| 03.20.2018

No quorum, no vote — Jurisdiction policy change put on hold after lack of all-faculty vote


Associate Dean of Students Craig Chatriand said he was disappointed the university faculty was not able to reach a voting quorum to consider changes to the student code of conduct at Tuesday’s all-faculty meeting.

Chatriand’s disappointment came after months of work with Dean of Students Bruce Pitman to amend and update the student code of conduct with the addition of an amnesty policy and an update to the jurisdiction clause. While the amnesty policy passed onto Interim President Don Burnett for approval, the jurisdiction clause is still in question.

“I was disappointed there wasn’t a quorum for the jurisdiction piece,” Chatriand said. “The amnesty piece will still be implemented with the president’s signature by Jan. 1.”

To reach a quorum,  one-eighth of the 808 eligible faculty members needed to attend the meeting. Including those who attended via teleconference, the meeting was 20 people short of reaching quorum.

The change in jurisdiction would have extended the jurisdiction of the student code of conduct to cover off-campus activity if voted on by the faculty and passed by Burnett. If the change had been voted through, it was expected to go into effect by Jan. 1. Now G Costa of university general counsel said it is unclear when those changes might be able to go into effect.

The recommended change to add an amnesty policy to the code was able to pass without an official vote of the faculty because it did not interfere with the student statement of rights — a separate policy from the student code of conduct.

Dean of Students Bruce Pitman and Associate Dean of Students Craig Chatriand have been working to update and amend the student code of conduct for several months. The current code had not been updated since 1969.

A recommendation to the faculty to pass the two changes to the code was made by the faculty senate in November after months of deliberation and collaboration with the Dean of Students Office and University Judicial Counsel.

Patricia Hartzell, chair of the faculty senate, said she too was disappointed by the lack of vote but knew that it was a possibility.

“I’m always disappointed,” Hartzell said. “It’s very hard to get a quorum at the winter meeting.”

Hartzell said she guessed there would be 90 percent approval of the changes from faculty.

The next all-faculty meeting where the jurisdiction change could be voted on is in April. For this reason, Costa said it’s possible Burnett could make an emergency decision to put the jurisdiction policy in place for 180 days. If at the end of that 180 days, the policy has not been passed by a vote of the faculty, it will be void and put to another vote at the next all-faculty meeting.

At press time, Burnett had not made a decision on his approval of either change to the code.

Kaitlyn Krasselt can be reached at arg-news@uidaho.edu

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