Unanimously approved on August 13, 2015
NMSU Employee Council Constitution
ARTICLE I – NAME
The name of this organization shall be the NMSU Employee Council.
ARTICLE II – FUNCTIONS
NMSU Employee Council’s function is to perform the following:
- Review and develop proposals on matters involving the policies and procedures of the administration of the university.
- Make recommendations to the University President and/or units based on such reviews.
- Provide communication between the staff and the administration of the university including community colleges.
- A copy of the minutes of each meeting of the NMSU Employee Council shall be transmitted to the University President and posted on NMSU Employee Council web site (empcouncil.nmsu.edu) one week after approval. Approval is typically at the next regularly scheduled Employee Council meeting.
- All documentation produced by NMSU Employee Council will be archived in NMSU’s SharePoint site (nmsusharepoint.nmsu.edu) and contained within the Employee Council folder therein.
- The Employee Council Chair has the discretionary authority to grant all access to the Employee Council documents held in NMSU SharePoint.
- Every February the incoming Chair shall, via email to firstname.lastname@example.org, request access to the archived documents and the SharePoint site and shall include the names and usernames of those who need access.
- Those who no longer need access to the archived Employee Council documents shall be removed from the NMSU SharePoint by the request of the current chair.
NMSU Employee Council shall have complete authority to determine its own procedure.
ARTICLE III – MEMBERSHIP
The staff of the university, for the purposes of the constitution, shall consist of full-time employees not represented by any bargaining unit (e.g. AFSME). Further elaboration of this definition shall be done as needed by NMSU Employee Council.
Membership of the NMSU Employee Council shall be elected from the following areas which they shall represent. However, individual representatives shall not be restricted to considering matters pertaining only to the area from which they were elected. For purposes of election of members, employee areas (per Human Resources record) are broken down as follows:
- “Las Cruces Area” (includes Las Cruces campus, Doña Ana Cooperative Extension and Doña Ana Community College) will be divided into faculty; exempt staff; and non-exempt staff not represented by a bargaining unit. Through the election process, NMSU Employee Council will put forth its best efforts to assure:
- Membership shall represent the demographic distribution of classifications (i.e. faculty, exempt and non-exempt staff not represented by any bargaining unit).
- “Community Colleges Outside Las Cruces Area” (includes all Community Colleges outside Dona Ana County) will be considered as a separate area.
- “Others Outside of Las Cruces Area” (includes Research Centers, Cooperative Extension and other remote facilities) will be considered as a separate area.
- Membership includes no more than two representatives per classification from an NMSU summary organization as defined in the Banner hierarchy.
Non-exempt employees represented by a collective bargaining unit are not included in NMSU Employee Council membership. These employees may be included to participate on employee council as non-voting members and may not serve on any HR-related committees. The non-exempt employees not represented by a collective bargaining unit (non-probationary, non-exempt employees who are supervisors, managers, and confidential employees, sworn police officers, and employees employed outside the State of New Mexico) will be included in NMSU Employee Council membership.
To maintain a representative membership, demographic distribution data will be reviewed prior to election in odd years and membership adjusted according to the distribution at that time. NMSU Employee Council Chair-Elect will prepare demographic distribution data and recommend distribution of membership for the following: Las Cruces Area distributed into faculty, exempt, non-exempt not represented by a bargaining unit; Community Colleges Outside Las Cruces Area; and Others Outside of Las Cruces Area. The recommended distribution will be presented to NMSU Employee Council members in October for review and approval.
The number of alternates for each classification will be fixed. Las Cruces Area will have four alternates each (4 faculty, 4 exempt, 4 non-exempt). Community Colleges Outside Las Cruces and Others Outside of Las Cruces Areas will have two alternates each. NMSU Employee Council will put forth its best efforts to assure that alternates have no more than one representative per classification from a NMSU summary organization as defined in the Banner hierarchy.
ARTICLE IV – NOMINATIONS, ELECTIONS, AND TERM OF OFFICE
The NMSU Employee Council Chair shall appoint at least three members to an Election Committee. Election Committee members may not run for re-election. This Election Committee shall send nomination forms to all personnel of each respective area indicating the number of classifications to be filled. Whenever possible, these shall be sent by November 1 of each year.
Whenever possible, the Election Committee shall send ballots by December 1 of each year. All personnel may vote once for each classification of which they are members. Whenever possible, the completed ballots should be received by the Election Committee no later than the working day nearest the 15th of December. The ballots shall be counted by the Election Committee.
The Election Committee shall notify the Chair of NMSU Employee Council of the number of votes received by each candidate by the end of December. Those elected can choose to attend the January Employee Council meeting as guests. The chair-elect shall keep this record for the 3-year term in the event that an alternate might need to be selected to fill an unexpired term.
In cases of tie votes, NMSU Employee Council membership shall vote by secret ballot to determine the winner.
The Election Committee shall notify each person who was nominated concerning the results of the election. Those elected begin serving their 3-year terms at the February meeting.
If a member is unable to complete the term of office, NMSU Employee Council shall select, by secret ballot, an elected alternate representing the same area and classification as the departing member to serve the remainder of that term. If an alternate in the same area and classification is not available to be selected, employee council may choose to elect from the remaining alternates.
If an open area and classification becomes available an alternate member with the same area and classification shall serve their remaining term as a voting member.
ARTICLE V – ELIGIBILITY FOR VOTING AND HOLDING OFFICE
Every regular employee of the areas defined in Section B of Article III shall be eligible to vote to elect their Employee Council representatives. No person is eligible to vote in more than one of these areas as defined under Article III.
ARTICLE VI – OFFICERS
At the regular February meeting, members of the NMSU Employee Council shall elect from the primary representatives a chair, chair-elect, secretary/treasurer website coordinator and marketing coordinator. The secretary/treasurer, website coordinator and marketing coordinator shall hold office for 1 year. The chair-elect shall serve as a member of the Executive Committee for 3 years: 1 year as chair-elect, 1 year as chair, and 1 year as past-chair. The chair shall serve for 2 years: 1 year as chair and 1 year as past-chair. In the event that the past-chair no longer serves as a primary NMSU Employee Council member, past-chair will act as an ex-officio member of both the NMSU Employee Council and its Executive Committee during the 1-year past-chair term.
ARTICLE VII — MEETINGS
Regular meetings will be held the second Thursday of each month. Time and place of each meeting shall be determined by NMSU Employee Council at its previous meeting, or at the discretion of Chair of the NMSU Employee Council.
The Chair of NMSU Employee Council may call special meetings at any time. Such meetings shall be limited to the consideration of the specific items of business designated in the call of the meeting.
Any regular staff of the university may attend any of the regular council meetings. Visitors may participate in the discussions and deliberations at the invitation of the NMSU Employee Council.
A simple majority of NMSU Employee Council voting members shall constitute a quorum. If a quorum of voting members is not present, the chair may enact that all alternates serve as a voting member. If a voting member is not able to attend, they may ask an alternate to attend and act as a voting member in their place. The voting member must email the chair at least one day before the meeting to inform the chair of this change.
The Chair shall notify NMSU Employee Council members of meetings in advance and provide members with a copy of the agenda for such meetings via email and the NMSU Employee Council website (empcouncil.nmsu.edu).
Primary representatives are requested to attend the monthly meetings on a continuous basis or send an alternate in their place. If a primary representative does not attend two consecutive meetings or fails to have an alternate attend, NMSU Employee Council may replace the primary representative with an appropriate alternate.
ARTICLE VIII – PROPOSITIONS AND CONSIDERATION
NMSU Employee Council may consider matters on its own initiative, matters submitted by the University President, or matters submitted by an individual employee of the university.
All propositions except those made by the University President or by members of NMSU Employee Council shall be communicated in writing to NMSU Employee Council through the NMSU Employee Council Chair, NMSU Employee Council representative or the NMSU Employee Council website.
All NMSU Employee Council recommendations will be sent to the University President in writing from the NMSU Employee Council Chair.
ARTICLE IX – AMENDMENTS
Amendments to this constitution may be proposed in writing by resolution of NMSU Employee Council. Such proposed amendments shall be considered adopted if approved by a two-thirds majority of NMSU Employee Council and by the University President.
If any article, section, subsection, sentence, clause, or phrase of this constitution is, for any reason, held to be invalid, such decision shall not affect the validity of the remaining portion of this constitution.
NMSU Employee Council Bylaws
- The NMSU Employee Council shall establish from time to time bylaws to describe and define the manner by which its activities and functions shall be performed.
- NMSU Employee Council may make any motion into a bylaw by the agreement of two-thirds of the membership of the council. Bylaw changes will be presented and voted on at the next regular meeting.
- The Elected Representatives and the Officers’ of the Employee Council shall perform the following duties:
- Preside at meetings
- Call and run NMSU Employee Council meetings
- Call and run NMSU Employee Council Executive Committee meetings
- Attend all meetings as requested by administration
- Check and respond to NMSU Employee Council emails
- Review and edit website with the website coordinator
- Review and edit minutes with the secretary/treasurer
- Draft and prepare any materials needed for NMSU Employee Council events/meetings
- Serve on committees as needed
- Serve on the NMSU Employee Council Picnic Committee
- Chair the NMSU Employee Council Strategic Plan Committee
- Serve as the ex-officio member of all NMSU Employee Council committees
- Appoint ad hoc committees as needed
- Appoint Ex-officio member to the Faculty Senate (which may be the Faculty Senate representative)
- Serve as a member of Administrative Council
- Report NMSU Employee Council Activities at regular Board of Regents meetings
The Chair Elect
- Substitute for Chair when Chair is unable to serve
- Serve on NMSU Employee Council Executive Committee
- Serve on the NMSU Employee Council Picnic Committee
- Serve on the NMSU Employee Council Strategic Plan Committee
- Chair the Election Committee
- Chair the NMSU Employee Council Recognition Committee
- Chair the Roberts Memorial Staff Award Committee
- Chair the A Mountain Award Committee
- Serve as NMSU Employee Council chair the following year
- Keep a current record of primary and alternate members with dates of term expiration (All files to be kept in the Employee Council SharePoint folder)
- Keep a current record and fill any vacancies of all NMSU Employee Council committees. A list of any vacancies needs to be provided to the chair at least one week before the next NMSU Employee Council meeting. All files will be kept in the Employee Council SharePoint folder.
- Serve as a voting member of Executive Committee
- Serve in an advisory capacity to NMSU Employee Council
- Serve as a non-voting member of Executive Committee
- Update Employee Council Webpage
- Post all meeting documentation, news, and other pertinent information as approved by the Executive Committee
- Update Employee Council Web Page
- Serve as member of Executive Committee
- Serve as Council Parliamentarian
- Maintain a current constitution and bylaws of the council and have it available for use at all times
- Arrange for distribution of constitution and bylaws to council members and others as directed by the Chair
- Maintain a file of minutes for 3 years
- Transfer approved minutes with all presented attachments within 30 days after approval by NMSU Employee Council to the NMSU Employee Council SharePoint folder
- Oversee the management, recording and reporting of the Employee Council finances
The Recording Secretary
- Prepare accurate records of all business meetings and will transmit those records on a timely basis to NMSU Employee Council membership
- Take roll at meetings (specify members, alternates, visitors)
- Determine if a quorum is present
- Keep an accurate record of business conducted
- Post all relevant information to Employee Council SharePoint folder
A Primary Representative
- Attend all regular and special meetings
- If unable to attend, arrange for an alternate to attend
- Serve on at least one Employee council or NMSU Committee as approved by Employee Council membership
- Participate in the majority of Employee Council events
- Provide feedback and updates to the department/college representing as a member
An Alternate Representative
- Attend meetings as a nonvoting member (or stay informed about NMSU Employee Council’s business)
- Substitute for voting members as requested by a member or the chair
- Fill the unexpired term of a member from the same area and classification in the case of the member’s resignation
The President’s Representative
- Appointed by the University President
- Attend all NMSU Employee Council and Executive Committee meetings as non-voting member
- Act as liaison between NMSU Employee Council and the University President
- NMSU Employee Council shall have the power to create ad-hoc or standing committees as may be necessary.
- Any full-time employee shall be eligible to serve on any of the committees created.
- NMSU Employee Council shall have an Executive Committee that consists of the chair, chair-elect, past-chair (ex-officio), secretary/treasurer and Presidents Representative (ex-officio). This Executive Committee shall maintain an agenda to conduct the business of NMSU Employee Council and make other decisions that may appear necessary or business that NMSU Employee Council may be asked to do.
- NMSU Employee Council shall have a permanent committee on fringe benefits, excluding insurance. The Fringe Benefits Committee will be comprised of seven members plus two ex-officio members. The Fringe Benefits Committee members shall serve staggered 3-year terms, subject to reappointment by NMSU Employee Council. The ex-officio members shall be the Human Resources Services Director or a designated representative and the Controller or a designated representative. The ex-officio members shall be non-voting. One member and an alternate will be appointed from among NMSU retirees . Appointments to the committee shall be made by NMSU Employee Council. The Fringe Benefits Committee shall elect its Chair and other such officers as it deems necessary. The Chair, if not a duly elected voting member of the Employee Council, shall serve as an ex-officio nonvoting member of NMSU Employee Council.
- NMSU Employee Council shall have a permanent committee on insurance. The Insurance Committee will be comprised of six members plus four ex-officio members. The Insurance Committee members shall serve staggered 3-year terms. The ex-officio members shall be the Human Resources Services Director or a designated representative, the Pioneer Representative from NMSU Employee Council, the Director of University Health Center or their designee and the Controller or a designated representative. The ex-officio members shall be non- voting. Appointments to the Insurance Committee shall be made by NMSU Employee Council and shall have 3 members that are current retirees and 3 members that are currently active employees. NMSU Employee Council will also appoint one alternate that is a retiree and one alternate that is a current employee. The Insurance Committee shall elect its Chair and other such officers as it deems necessary. The Chair shall serve as an ex-officio, non-voting member of NMSU Employee Council, if they are not a duly elected voting member.
- NMSU Employee Council shall establish ad hoc committees to do various assignments as they develop. The following steps shall prevail in setting up the membership and organization of such committees: (1) NMSU Employee Council will select the membership of each committee; (2) the Chair of the committee shall be selected by NMSU Employee Council or the Executive Committee; (3) the Executive Committee shall instruct the Chair and the members of the committee on (a) the objectives proposed for the accomplishment of the committee; and (b) a proposed time schedule for the accomplishment of the objectives, with the right of the committee to make adjustments in both (a) and (b) with the consent of the Executive Committee. The committee will be considered as discharged when it completes the assignment.
- Recognition Committee – A committee shall be appointed annually to select recipients for the Stephen W. and Robert E. Roberts Memorial Staff Award and the A Mountain Award (Spring and Fall). Members (primary and alternate) of NMSU Employee Council cannot be considered for this award during their term as a voting or alternate member. Other awards or events will be completed by this committee as charged by NMSU President, Employee Council or Executive Committee.
- NMSU Employee Council makes appointments to other campus committees. The NMSU Employee Council representative to these committees is responsible for reporting committee activities to NMSU Employee Council.
History of the bylaws
Adopted January 14, 2010
Revised: July 12, 2018