A60: Faculty Senate Bylaws
Approved by: Faculty Senate
Effective: April 28, 2020
Responsible Faculty Committee: Operations Committee
Office Responsible for Administration: Office of the University Secretary
The authority and duties of the University of New Mexico (UNM) Faculty Senate derive from the Faculty Constitution A51, Section 6.
I. Faculty Senate Structure
A. Officers and Operations Committee Members
1. The Faculty Senate shall elect the following officers and representatives annually.
(c) Four (4) members of the Faculty Senate Operations Committee
2. The Operations Committee will also include the immediate Past President of the Faculty Senate, whether or not the Past-President is a member of the Faculty Senate. The Operations Committee will always include seven (7) faculty members, so that if the President and President-Elect are the same person, (i.e., when the President-Elect runs for a second term and is elected, or if the Past President and President are the same person, (i.e., during the second term of a two-year term as President), then five (5) members of the Operations Committee shall be elected.
3. Duties of Officers
(a) The President shall have the following duties:
(1) Serve as chairperson of the Faculty Senate and the Operations Committee.
(2) Represent the Faculty before the Regents, Administration, and other groups by attending requisite functions and committee meetings.
(3) Appoint ad-hoc committees as necessary to conduct Faculty Senate business.
(b) The President-elect shall have the following duties:
(1) Serve on the Operations Committee
(2) Perform the duties of the President in the absence of the President.
(3) Assist the President in representing the faculty before the Administration, the Regents, and other groups.
(4) Oversee Faculty Senate committee appointments.
4. Election of Officers and Operations Committee Members
(a) The election of the President and Operations Committee members shall be conducted annually at a special meeting of the incoming Faculty Senate held at the close of the spring term of the preceding academic year. Alternatively, at the discretion of the President, this election may be conducted electronically.
(b) The election shall be chaired by the outgoing President of the Faculty Senate.
(c) The new officers and Operations Committee members shall take office on July 1 of the year of their election.
(d) Nominations and self-nominations for President, President-Elect, and Operations Committee may be made by incoming senators at a regular Faculty Senate meeting or electronically to the University Secretary's office, which will verify the senator's willingness to serve.
(e) Among the five (5) voting members of the Operations Committee, at least four (4) colleges must be represented.
(f) If the President or President-Elect does not complete their term of office, the Operations Committee will arrange for the Faculty Senate to elect a replacement at the earliest opportunity.
(g) If a member of the Operations Committee does not complete the term of office, the Operations Committee will either find a replacement from the unelected candidates from the most recent Operations Committee election (taking the unelected candidate with the most votes from an eligible college) or, if this is not possible, arrange for a new election of a replacement by the Faculty Senate.
B. Faculty Senate Operations Committee
(a) The President, President-Elect, Past President, and four (4) voting members of the Faculty Senate elected by the Faculty Senate.
(b) The President of the Faculty Senate shall serve as chairperson of the Faculty Senate Operations Committee.
(c) The immediate past president of the Faculty Senate, whether or not the individual is a member of the Faculty Senate, shall be an ex-officio voting member of the Operations Committee.
(a) Perform basic administrative functions to facilitate the work of the Faculty Senate and Faculty Senate councils and committees.
(b) Establish priorities and set agendas for Faculty Senate meetings.
(c) Transmit to the Faculty Senate with recommendations as to adoption of all reports, recommendations, and proposals received from Faculty Senate committees. In performing this function, the Operations Committee shall not change committee recommendations or proposals without the approval of the originating committee. It may refer a recommendation back to the committee for further study or it may present its own recommendations to the Faculty Senate together with those of the originating committee.
(d) Coordinate the activities of all Faculty Senate committees.
(e) Study Faculty Senate procedures and structure and make recommendations for their improvement.
(f) Recommend to the Faculty Senate changes in the committee structure in keeping with Article I, Section 6 (g) of the Faculty Constitution.
(g) Coordinate the work of Faculty Senate councils and committees and the administration by forwarding relevant council and committee reports and recommendations to the appropriate group or individual for additional consideration and comment.
(h) Function as a committee on committees. (Recommend to the Faculty Senate the appointment of committee members and chairpersons.)
(i) Assist the President and President-Elect in representing the faculty before the administration and Regents, on an as-needed basis.
(j) Coordinate work of the Councils, with an individual Operations Committee member assigned to each Council.
C. Faculty Senate Councils
There are six (6) Faculty Senate councils: Academic Council, Athletic Council, Branch Community Colleges Council, Business Council, Health Sciences Council, and Research and Creative Works Council. Councils have authority over matters that cannot easily or fully be handled by a single existing Faculty Senate committee of the respective council. Council recommendations shall be reviewed by the Faculty Senate Operations Committee and may be subject to ratification by the Faculty Senate if required by Faculty Handbook policy and/or the Faculty Constitution. The Committees appointed to each Council are defined in the respective Council Charge Policy which is subject to approval by the Faculty Senate. The Council Charge Policy also delineates how the Council Chair is selected and any ex-officio non-voting members. The Faculty Senate Operations Committee has the authority to appoint interim council chairs (subject to approval by the Faculty Senate) if the council members are unable to elect them by July 1, or if vacancies occur during the term.
In addition to the ex-officio members of the Faculty Senate listed in Section 6(b) of the Faculty Constitution, the council chairs shall be ex-officio, non-voting members of the Faculty Senate. The council chairs will meet regularly with the Operations Committee, but no less than once each semester.
D. Policy Committee
The Policy Committee is responsible for policy-related matters and reports directly to the Operations Committee. The Policy Committee membership and responsibilities are delineated in the Policy Committee Charge Policy which is subject to approval by the Faculty Senate.
E. Ethics Advisory Committee
The Ethics Advisory Committee is responsible for ethics-related matters and reports directly to the Operations Committee regarding membership and Committee responsibilities listed in the Committee’s charge. However, deliberations, recommendations, and decisions resulting from investigations conducted by the Ethics Committee are reported to the appropriate UNM official(s) and/or AF&T in accordance with Faculty Handbook Section B which includes Appendix VIII “Faculty Ethics and Advisory Committee.” The Ethics Committee membership and responsibilities are delineated in the Ethics Committee Charge Policy which is subject to approval by the Faculty Senate.
F. Other Faculty Senate Committees and Representation
Standing Committees of the Faculty Senate. All standing committees are responsible to the Faculty Senate, report to the Faculty Senate Operations Committee, and have their faculty membership appointed by the Faculty Senate.
In its capacity as a committee on committees, the Operations Committee can make recommendations to the Faculty Senate to add a new standing committee, combine existing standing committees, or eliminate an existing committee. Such action requires approval by the Faculty Senate. Committee charge policies will be revised to reflect such changes and must be approved by the Faculty Senate and published in the Faculty Handbook. Standing committee charges are listed in the Related Documents Section of this Policy.
Administrative Committees with faculty representatives appointed by the Faculty Senate. Faculty members on these Committees shall make periodic reports to the Faculty Senate whenever such reports are considered appropriate by them and/or when requested to do so by the Operations Committee.
Student committees with faculty representatives appointed by the Faculty Senate. Faculty members on these Committees shall make periodic reports to the Faculty Senate whenever such reports are considered appropriate by them and/or when requested to do so by the Operations Committee.
II. Faculty Senate Operating Policies
In accordance with the Faculty Constitution, the Faculty Senate serves as the agent of the University Faculty and exercises all authority by way of delegation. Therefore, Faculty Senate action shall become effective after one month unless the UNM President receives a valid petition from UNM faculty within this period. If a valid petition is received, action will be taken in accordance with the Faculty Constitution.
In its capacity as a committee on committees, the Operations Committee shall make recommendations to the Faculty Senate for all committee appointments (including committee chairpersons) that are the responsibility of the Faculty Senate. These appointments shall be voted on by the Faculty Senate.
All members of the University voting faculty are eligible for appointment to standing faculty committees or as faculty representatives on administrative and student committees. Appointments shall be determined by the Faculty Senate upon recommendation of the Operations Committee.
During the Spring Semester of each year, all faculty shall be asked to rank the various committees according to their preference for membership on those committees. The Operations Committee shall recommend appointments to committees based upon the stated preferences of faculty members as feasible.
Senators are encouraged to serve on a Faculty Senate Committee and will be given priority consideration in appointments to committees.
Initial committee appointments will normally be effective on July 1 of the year of the appointment. Replacement appointments will be effective when approved by the Faculty Senate.
When it is desirable, in the judgment of the Operations Committee and the current Committee chair, if there is one, for a committee appointment to begin as soon as possible, the Operations Committee may make such an appointment on a provisional basis, pending approval by the Faculty Senate at its next meeting.
Administrative officers (vice presidents and college deans) shall not serve as Faculty Senate appointed committee members.
Given the importance of ensuring active participation of all Senators and representation of all parts of UNM, if a Senator misses two Faculty Senate meetings in a given semester, the Faculty Senate President shall consult with the Senator concerning attendance and may, after consultation with the Operations Committee, declare the seat vacant.
If a Committee member of any Faculty Senate Committee misses two meetings in a given semester, the Chair of the Committee should consult with that person and may recommend to the Operations Committee that the seat be declared vacant and the person replaced.
III. Committee Membership and Duties
A. The duties and composition of councils and committees will be delineated in Council and Committee Charge policies approved by the Faculty Senate and published in the Faculty Handbook.
B. For specific Committee tasks that would benefit from the inclusion of other faculty, administrators, staff, and students, a Committee may appoint a taskforce. The taskforce is a temporary group appointed for the purpose of accomplishing a definite objective. The taskforce will be chaired by a member of the Committee that appointed the taskforce. To ensure faculty are adequately represented in the taskforce work, at least 50 percent of the taskforce members must be faculty. The Committee will submit a Taskforce Charge and membership list to the Operations Committee for approval.
All UNM faculty, including the Health Sciences Center and Branch Community Colleges.
No specific definitions are required for the Policy Statement.
Who should read this policy
- Department Chairs
- Academic deans and other academic administrators and executives
UNM Regents’ Policy Manual, Policy 1.7 “Advisors to the Board of Regents”
- A51: Faculty Constitution
- A53: Development and Approval of Faculty Policies
- A61: Academic Council
- A61.1: Admissions and Registration Committee
- A61.2: Faculty Senate Curricula Committee (FSCC)
- A61.3: Senate Graduate and Professional Committee (SGPC)
- A61.3.1: Honorary Degree Sub-Committee
- A61.4: Teaching Enhancement Committee
- A61.5: Campus Development Advisory Committee
- A61.10: Governmental Relations Committee
- A62: Athletic Council
- A63: Business Council
- A63.1: Budget Committee
- A63.3 Faculty and Staff Benefits Committee
- A63.5: Information Technology Committee
- A64: Health Sciences Center Council
- A65: Research and Creative Works Council
- A65.1: Library Committee
- A65.2: Research Allocations Committee
- A65.3: Research Policy Committee
- A65.4: University Press Committee
- A66: Policy Committee
- A67: Faculty Senate Ethics & Advisory Committee
Direct any questions about this policy to the Office of the University Secretary.
Each speaker is limited to five (5) minutes each time when speaking to an issue.
The Faculty Senate shall normally meet the fourth Tuesday of every month at 3:00 p.m. Additional meetings may be scheduled by the Operations Committee as needed.
The President of the Faculty Senate shall have the right to vote as a member of the body on each motion before the Faculty Senate.
A quorum shall consist of 40 percent of the Faculty Senate membership.
Faculty Senate meetings shall be conducted in accordance with the Robert's Rules of Order.
In accordance with the Faculty Constitution, all actions of the Faculty Senate shall be reported in writing to the Voting Faculty regularly and within ten (10) working days of such action. Additionally, the approved minutes of the Faculty Senate shall be distributed to the University Faculty within three working days after the meeting at which they are approved.
- August 17, 2022 - Added Branch Community Colleges Council to list of Faculty Senate Councils.
- April 28, 2020 - Amended
- Special Rules of Order Governing the Reorganization of the Faculty Senate were approved by the Faculty Senate. These special rules of order modify the Faculty Senate Bylaws for a period of two years beginning July 1, 2012 and ending June 30, 2014, for the purpose of reorganizing the Faculty Senate structure. The sections dealing with Faculty Senate Councils and Council chairs were added to the bylaws on a two-year, pilot basis. The rules will be extended until June 30, 2015.
- April 27, 2004 - Amended
- October 28, 2003 - Amended
- August 27, 2002 - Amended
- March 27, 2001 - Amended
- April 28, 1998 - Amended
- November 1993 - April 1990 amendment was rescinded
- May 11, 1993 - Amended
- April 1990 - Amended
- May 9, 1989 - Amended
- March 31, 1981 - Approved