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ARTICLE I: NAME AND MEMBERSHIP
Section I: Name
The name of this organization shall be the Graduate Student Association of the University of California, San Diego, herein called the GSAUCSD.
Section II: Membership
Any person duly registered as a graduate or professional student at the University of California, San Diego (herein referred to as UCSD), and paying the graduate student activity fee, shall be a full member of the GSAUCSD. Subject to applicable qualifications, all members shall be eligible to hold office in the GSAUCSD or in any one of its subordinate organizations.
ARTICLE II: PURPOSE
The objective of the GSAUCSD shall be to represent and advance the interests and objectives of graduate and professional students of UCSD.
ARTICLE III: STATUS
The GSAUCSD is an unincorporated association of graduate and professional students at UCSD. The GSAUCSD Council (herein referred to as the Council) is the duly constituted representative assembly of GSAUCSD. The Council’s mandate is to act on behalf of the members of the GSAUCSD and is derived directly from the graduate and professional student body of UCSD. The GSAUCSD is constituted as such according to the provisions of the United States Constitution on freedom of speech and association. The GSAUCSD is an "Authorized Student Government" at UCSD.
ARTICLE IV: GOVERNING DOCUMENTS
This Constitution shall serve as the primary governing document for the GSAUCSD. The GSAUCSD shall additionally adopt Bylaws to govern its internal organization. In the event of a conflict or inconsistency between the Constitution and Bylaws, the Constitution shall take precedence. Amendments to the Bylaws shall require a two-thirds vote of Council representatives present and be presented in written form one meeting in advance of the vote. The Bylaws may be suspended by a two-thirds vote of Council representatives present at any meeting where a quorum exists.
Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised shall govern the GSAUCSD in all cases to which they may apply, and in which they are not inconsistent with this Constitution or the Bylaws.
ARTICLE V: COUNCIL
Section I: Powers and Responsibilities
All legislative and administrative authorities of the GSAUCSD are vested in the Council and are exercised according to this Constitution and Bylaws. The Council is the sole and final authority of the GSAUCSD regarding matters including, but not limited to, delegation of authority within the GSAUCSD and expenditure of GSAUCSD funds. The general powers and responsibilities of the Council shall include, but not be limited to, the following:
a. The safeguarding of the rights of students to vote in UCSD campus-based referenda, to be granted representation to UCSD governing bodies, to participate in all GSAUCSD sponsored activities, and to receive a fair hearing on the grievances before any agency of the GSAUCSD.
b. The safeguarding of the rights of students in their dealings with UCSD and its agents regarding:
1. Academic Regulations.
2. UCSD employment and workloads in accordance with the laws governing employment in the State of California.
3. Social and cultural opportunities.
4. Housing and other UCSD services.
c. The official representation of the GSAUCSD to the University of California system-wide organizations, committees, and the University of California Office of the President.
d. The maintenance of a positive working relationship with other student governments and student organizations within UCSD, the University of California, and other universities.
e. The development, review, and approval of an annual budget for the GSAUCSD.
f. The sponsorship, organization, and promotion of programming for GSAUCSD as it deems appropriate.
g. Supervision and direction of conduct, affairs, policies, and properties under the jurisdiction of the GSAUCSD.
h. Sponsorship, support, and aid to student organizations who are concerned with the GSAUCSD according to its Financial Bylaws.
Section II: Council Representatives
For the purposes of this Constitution, the term "Department" shall encompass all officially recognized UCSD academic departments and programs that serve as a primary academic home for graduate or professional students, as defined by UCSD’s Registrar Fall Quarter third-week enrollment statistics.
The Council shall consist of two graduate student representatives from each participating Department. Departments with at least 100 (but less than 200) students shall have three representatives. Departments with 200 or more students shall have four representatives. All of these representatives shall have the right to vote at Council meetings.
Departments are encouraged to provide a designated alternate. In the absence of a certified representative at a meeting of the Council, a designated alternate from the same Department may be considered a certified representative for the purposes of that meeting so long as the absent representative has not delegated his or her vote to someone other than the alternate.
Council representatives shall be registered graduate or professional students who represent their respective Departments. Interdisciplinary students may represent any Department for which they are registered, but no individual may represent more than one Department.
Council representatives shall be elected by their respective Department using a process to be determined in writing, and submitted to the GSAUCSD by each Department. Guidelines for elections shall be set forth in the Election Bylaws. The graduate or professional students within individual Departments shall have autonomy regarding procedures for the election of their respective Council representatives, provided that these procedures are not in conflict with the guidelines in the Election Bylaws.
The term of office for Council representatives shall be for one year, beginning and ending on the first day of classes in Fall Quarter.
One representative from the Associated Student of UCSD, appointed by the Associated Students of UCSD Council, shall serve as a non-voting member of the Council.
One representative from the Office of Graduate Studies, appointed by the Dean of Graduate Studies, shall serve as a non-voting member of the Council.
Council representatives may be identified by a letter of certification sent from their Department to the GSAUCSD President and Executive Vice President of Internal Affairs. The GSAUCSD President will establish the validity of the certification and will grant immediate recognition to new representatives that are properly certified.
If the validity of the election of a Council representative is contested by a member of the representative's Department, the Council shall examine the evidence presented by both parties and settle the dispute by a majority vote. The Council has the authority to call for a second election if it deems it necessary.
D. Proxy Voting
Each certified representative shall be allowed one vote at Council meetings. In the case of absence from a Council meeting, representatives may delegate another certified representative from their Department as a voting proxy. Delegation of proxy must be done for each meeting and presented to the Council Chair in writing. The Chair cannot serve as a proxy.
E. Removal of Council Representatives
Representatives may be recalled by a majority vote of their Department under the same rules stated in Article V, Section II(B).
Section III: Council Meetings
A. Regular Council Meetings
The Council must convene at a minimum of fifteen times per academic year.
B. Special Council Meetings
Special meetings of the Council may be called by the GSAUCSD President or when requested by Council representatives from three different Departments. Departmental requests for a special meeting should be routed through the GSAUCSD office. The GSAUCSD President must call the special meeting within three working days of the request, or at a later time agreed upon by the Departments requesting the meeting.
A meeting must be attended by one or more representatives from at least one-third of the Departments with certified representatives for a quorum to be present, and for the actions taken at that meeting to be binding on the GSAUCSD.
D. Council Chair
The Council Chair shall preside over Council meetings, and ensure all Council representatives are afforded a fair opportunity to participate in the deliberative processes of the Council.
The GSAUCSD President shall serve as the Council Chair, or designate any member of the GSAUCSD to act in this capacity.
If the Council Chair is also a voting representative of the Council, he or she shall be allowed to vote only in the case of a tie.
Council representatives and their Departments must be sent a written announcement and/or agenda of all meetings of the Council at least two days in advance.
F. Closed Meetings
Meetings of the Council shall be open to the public unless the Council shall go into closed executive session, such as to handle matters relating to personnel, discipline, or contracts.
G. Open Roll Call Voting
An open roll call vote may be initiated by one-third of the Council representatives present at a meeting where a quorum exists. The motion for an open roll call vote shall specify a time limit for voting. If no ending time is specified, the roll shall close immediately prior to the next meeting of the Council.
Open roll call votes may be tendered by voice at the Council meeting, or in person at the GSAUCSD office, or by signed document delivered to the GSAUCSD office prior to the close of voting.
The GSAUCSD Executive Vice President of Internal Affairs shall notify all representatives of any open roll call votes by the same means utilized to distribute agendas for Council meetings.
ARTICLE VI: OFFICERS
All officers of the GSAUCSD have their authority to act as such delegated by the Council, and shall be ex-officio non-voting members of the Council.
An officer may also serve in the capacity as a Council representative if they are elected by their Department in the process stated in Article V, Section II(B), and in such case they shall be allowed to vote in their capacity as a Council representative.
The officers shall be graduate or professional students in good academic standing as defined by the Office of Graduate Studies. Officers who during their tenure become ineligible to serve shall be required to step down.
The duties and responsibly of officers are defined in the Elected and Appointed Officer Bylaws.
The stipends of officers of the GSAUCSD shall be determined when the proposed fiscal budget is approved according to Article V, Section I of the Financial Bylaws. Stipends shall be paid in twelve equal monthly installments. If an officer does not serve a full one calendar year term, payments shall be pro-rated based on time served.
Section I: Elected Officers
The elected officers of the GSAUCSD shall be the President, Executive Vice President of Internal Affairs, Vice President of Academic Affairs, Vice President of Financial Affairs, Vice President of External Affairs, Vice President of Campus Affairs, and Vice President of Diversity Affairs.
The GSAUCSD President shall oversee the direction of GSAUCSD and ensure the execution of GSAUCSD responsibilities and commitments. He or she shall interact with UCSD graduate and professional students, faculty, and staff in order to keep lines of communication open, and to ensure that issues of significant concern to graduate and professional students are brought to the attention of the GSAUCSD and other appropriate organizations or individuals.
The GSAUCSD Executive Vice President of Internal Affairs shall assume the duties of the GSAUCSD President on an interim basis in the event of his or her removal or resignation. He or she shall chair Council and Executive Committee meetings in the absence of the President or his/her designee.
The procedure for electing officers, including rules for the order of election and nomination for multiple offices, shall be set forth in the Election Bylaws.
The term of elected officers shall end at the adjournment of the last regularly scheduled Council meeting of the academic year, at which time newly elected officers shall be installed.
In the event of removal or resignation of an elected officer, the position shall be filled by special election for the remainder of the original term. In exceptional cases, if the Council so decides by a majority vote prior to opening nominations, the position may be filled for a specific shorter term and another special election scheduled at the end of that term.
Section II: Appointed Officers
The Council may choose to appoint officers to other positions, as set forth in the Elected and Appointed Officer Bylaws.
When a nomination for an appointed officer is presented to the Council, the Council shall consider the question, "Will the Council confirm this nomination?" The Council may, by a majority vote, determine that a particular nomination shall be considered in closed executive session.
In the event of removal or resignation of an appointed officer, the position shall be filled by the appointment process specified the Elected and Appointed Officer Bylaws.
Section III: Executive Committee
The GSAUCSD Executive Committee shall consist of all elected and appointed officers of the GSAUCSD. The Executive Committee shall be chaired by the GSAUCSD President, or his or her designee. The meetings of the GSAUCSD Executive Committee shall be held at least once between the regular meetings of the Council.
Section IV: Discipline of Officers
Officers guilty of misconduct or neglect of duty in office are subject to the following disciplinary actions by the Council: censure or removal from office. A fair disciplinary process, as described by the GSAUCSD's parliamentary authority, shall be required.
ARTICLE VII: BALLOTING AND CAMPUS-BASED STUDENT FEES
The graduate and professional student body shall be polled by electronic ballot using the UCSD online student-records system (or a comparable electronic alternative) or by mail ballot (at the discretion of the Executive Committee) regarding matters having an impact on the graduate student activity fee or other campus-based student fees. Ballots will normally be sent to students through campus mail. Any student has the right to have his/her ballot mailed to his/her place of residence, upon request.
In the case of mail ballots, students should request registration forms for "absentee" ballots from their Department graduate coordinator, their Council representatives or the GSAUCSD office. The lists of eligible graduate and professional students shall be provided by the Student Affairs Offices of the respective Departments or the Office of Graduate Studies.
To establish, increase, reduce, or eliminate any campus-based graduate and professional student fee through the process of a student fee referendum, the Council must, by a majority vote, place a fee referendum on a ballot for graduate and professional students to vote on.
If the change in the campus-based student fee would affect both undergraduate and graduate students, the Council, by a two-thirds vote of representatives present, and the Associated students must both agree to place a fee referendum on a ballot for undergraduate, graduate, and professional students to vote on.
Before placing a facility-fee referendum on the ballot, the involved student government(s) must approve a facility board charter conforming to the following requirements:
- The sole purpose of the facility board must be to oversee the facility, with jurisdiction including annual review and approval of the operating budget, space allocation, rent assessments, custodial standards, capital improvements, maintenance and renovation, purchase of equipment, and hours of operation.
- Students as a proportion of facility board voting members must be no less than student fees as a proportion of total facility funding, excluding generated revenue.
- If more than half of facility funding (excluding generated revenue) will come from student fees, then the facility board must be chaired by a student, and the student members of the facility board shall be involved in the selection and regular review of key administrative personnel for the facility.
If a facility board already exists for the facility, it must be reconstituted to conform to the above requirements.
For a referendum that establishes or increases a campus-based student fee, the following information must be included in the ballot language:
- The purpose of the fee. For facility fees, the services and amenities that will be provided in the new facility must be listed, as well as the planned location and approximate gross square footage of the facility. For activity fees, the type(s) of activities supported by the fee must be listed as specifically as possible, as well as which campus department(s) will receive and allocate the funds.
- The body that will oversee the fee. For facility fees, a facility board (described earlier) must be designated, and a reference to the facility board charter included. For activity fees, the involved student government(s) shall have oversight of the fee, and must annually review and approve the operating budget.
- For facility fees, the dollar amount per quarter for debt repayment, and the dollar amount per quarter for maintenance and operation. The debt-retirement period must be specified in years or months.
- The total dollar amount per quarter of the fee. For facility fees, this is equal to the sum of the amounts described above for debt repayment and for maintenance and operation.
- When the fee will begin to be collected.
For a referendum that establishes or increases a campus-based student fee, the following sentences must appear in the ballot language:
- “This fee will be included in the determination of financial aid.”
- “Annual budget reports will be made public and provided to all UCSD student governments.”
- “Modifications to this fee may not be made without a subsequent student referendum held in accordance with the appropriate student governmental and University policies, unless other means are explicitly provided in this ballot language.”
For a referendum that establishes or increases a facility fee, the following sentences must appear in the ballot language:
- “No additional debt may be levied against this fee, nor may an increase of the debt- retirement period be made, without a subsequent student referendum held in accordance with the appropriate student governmental and University policies.”
- “After the debt-retirement period specified herein, the debt-repayment portion of the fee, also specified herein, shall not be collected.”
- “A Building Advisory Committee (BAC) shall oversee the planning, design, and construction of the facility, shall have students as a proportion of voting members no less than student fees as a proportion of total facility funding, and shall have a student co-chair elected by the student membership of the BAC.”
- “Other funds that become available after the referendum may be applied to the reduction of this fee by decision of the facility board.”
For any fee referendum to be approved, a majority of votes cast in the fee referendum must approve the change in the campus-based student fee. Additionally, the number of students casting ballots must equal or exceed 20% of the registered students affected by the fee at the time the election is held.
Counting of ballots shall be supervised by a committee comprised of the Assistant Dean of the Office of Graduate Studies, or their appointee; and four members of the GSAUCSD selected by the Council. Graduate or professional students who are currently running for an office cannot be appointed to the committee.
ARTICLE VIII: AMENDMENTS TO THE CONSTITUTION
This Constitution may be amended by a two-thirds vote of Council representatives present at two consecutive Council meetings provided that all Council representatives have been sent the text of the proposed amendment at least five working days prior to the first meeting.