The mission of the TSTC Staff Senate, herein after referred to as the Staff Senate, shall be to promote and enhance the status of the TSTC staff to ensure the effective contribution of staff expertise toward college goals, and to act as liaison between the College President and non-faculty employees as defined by Equal Employment Opportunity Categories. The Staff Senate may make recommendations on general policies but does not act on individual issues. The Staff Senate shall represent the collective body of the staff and shall report directly to the TSTC President.
ARTICLE I - Offices
The principal office of the TSTC Harlingen Staff Senate shall be located at 1902 North Loop 499, Harlingen, Texas 78550-3697.
ARTICLE II - Members
Members must be individuals who are full-time, part-time, or contracted employees with six consecutive months of service at TSTC Harlingen. All such employees, with the exception of the College President, President=s Council, Deans, Associate Deans, Faculty, Student Workers, and Workstudies, shall be members of the Staff Senate.
2. CATEGORIES OF MEMBERSHIP
Memberships shall be of four categories:
- Clerical/Secretarial, includes all persons whose assignments typically are associated with clerical activities or are specifically of a secretarial nature.
- Professional, includes all persons whose assignments would require either college graduation or experience of such kind and amount as to provide a comparable background. Included would be all staff members with assignments requiring specialized professional training whose activities could not be classified as executive or faculty, and who should not be included with any of the three nonprofessional groups. This category may also includes eligible persons whose employment classification is Exec/Admin/Mgr.
- Service/Maintenance/Skilled, which includes persons whose assignments require limited degrees of previously acquired skills and knowledge or whose assignments typically require special skills and a thorough and comprehensive knowledge of the processors involved in the work. Workers perform duties which result in or contribute to the comfort, convenience, and hygiene of personnel and the student body, or which contribute to the upkeep and care of building, facilities, or grounds of the institutional property. This category includes, but is not limited to, employees such as custodial personnel, ground maintenance, construction workers, equipment maintenance, and security personnel.
- Technical Paraprofessional, which includes all persons whose assignments require specialized knowledge or skills which may be acquired through experience or academic work offered in many two-year technical colleges, junior colleges, or through equivalent on-the-job training.
3. PRIVILEGES OF MEMBERSHIP
Each member shall be entitled to one vote on each matter submitted to the membership for a vote in any membership meeting. Each member shall be entitled to attend any open meeting of the Board of Directors or any committee appointed by the Board of Directors. Each member is entitled to submit information, suggestions, requests, or motions at any membership meeting.
4. TERMINATION OF MEMBERSHIP
Memberships shall be terminated by termination of employment at TSTC Harlingen.
ARTICLE III - Meeting of Members
1. ANNUAL MEETING
The annual meeting of the members shall be held each August, for the purpose of electing directors and for the transaction of such other business as may come before the meeting.
2. SPECIAL MEETINGS
Special meetings of the members, for any purpose or purposes, may be called by the President or by the Directors, and shall be called by the President at the request of not less than a quorum of all the members of the Staff Senate entitled to vote at the meeting.
3. REGULAR MEETINGS
Regular meetings shall be held at the day and time designated by the Board of Directors. Regular meetings shall be held monthly or as deemed necessary. The first regular meeting shall be in October.
4. PLACE OF MEETING
The Directors may designate any place within the TSTC Harlingen campus as the place of meeting for any annual meeting, regular meeting or any special meeting called by the Directors.
5. NOTICE OF MEETING
Written or printed notice stating the place, day and hour of regular or annual meetings and, in case of a special meeting, the purpose or purposes for which the meeting is called, shall be delivered not less than ten nor more than thirty days before the date of the meeting, either personally or by written mail, by or at the direction of the President, or the Secretary, or the officer or persons calling the meeting, to each member of record entitled to vote at such meeting. If mailed, such notice shall be deemed to be delivered when deposited in the TSTC Harlingen campus mail, addressed to the member as it appears on the membership books of the Staff Senate.
6. MEMBERSHIP LISTS
The officer or agent having charge of the membership list of the Staff Senate shall make, at least five (5) days before each meeting of members, a complete list of members entitled to vote at such meeting, or any adjournment thereof arranged in alphabetical order, with the campus address and membership category of each member, which list, for a period of five (5) days prior to such meeting, shall be kept on file and shall be subject to inspection by any member at any time during usual business hours. Such list shall also be produced and kept open at the time and the place of the meeting and shall be subject to the inspection of any member during the whole time of the meeting.
At any meeting of members, 15% of the members of the Staff Senate entitled to vote, represented in person or by proxy, shall constitute a quorum. If less than said number of the members are represented at a meeting, a majority of the members so represented may adjourn the meeting from time to time without further notice. The members present at a duly organized meeting may continue to transact business until adjournment, notwithstanding the withdrawal of enough members to leave less than a quorum.
At all meetings of members, a member may vote by proxy executed in writing by the member. Such proxy shall be filed with the Secretary of the Staff Senate before or at the time of the meeting.
Each member entitled to vote in accordance with the terms and provisions of these bylaws shall be entitled to one vote, in person or by proxy. Upon the demand of any member, the vote for directors, and upon any question before the meeting shall be by written secret ballot. All elections for directors shall be decided by plurality vote; all other questions shall be decided by majority vote.
10. ORDER OF BUSINESS
The order of business at all meetings of the members shall be as follows:
A. Roll Call of Board of Directors
B. Proof of notice of meeting
C. Reading of minutes of preceding meeting
D. Reports of Officers
E. Reports of Committees
F. Unfinished Business
G. New Business
11. INFORMAL ACTION BY MEMBERS
Unless otherwise provided, any action required to be taken at a meeting of the members, or any other action which may be taken at a meeting of the members, may be taken without a meeting if a consent in writing, setting forth the action so taken, shall be signed by all of the members entitled to vote with respect to the subject matter thereof.
ARTICLE IV - Board of Directors
1. GENERAL POWERS
The business and affairs of the Staff Senate shall be managed by its Board of Directors. The Directors shall in all cases act as a board, and they may adopt such rules and regulations for the conduct of their meetings and the management of the Staff Senate, as they may deem proper, not inconsistent with the laws of the State of Texas or the policies of the TSTC System Board of Regents.
2. NUMBER, TENURE AND QUALIFICATIONS
The number of directors of the Staff Senate shall be nine. Two directors shall be elected from each of the four membership categories, and one director shall be elected from the membership at-large. The tenure of directors shall be staggered during the first year such that one vacancy for director in each membership category occurs each year. Each of the Directors after the first year shall hold office for a period of two years, except the director elected at-large, who will hold office for a period of one year.
3. ELECTION AND TERM OF OFFICE
The Directors of the Staff Senate shall be elected at the annual meeting in August each year and serve for the following two fiscal years, except the director at-large, who will serve for the following one fiscal year. Nominations shall be accepted by the Election Committee at the regular membership meeting prior to July 1st and reported to the Secretary by July 1st. The Secretary will prepare a ballot containing the names of the nominees for each member. Each member shall complete the ballot and return it to the Secretary in person, by mail, or by proxy at the annual meeting in August. The ballots shall be counted at the annual meeting. The nominee receiving the greatest number of votes shall be deemed as elected. Each director shall hold office until a successor shall have been duly elected and shall have qualified or until such director shall resign or shall have been removed in the manner hereinafter provided.
4. REGULAR MEETINGS
A regular meeting of the Directors shall be held without other notice than this bylaw immediately after, and at the same place as, the annual meeting of members. The Directors may provide, by resolution, the time and place for the holding of additional regular meetings without other notice than such resolution.
5. SPECIAL MEETINGS
Special meetings of the Directors may be called by or at the request of the President or any three directors. The person or persons authorized to call special meetings of the Directors may fix the place for holding any special meeting of the Directors called by them.
Notice of any special meeting of the Directors shall be given at least five (5) days previously thereto by written notice delivered personally or mailed in the campus mail to each director. If mailed, such notice shall be deemed to be delivered when deposited in the TSTC campus mail so addressed.
At any meeting of the Directors, 50% plus one members shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business, but if less than said number is present at a meeting, a majority of the Directors present may adjourn the meeting without further notice.
8. MANNER OF ACTION
The act of the majority of the Directors present at a meeting at which a quorum is present shall be the act of the Board of Directors.
9. NEWLY CREATED DIRECTORSHIPS AND VACANCIES
Newly created directorships resulting from an increase in the number of membership categories and vacancies occurring in the Board for any reason except the removal of directors without cause may be filled by a vote of a majority of the Directors then in office, although less than exists. Vacancies occurring by reason of the removal of directors without cause shall be filled by vote of the members of the membership category of the director removed. A Director elected to fill a vacancy caused by resignation, death or removal shall be elected to hold office for the unexpired term of the predecessor.
10. REMOVAL OF DIRECTORS
Any or all of the Directors may be removed for cause by a majority vote of the members in the director's membership category or by action of the Board. Directors may be removed with cause only by a two-thirds majority vote of the members in their membership category. Whenever a member terminates membership, directorship shall also cease.
A director may resign at any time by giving written notice to the Board, the President or the Secretary of the Staff Senate. Unless otherwise specified in the notice, the resignation shall take effect upon receipt thereof by the board or such officer, and the acceptance of the resignation shall not be necessary to make it effective.
No compensation shall be paid to directors, as such, for their services.
13. PRESUMPTION OF ASSENT
A director of the Staff Senate who is present at a meeting of the Directors at which action on any Staff Senate matter is taken shall be presumed to have assented to the action taken unless a dissent for this director shall be entered in the minutes of the meeting or unless a written dissent to such action is filed with the person acting as the Secretary of the meeting before adjournment thereof or such dissent is forwarded by registered mail to the Secretary of the Staff Senate immediately after the adjournment of the meeting. Such right to dissent shall not apply to a director who voted in favor of such action.
14. EXECUTIVE AND OTHER COMMITTEES
The Board, by resolution, may designate from among its membership an executive committee, and it may designate committees from the general membership, with each such committee consisting of as many members as deemed necessary for the purpose of the committee. Each such committee appointed from the general membership shall have representation from each of the Membership Categories. Each such committee shall serve at the pleasure of the Board.
ARTICLE V - Officers
The officers of the Staff Senate shall be a president, a vice-president, a secretary, a treasurer, and a parliamentarian or any combination thereof not inconsistent with these bylaws and the policies of the TSTC System Board of Regents. Each of these officers shall be elected by the Directors. Such other officers and assistant officers as deemed necessary may be elected or appointed by the Directors.
2. ELECTION AND TERM OF OFFICE
The officers of the Staff Senate shall be elected at the regular meeting of directors in August each year and serve for the following fiscal year. Nominations shall be taken from the Directors. The nominee receiving a majority of the votes shall be deemed as elected to the respective office. In the event that a nominee does not receive a majority of votes, a run-off election shall be held to determine the election. Each officer shall hold office until a successor shall have been duly elected and shall have qualified or until such officer shall resign or shall have been removed in the manner hereinafter provided.
Any officer or agent elected or appointed by the Directors may be removed by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the Directors whenever in their judgment the best interests of the Staff Senate would be served thereby.
A vacancy in any office because of death, resignation, removal, disqualification or otherwise, may be filled by the Directors for the unexpired portion of the term.
The President shall be the principal executive officer of the Staff Senate and, subject to the control of the Directors, shall in general supervise and control all of the business and affairs of the Staff Senate. The President shall preside at all meetings of the members and of the Directors. The President may sign, with the Secretary, any instruments which the Directors have authorized to be executed, except in cases where the signing and execution thereof shall be expressly delegated by the Directors or by these bylaws to some other officer or agent of the Staff Senate. The President in general shall perform all duties incident to the office of president and shall attend meetings of the College President's Council. The President shall perform such other duties as may be prescribed by the Directors.
In the absence of the President or in the President's inability or refusal to act, the Vice-President shall have all the power of and be subject to all the restrictions upon the President. The Vice-President shall perform such other duties as may be assigned by the President or by the Directors.
The Secretary shall keep the minutes of the members' and of the Directors' meetings in one or more books provided for that purpose and see that all notices are duly given in accordance with the provisions of these bylaws or as required. The Secretary shall be custodian of the Staff Senate records and keep a register of the campus address of each member, which shall be furnished to the Secretary by such member. The Secretary shall have general charge of the membership books of the Staff Senate and in general perform all duties incident to the office of secretary and such other duties as may be assigned by the President or by the Directors.
If required by the Directors, the treasurer shall give a bond for the faithful discharge of duties in such sum and with such surety or sureties as the Directors shall determine. The treasurer shall have charge and custody of and be responsible for all funds and securities of the Staff Senate. The treasurer shall receive and give receipts for moneys due and payable to the Staff Senate from any source whatsoever, and deposit all such moneys in the name of the Staff Senate in accordance with these bylaws. The treasurer shall in general perform all of the duties incident to the office of treasurer and such other duties as may be assigned by the President or by the Directors.
As required by the Directors, the parliamentarian shall monitor the meetings of members and directors and ensure that all proceedings conform to Robert's Rules of Order. The parliamentarian shall serve as the Chair of the Election Committee and perform such other duties as may be assigned by the President or by the Directors.
10. PAST PRESIDENT
The immediate Past President shall serve the Board of Directors in an advisory capacity as a nonvoting member of the Board. This position shall not be filled if the immediate Past President is a current member of the Board of Directors.
The officers of the Staff Senate shall receive no compensation for their services.
ARTICLE VI - Contracts, Loans, Checks and Deposits
The Directors may authorize any officer or officers, agent or agents, to enter into any contract or execute and deliver any instrument in the name of and on behalf of the Staff Senate, and such authority may be general or confined to specific instances and shall be consistent with policies, procedures, rules and regulations established by the TSTC System Board of Regents.
No loans shall be contracted on behalf of the Staff Senate and no evidences of indebtedness shall be issued in its name unless authorized by a resolution of the Directors and approved by a two-thirds majority of memberships and shall be consistent with policies, procedures, rules and regulations established by the TSTC System Board of Regents. Such authority may be general or confined to specific instances and shall be consistent with TSTC Harlingen practices and procedures.
3. CHECKS, DRAFTS, ETC.
All checks, drafts or other orders for the payment of money, notes, or other evidences of indebtedness issued in the name of the Staff Senate, shall be requested from TSTC Business Office in accordance with policies, procedures, rules and regulations established by the TSTC System Board of Regents.
All funds of the Staff Senate not otherwise employed shall be deposited to a TSTC designated account consistent with TSTC Harlingen practices and procedures and shall be consistent with policies, procedures, rules and regulations established by the TSTC System Board of Regents.
ARTICLE VII - Fiscal Year
The fiscal year of the Staff Senate shall begin on the first day of September in each year and shall end August 31st of each year.
ARTICLE VIII - Amendments
These bylaws may be altered, amended or repealed and new bylaws may be adopted by a vote of the members representing a two-thirds majority of all members present at any membership meeting or any special members' meeting when the proposed amendment has been set out in the notice of such special meeting.
ARTICLE IX - Disclaimer
These bylaws do not constitute an employment contract or create a property or liberty interest for the Staff Senate or any individual member, director, officer, or employee thereof.
ARTICLE X - Texas Law to Govern
These bylaws shall be governed by and construed and interpreted under the laws of the State of Texas.