Legislative Rulings by the Merced Division Committee on Rules and Elections*
Formal rulings have been made as follows in response to requests for interpretation of Senate legislation where there has been no subsequent legislative or Regental action. For each ruling there is a link to a document that includes the background and legislative rationale for the ruling.
09.07 Voting Privileges
The committee structure envisioned by the School of Natural Sciences, under which each faculty member has voting privileges in a primary group, and rights to participate but not vote in secondary groups, does not violate a faculty member’s voting rights under Academic Senate Bylaw 55 as long as all of the members of the Faculty have a right to vote on the final adoption of the plan.
11.07 Course Approval (Superseded by 01.08.C)
Courses are subject to approval by a Faculty acting as an Academic Senate Bylaw 55 voting unit. The committee structure envisioned by the Undergraduate Council, under which Faculty approval be delegated to a committee, can only be advisory to Schools, as such delegation can only be done within the Schools.
12.07 School Elections
Elections have to be held as described in the UC Merced and School Bylaws, unless it is explicitly stated that elections are not held if the number of persons nominated is not in excess of the number of places to be filled.
01.08.A Graduate Course Approval
The UC Merced Graduate and Research Council is delegated authority to establish rules for graduate education. Thus, the Research and Graduate Council has the authority to establish procedures for the review and approval of graduate emphasis areas and graduate groups. The Graduate and Research Council is also empowered to review proposals for graduate courses and to establish procedures for its internal review of graduate courses.
The UCM Divisional Bylaws expressly delegate all Divisional course approval authority to the Undergraduate Council. While the authority to approve courses rests with the Undergraduate Council, the exercise of that authority can be informed by course approval or rejection by the Graduate and Research Council.
01.08.B Divisional Council Authority and Core 100
Since College One Executive Committee is a Divisional Council Committee, College One Executive Committee can be instructed by the Divisional Council to request substitute courses for Core 100 from the chairs of the School Faculties.
The Faculties of the Schools have sole authority to propose substitute courses for Core 100 and to submit these recommended courses for approval to the College One Executive Committee (or the Divisional Council if it chooses to exercise its authority due to lack of members of the College One Executive committee).
01.08.C Course Approval (This ruling supersedes Ruling 11.07)
Courses are subject to approval by a Faculty acting as an Academic Senate Bylaw 55 voting unit. A faculty may delegate this authority to a duly constituted subcommittee of the Faculty.
10.08.A Administrators on Senate Committees
No member of the Division holding an administrative title of Chancellor, Vice Chancellor, Provost, Vice Provost, Dean, Associate Dean, Director of an ORU or MRU, or titles with equivalent levels of administrative responsibility, may serve as a member of a divisional committee or as a representative of the Merced Division to any taskforce, committee, or agency (except in a non-voting, ex officio capacity as provided in these Bylaws.) These restrictions do not apply to chairs of academic departments or programs, or to titles with equivalent levels of administrative responsibility, with the exception of membership on the Committee on Academic Personnel, the Committee on Privilege and Tenure, and the Committee on Academic Planning and Resource Allocation.
10.08.B Partial Administrative Appointments
Partial appointments to administrative positions above the level of academic department or program chair (or equivalent officers) are equivalent to full appointments for the purposes of personnel and academic policies.
02.12 Bylaw Unit Personnel Vote
Without explicit joint membership in two units, it is implicit in the bylaws that the faculty of SNS who became part of the four new Bylaw 55 units left the original SNS unit, thus leaving a set of "residual" faculty. These faculty, as a group, have all the privileges of voting on personnel issues, etc. as specified in the bylaws. The vote is therefore valid.
03.17 General Education Program Approval Process
Approval of the General Education curriculum will require a majority vote of the Senate faculty of the Merced Division, not counting abstentions, with the vote taking place before UGC votes on the proposal, and in turn before Divisional Council votes to approve the proposal.
05.09 Undergraduate Council/General Education Executive Committee Memberships - Potential Conflicts of Interest
It is incumbent on every faculty to be diligent, careful, and thoughtful in declaring any potential conflict of interest. In keeping with the UGC conflict of interest policy, “In “grey areas” where a UGC member is uncertain regarding recusal, the member may disclose the potential grounds for recusal to the UGC Chair and the UGC Analyst. The Chair may then determine whether the member should recuse himself or herself, or the Chair may seek the advice of other Council members in making this determination. The Chair or members may suggest that a member abstain from voting when a conflict of interest exists. The Chair should consult the whole Council regarding potential grounds for his/her own recusal. In making its determination regarding recusal in “grey areas”, the Council will take into account the fact that, by design, each member brings valuable and unique expertise to the Council as a whole.
*Numbering indicates the month and year in which the ruling was made (e.g., January 2008 = 01.08.A, where A indicates the first ruling that month).