oral report at the Staff Senate meetings.
2. Chair-Elect Shall:
Assist the Chair and in the absence of the Chair conduct meetings of the HSC Staff Senate and have the powers and prerogatives of the Chair;
Chair the Committee on Committees; and
Perform such duties as necessary to fulfill the purposes of the HSC Staff Senate.
3. Secretary Shall:
Record and transcribe accurate minutes of all Staff Senate meetings, a draft of which shall be posted to the Staff Senate web site within five (5) working days of the meeting; and
Review attendance records and determine appropriate action pursuant to Section IX of the Operating Procedures.
4. Treasurer Shall:
Work with the Administrative Coordinator to track, document, and reconcile fund-raising inventory; assign two individuals to handle cash at Staff Senate fundraisers; document cash received with the cash handlers, sign and date a receipt for such, and deliver funds and receipt to the Staff Senate office at the conclusion of the event; re-count the funds with a Staff Senate office designee and sign and date receipt for such; and report verbally and in writing at HSC Staff Senate meetings.
5. Past Chair Shall:
Serve as a non-voting member of the HSC Staff Senate and in the absence of the Chair and Chair-Elect, shall preside at the HSC Staff Senate meetings; serve as Parliamentarian and be knowledgeable of the Constitution and Operating Procedures; and maintain a copy of said documents at each Staff Senate meeting for reference. Certify a quorum.
6. Chair Pro-Tempore Shall:
In the absence of the Chair, Chair-Elect, and Past Chair from any official meeting of the HSC Staff Senate, members of the HSC Staff Senate present shall select a Chair who shall preside at that meeting only.
IV. EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
Shall consist of the Chair, Chair-Elect, Secretary, Treasurer, and Past Chair, who shall be voting members. The Ex-Officio Members, Provost’s Designee Members, and the Administrative Coordinator shall have full rights of membership, except voting privileges.
B. Provost’s Designees
There shall be three Provost’s Designee Members on the Executive Committee. Upon expiration of a four-year term, a new appointment will be made by the Provost who shall solicit nominations for the Provost’s Designee from the HSC Deans and the Vice President for Administration and Finance. The Provost shall then select the appointee from nominations received. The Designees will be notified in writing by the Provost of his or her appointment and the term of that appointment. Provost’s Designees shall not serve two consecutive terms.
C. Duties and Powers
Transact business of the HSC Staff Senate between meetings and report any actions taken to the HSC Staff Senate at the next meeting. Transact business delegated to it by the HSC Staff Senate, HSC Provost, etc.
Forward to the HSC Provost and the President of the University the recommendations and advice of the HSC Staff Senate on policy matters relating to staff employees.
Review committee reports and recommend actions on such reports to the HSC Staff Senate.
Review requests submitted by the Treasurer for non-revenue generating expenditures. Approve, deny, or modify requests for non-recurring expenditures up to $1,000, and all recurring expenditures. Present requests for non-recurring expenditures in excess of $1,000 (such as but not limited to staff appreciation activities) to the Staff Senate with recommendation for action.
The Executive Committee shall meet as often as necessary, to carry out its duties, at the call of the Chair or as determined by the Executive Committee.
The Executive Committee shall meet at the request of any one (1) voting member thereof.
A quorum of the Executive Committee shall consist of three (3) of its voting members.
The Staff Senate Secretary shall record and transcribe accurate minutes of all Executive Committee meetings.
Membership and participation in HSC Staff Senate or Staff Senate committees shall always be subject to supervisory approval.
V. STAFF SENATE MEETINGS
The Staff Senate shall hold at least ten (10) monthly meetings per year. As a rule, regular meetings of the HSC Staff Senate will be held at 10 a.m. on the first working Thursday of each month, August through December and February through June.
Special meetings may be called by the Chair or at the written request of one-third (1/3) of the Senators.
All meetings shall be open to the public. Only Senators, Ex-Officio Members, Provost’s Designee Members, and the Administrative Coordinator may participate in discussions except by vote of the HSC Staff Senate members present or permission of the Chair.
Meetings shall be conducted in accordance with the Constitution, these Operating Procedures, and Robert’s Rules of Order.
B. Quorum and Voting
A simple majority of the total Senators of the HSC Staff Senate shall constitute a quorum authorized to transact business at any regular or special meeting of the HSC Staff Senate.
Voting by the HSC Staff Senate Senators shall be by voice, show of hands, e-mail, or written ballot as designated by the Chair.
All decisions shall be made by a majority vote of the Senators present unless otherwise specified in the Constitution, the Operating Procedures, or the Parliamentary Authority.
C. Communication between The University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center Staff Senate and the Staff Senates for the Norman and Tulsa Campuses.
For purposes of communications within the University, the officers of the HSC Staff Senate and the Staff Senates for the Norman and Tulsa Campuses shall meet periodically, but not less than annually, to discuss matters of mutual concern. (Hosting of these meetings shall alternate.)
VI. HSC STAFF SENATE COMMITTEES
A. General Considerations
The HSC Staff Senate shall have the power to approve standing and special committees, etc., as deemed necessary to accomplish the purposes of the HSC Staff Senate. The HSC Staff Senate shall have the power to reconstitute and dissolve any standing or special committees.
Any staff employee with 50% FTE or more employment may serve on HSC Staff Senate committees.
Members of the HSC Staff Senate committees shall be appointed by the Chair of the HSC Staff Senate upon recommendation of the Committee on Committees and approval of the HSC Staff Senate. Subsequent vacancies will be filled in the same manner and shall be for the duration of the remaining term.
Each committee shall have a clearly defined function from the HSC Staff Senate Chair and make frequent reports and recommendations to the HSC Staff Senate, which may include minority (dissenting) reports.
With the exception of the Chair, being an officer of HSC Staff Senate does not preclude serving on any committee either as members or as committee officers.
The Chair of any standing or special committee shall serve not more than two (2) consecutive one (1) year terms in that office.
The Chair shall convene meetings and prepare and provide a copy of the agenda/needed materials to committee members. Meetings will be held as needed to meet the requirements of the committee. In addition, the Chair will assure minutes are recorded as well as distributed to all necessary parties to include the HSC Staff Senate office following meetings. The Chair or designee
shall report committee matters to the Staff Senate at monthly meetings and to seek confirmation on issues requiring Senate approval.
The Chair will encourage all members to participate in electronic and/or verbal discussions. In the event a committee member is inactive, the Chair is given discretion to discuss membership options that best fit the individual member and the committee.
Prior to expenditure commitment, HSC Staff Senate committees shall submit requests for non-revenue generating expenditures to the Treasurer of the Staff Senate for review and approval by the Executive Committee.
All special and standing committee meetings shall be subject to call of their respective Chairs.
Any member resigning from the committee must do so in writing to the Chair of the committee, who shall then notify the Chair of the Committee on Committees and ask that a new member be appointed to fulfill the term of the resigning member.
A quorum of a committee shall consist of a majority of its members.
B. Standing Committees
1. Budget and Planning Committee
Shall consist of the Staff Senate Chair, Chair-elect, Past Chair, Treasurer, Administrative Coordinator, and the Chairs of each Staff Senate committee that expends funds, to include, but not limited to, Employee Recognition, Staff Week, and Special Projects. Staff Senate Treasurer shall serve as chair. The committee shall convene at least twice annually with additional meetings as necessary.
The function of the Budget and Planning Committee shall be:
To create a budget of estimated expenditures not to exceed the fiscal balance at the beginning of each fiscal year. Each committee chair shall be responsible for proposing a plan of expenditures. The committee will create a framework budget to present to the Executive Committee for approval.
The budget shall be presented by the Treasurer or Staff Senate Chair at the next scheduled Staff Senate meeting for information or a Staff Senate approval as outlined in IV, C of herein Operating Procedures.
2. Committee on Committees
Shall consist of four (4) members, who must be Senators when elected, and three (3) additional members at-large, serving two (2) year staggered terms. Replacement members shall be elected by the HSC Staff Senate at the May meeting. There shall be no more than one (1) member from any HSC Staff Senate group. New member appointments begin July 1. The Chair-Elect shall chair this committee.
The function of the Committee on Committees shall be:
To convene during the year when necessary to nominate staff employees to serve on search committees, task forces, ad hoc committees, or any other committees.
To convene during the year when necessary to review recommendations to form standing committees.
To monitor Staff Senate membership and request new appointments of each group’s senior University official, as needed.
To present a slate of nominees for Chair Elect, Secretary, and Treasurer from the current Senate roster at the April meeting for action at the May meeting.
To provide the Staff Senate with a list of newly elected Senators.
To provide the Staff Senate with a list of standing and special committee vacancies.
The Committee on Committees shall submit all recommendations to the HSC Staff Senate for approval.
3. Employee of the Month Selection Committee
Shall consist of seven (7) members which comprise of the following: Three (3) individuals from Administration of The University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, one (1) of whom is to be selected by the Provost and four (4) staff employees elected by the HSC Staff Senate. There shall not be more than one (1) member from each HSC Staff Senate group.
Length of service on the Employee of the Month Selection Committee will be in staggered two (2) year terms, beginning January 1st, with not more than one-half (1/2) of the terms expiring each year, plus or minus one (1). Members should serve no more than two (2) consecutive full terms as a member of the committee.
The Employee of the Month Selection Committee shall elect annually a Chair of the committee who retains voting privileges on committee deliberations.
The function of the Employee of the Month Selection Committee shall be:
To determine the ranking and selection procedures for determining the awards using the criteria established by the HSC Staff Senate.
To select a staff employee from nominees to receive the “Employee of the Month” award each month.
4. Employee Recognition Committee
Shall consist of at least eight (8) members who serve two (2) year staggered terms beginning July 1. The Chair of the committee shall be appointed by the Chair of the HSC Staff Senate. The Past Chair of the committee may serve in an advisory capacity.
The function of the Employee Recognition Committee shall be:
To coordinate staff employee recognition activities including, but not limited to, the following awards: Length-of-service, retirement, Employee of the Year, Regents Award for Superior Staff, HSC Staff Senate Appreciation Awards, and other staff recognition as determined by HSC Staff Senate.
5. Policy Review Committee
Shall consist of five (5) members who serve two (2) year staggered terms, beginning July 1. The Chair will be appointed by the Chair of the Staff Senate with the term beginning July 1.
The functions of the Policy Review Committee shall be:
To review (when presented) all suggested amendments to the Constitution and Operating Procedures and make recommendations concerning these changes to the HSC Staff Senate.
To review annually the Constitution and Operating Procedures and recommend changes, as appropriate, to the HSC Staff Senate.
To review and make recommendations concerning policies, procedures, directives, etc., as directed by the HSC Staff Senate.
To biennially review the group distribution and recommend realignment of representation, if necessary.
6. Special Projects Committee
Shall consist of at least eight (8) members who serve two (2) year staggered terms, beginning July 1. The Chair of the committee shall be appointed by the Chair of the HSC Staff Senate. The past Chair of the committee may serve in an advisory capacity.
The functions of the Special Projects Committee shall include, but are not limited to, planning, organizing and assuming fiscal responsibilities for fund raising activities, social functions and special events for the HSC campus, as directed by HSC Staff Senate.
Employees of affiliated entities within the Oklahoma Health Center may serve on this committee on a one-year special appointment by the Chair of the Staff Senate.
7. Staff Week Committee
Shall consist of at least eight (8) members who serve two (2) year staggered terms beginning July 1. The Chair of the committee shall be appointed annually by the Chair of HSC Staff Senate. The Past Chair of the committee may serve in an advisory capacity.
The function of the Staff Week Committee shall be to coordinate staff week activities, including but not limited to, planning, organizing, budgeting, and conducting the events.
8. Community Outreach Committee
Shall consist of at least eight (8) members who serve two (2) year staggered terms, beginning July 1. The Chair of the committee shall be appointed annually by the Chair of the HSC Staff Senate. The Past Chair of the committee may serve in an advisory capacity. Employees of affiliated entities within the Oklahoma Health Sciences Center may serve on this committee on a one year special appointment by the Chair of the Staff Senate.
The function of the Community Outreach Committee shall be:
To assist OUSC staff in their growth as individuals, leaders and members of the community.
To provide opportunities to serve the broader community with time and effort.
9. Special Committees
Special committees of the HSC Staff Senate may be established at the discretion of the HSC Staff Senate or the Chair.
A special committee shall be dissolved upon completion of its charge, presentation of a final written report, and acceptance of such report by the HSC Staff Senate.
If it is determined that a special committee should become a standing committee, a recommendation is to be submitted to the Committee on Committees for action.
Employees of affiliated entities within the Oklahoma Health Center may serve on this committee on a one-year special appointment by the Chair of the Staff Senate.
VII. HSC AND UNIVERSITY COMMITTEES
A. General Considerations
In addition to the HSC Staff Senate committees, the Health Sciences Center shall have Staff representation on HSC and University-wide committees. These committees include, but are not limited to the committees listed in Sections B and C below.
It is the responsibility of the Staff Senate Office to keep a current list of Staff Senate, HSC, and University-wide committees, committee members, and their terms of service.
B. HSC Committees
1. Staff Dispute Resolution and Shared Leave Committees
Shall operate in accordance with the OUHSC Staff Handbook.
2. Parking Appeal Committee
Shall operate in accordance with Chapter 5 of the OU Parking Rules & Regulations.
C. University Committees: Athletics, Discrimination and Harassment, Employee Benefits, Patent Advisory, and University Copyright
Members of these committees shall be appointed by the Chair of the HSC Staff Senate upon recommendation of the Committee on Committees and approval of the Staff Senate. Subsequent vacancies shall be filled in the same manner and will be for the duration of the unexpired term.
Amendments to the Operating Procedures of the HSC Staff Senate shall be made only at a regular or special meeting by two-third (2/3) affirmative vote of the Senators of the HSC Staff Senate present and voting, provided a quorum is present.
A proposed amendment shall be submitted in writing to the Administrative Coordinator who will direct the proposal to the Policy Review Committee for review and presentation to the HSC Staff Senate. Proposals shall be distributed to the members of HSC Staff Senate at least ten (10) calendar days before the meeting at which it will be considered.
A formal vote may not be taken until the first regular or special meeting at which a quorum is present after the meeting when the amendment(s) was first considered.
IX. RULES OF CONDUCT AND DISCIPLINARY ACTIONS
As representatives of the HSC Staff Senate, it is expected that HSC Staff Senate Officers, Senators, and appointees will, at all times, conduct themselves in a professional, cooperative, and collegial manner. Staff Senate membership expressly implies a representation of the Senate and HSC staff as a whole, and members will present themselves on behalf of the Staff Senate as such. A member will at all times strive to maintain the integrity of the Staff Senate by exhibiting behavior conducive to the Senate’s mission.
Any HSC Staff Senate Officer, Senator, or appointee found guilty of conduct tending to injure the good name of the HSC Staff Senate, disturb its well-being, or hamper it in its work may be disciplined through reprimand or expulsion. The discipline will be decided by a majority vote of the Executive Committee.
Additionally, three (3) absences from scheduled HSC Staff Senate meetings may be cause for dismissal. Dismissal shall not occur until reviewed by the Executive Committee and approved by the HSC Staff Senate.
After three (3) absences from scheduled HSC Staff Senate meetings during any operating year, the Senator and their group’s senior University official shall be notified in writing that unless he/she replies in writing within ten days either assuring the HSC Staff Senate that interest and participation will continue or offering to resign, the Executive Committee will be obliged to recommend to the HSC Staff Senate that this Senator be replaced. In any event, replacement may automatically be recommended with the occurrence of the fourth (4) absence.
X. SUSPENSION OF RULES
Any provision of the Operating Procedures, with the exception of the provisions concerning amendments, may be suspended for the duration of any one (1) meeting by a two-third (2/3) affirmative vote of the Senators of the HSC Staff Senate present and voting, provided a quorum is present.
XI. RULES OF ORDER
The rules of parliamentary procedure, as set forth in Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly Revised, shall govern all meetings of the HSC Staff Senate and of its standing and special committees.