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A Guide to the Procedures of the Manoa Faculty Senate

Meetings. The Senate meets once a month. It is common for standing committees to schedule a regular monthly meeting, but the actual schedule of standing committee meetings will depend on circumstances.

Attendance. Senators are expected to attend all meetings of the Senate and of the standing committee to which they are assigned. If you cannot attend a Senate meeting, you should inform the Senate office by calling 956-7725 or by e-mailing Kristin Herrick <herrickk@hawaii.edu>. You may wish to have someone attend the Senate meeting in your place. However, the Senate does not permit proxy voting. If you must miss several meetings, you should resign or take leave from the Senate.

Standing Committees. In many respects, the focus of Senate business is the standing committee. Normally, resolutions and other actions come before the Senate only through standing committees. Standing committees act proactively; they do not simply wait for business to be referred to them. If you wish to have some matter addressed by the Senate, it is best to bring it to the attention of a standing committee or to the Senate Executive Committee, who will then usually refer it to a standing committee.

The Senate Executive Committee (SEC) and liaisons. For each standing committee, one member of the Executive Committee serves as liaison. The liaison attends standing committee meetings and works closely with the standing committee chair. The SEC meets each Monday afternoon for many hours and engages in extensive e-mail discussion between meetings.

Timing of meetings and the preparation of the agenda. The SEC drafts an agenda for a Senate meeting on the Monday of the week preceding the Senate meeting (nine days before the Senate meeting). If a standing committee wishes to bring a matter before the Senate, the liaison must relay it to the SEC at this time. For this reason, standing committees often schedule their regular meetings during the week before the SEC prepares the agenda. The SEC does not need to have final wording of resolutions at the time the agenda is drafted on Monday, but the substance must be known in enough detail so that the Senate can be given notice of the issues they will have to deal with.

The SEC must give adequate notice of the agenda. While there is no particular rule about how much notice must be given, the SEC tries to post the final agenda no later than Thursday or Friday of the week preceding the Senate meeting.

SEC acting for the Senate. The SEC is permitted to act for the Senate when it is impractical to assemble a quorum for a full Senate meeting. In practice, this means that the SEC acts for the Senate during the summer and reports on its summer actions at the first regular fall meeting.

Senate Rules of Order

The Senate's Rules of Order are determined by its Charter and Bylaws and by the most recent edition of Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised (RONR). There are certain aspects of parliamentary procedure that are especially important to the Senate.