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Constitution

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Constitution

of the

Siena College Student Body

Preamble

We, the students of Siena College, in order to provide leadership, promote campus and civic participation, improve the academic and residential communities on campus and inform the students of their rights, hereby establish this constitution and adopt it as the supreme governing document for all students.

Article I – The Student Body

All fully matriculated undergraduate students shall be known collectively as the Siena College Student Body.

Article II - The Student Senate

Section OneAuthority

The legislative power of the Student Body shall rest in the Siena College Student Senate, acting as the representatives of the Student Body to the Board of Trustees, College Administration, Faculty, Alumni, and the community at large.

Section Two – Election

The Student Body shall have the power to elect members of the Student Senate.

Section ThreeComposition

a)       Each class president shall be the representative of their class to the Student Senate.

b)       The General Members of Senate will be comprised of five (5) Senators elected by the student body in the fall elections.

i.                      Any full-time, undergraduate student within the college community is eligible to run for a general member position.

ii.                    Each candidate will be required to gain 200 signatures in order to run for a general member position.

c)       It is strongly encouraged that the Senate President appoints one of the general members as co-chair of each of senate’s standing committees.

d)       The commuter president shall be the representative of commuter students to the Student Senate.

e)       The President, Vice-President, Secretary, and Treasurer of the Student Senate shall represent the Student Body at large.

f)        A student at-large, as appointed by the Senate, who shall represent the Student Events Board (SEB) to the Senate and the Senate to the SEB.

g)       The Student Conduct Review Board (SCRB) shall be represented by its Chairperson.

h)       Voting members may hold no more than one position on the Senate nor be a member of the SCRB.

Section Four – Voting

Only elected members of Senate may exercise a vote. No appointed member of Senate, excluding appointed members appointed to seats normally elected, is eligible to vote. Appointed members appointed to normally electable seats shall have the ability to exercise a vote. The Senate President may only vote in the event of a tie.

Section Five – Meetings

a)       The Student Senate shall meet at least once a week while classes are in session.

b)       All regular meetings shall be announced and open to the public.

c)       Minutes of each meeting shall be made public.

d)       A quorum shall consist of a simple majority of the voting members.

Section Six – Powers of the Senate

a)       To review and approve of all actions of Student Senate committees by a simple majority vote of the entire Student Senate.

b)       To confirm all appointments to the SCRB, the various committees, or vacant constitutional offices by a simple majority vote of the present voting members.

c)       To approve the charters of the student clubs and organizations. The Senate reserves the right to suspend the charter of any student organization that does not comply with the regulations as set forth by the Student Senate. 

d)       To take all actions that shall be necessary and proper for carrying out the will of the Student Body.

Article III – The Executive Board

Section One – Authority

The executive power of the Student body shall rest in the Executive Board of the Student Senate whose duties are expressed in the Student Senate By-Laws.

Section Two – Election

The Student Body shall have the power to elect members of the Executive Board.

Section Three – Composition

The Executive Board shall consist of the President, Vice President,Secretary, and Treasurer.

 Article IV – The Student Conduct Review Board

Section One – Authority

The judicial powers of the Student Body shall rest in the Student Conduct Review Board, which shall act in accordance with this Constitution, all other college policies, and Siena Life.

Section Two – Selection

Student members are appointed by the Student Senate President and must be confirmed by the Student Senate. Appointments are made in accordance with the findings of a search committee comprised of representatives from the Student Senate, returning Board members and the Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs/Dean of Students.

Section Three – Composition

Membership is reserved for two seniors, two juniors, two sophomores, and three students at large. Members shall hold office during good behavior.

Section Four – Chairperson and Associate Chairs

a)       The Board shall select one member to serve as Chair and two members to serve as Associate Chairs.

b)       The Chair is a returning Board member of junior or senior status who serves as Chair of the Board, supervisor of members and advocates, and as a resource for students.

c)       An Associate Chair is a returning Board member who serves as a Vice-Chair of the Board, assists the Chair in the performance of the duties of the office, and convenes hearings when the Chair is unavailable.

Section Five – Meetings

The Board is not required to meet on a regular basis. A minimum of five members are required to attend a hearing. Students must compose a majority of members present at all hearings. 

Section Six – Powers

a.)     To convene hearings pursuant to the impeachment policy set forth in this Constitution.

b.)     To convene hearings in relation to violations of the Siena College Code of Conduct.

 Article V – Committees of the Senate

Section One – Designation

All committees shall either be a Standing Committee, Executive Committee, or an Ad Hoc Committee.

a)       Standing Committees of the Senate shall be the Academics, Community, and Services Committees.

b)       Executive Committees are all other committees of the Student Senate.

c)       Ad Hoc Committees are temporary committees formed for a specific reason by the Senate President.

 Article VI – The Student Events Board

Section One – Purpose

The Student Events Board shall be the primary programming board for the Siena College Student Body and shall be considered a student organization subject to the provisions set forth in this Constitution.

Section Two – Power and Authority

The Student Events Board will oversee and regulate fundraising activities hosted by clubs and organizations on campus.

 Article VII – The Class Councils

Section One – Authority

The decision making power of each of the four classes shall reside in and be exercised by the Class Council of each class. 

Section Two – Election

The Student Body shall have the power to elect members of the Class Councils.

Section Three – Composition

A Class Council shall consist of a President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer.

Section Four – Membership

The composition of the four classes shall be defined in accordance with the Siena College Course Catalog.

 Article VIII –Commuter Council

Section One – Authority

The decision making power of each of the commuters shall reside in and be exercised by their respective council. 

Section Two – Election

All non-resident students shall have the power to elect members of the Commuter Council.

Section Three – Composition

The Commuter Life Council shall consist of an elected President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer, and three commuter students at-large who are appointed by the Commuter President.

Section FourMembership

 The composition of the commuter population shall be defined by residence status.

 Article IX- Residence Hall Association

Section One- Authority

The Residence Hall Association (RHA) shall be the official liaison between the college’s residential students and its staff and administration. It is intended to be the official voice of the residential students and to serve as a programming organization within the residential communities on campus. Its composition, guidelines, and procedures shall be found in its own written Constitution, which must remain available to the public.

 Article X- Budget Allocation Committee

Section One- Authority

The Budget Allocation Committee shall be a committee of the Student Senate of Siena College. It is responsible for the official recommendation(s) made to Student Senate for the allocation of Student Activities Fund money to clubs and organizations.

Section Two- Composition

The Student Senate Treasurer shall serve as the Chairperson of the Budget Allocation Committee. The Chairperson of the Budget Allocation Committee reserves his or her vote until a tie has arisen among the general members of the Budget Allocation Committee.  

The Student Senate Vice President shall be a permanent, voting member of the Budget Allocation Committee unless a conflict of interest arises in a particular budget request.

The Student Senate Comptroller shall be a permanent, non-voting member of the Budget Allocation Committee.

One additional Senator at-large shall be a permanent, voting member of the Budget Allocation Committee unless a conflict of interest arises in a particular budget request. He or she is to be appointed by the Student Senate President, Vice President, and Treasurer, respectively upon the approval of said appointee by a simple majority vote of the Student Senate. This position may not be filled by any of the afore mentioned Senators listed in Article IX, Section Two.

Two At-Large students shall be permanent, voting members of the Budget Allocation Committee. The Student Body shall have the power to elect two (2) at-large members of the Budget Allocation Committee. All candidates interested in running for one of the said positions must submit the appropriate nomination petition to the Elections and Polling Committee. These two positions cannot be applied for by the Student Senate President, Vice President, Treasurer, or Comptroller, nor the Treasurer of the Student Events Board.

One Club Leader shall be a permanent, voting member of the Budget Allocation Committee unless a conflict of interest arises in a particular budget request. He or she is to be nominated by any club leader to the HOC Chairperson.   The HOC will vote on the nominees per outline of the HOC Authority.   In the absence of a valid candidate, the position is to remain vacant.

The Student Events Board Treasurer shall serve as a permanent, voting member of the Budget Allocation Committee unless a conflict of interest arises in a particular budget request.

The Four Class Treasurers shall each be granted a permanent, voting position on the Budget Allocation Committee unless a conflict of interest arises in a particular budget request.

One Administrative Advisor shall be appointed upon their consent at the discretion of a simple majority vote of the Student Senate. The Administrative Advisor will not have a vote.

 Article XI – Special Requirements to Hold Office

Section One – All Offices

All candidates for an office must be a member of the constituency which that office represents. No student will be eligible for an office that intends to graduate before the completion of the full term of office.

Section Two – Executive Board

Only a person with junior or senior matriculated status in the fall after the election may be eligible to run for Student Senate President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer.

 Article XII – Removal from Office

Section One – Constitutional Officers: Voting members of the Senate, Executive Board, Class, Commuter Council, Budget Allocation Committee, elected members of SEB, SCRB, and the RHA

a)       Charges of impeachment must include egregious transgressions of one’s responsibilities of one’s office.

b)       Any voting member of the Student Senate may bring a charge of impeachment. Such a charge must detail alleged impeachable conduct and must be delivered in writing to the Chair of the SCRB in order for an impeachment hearing to be convened. False charges shall be grounds for impeachment.

c)       After a charge of impeachment is brought, a simple majority of Senate must vote for a charge of impeachment to move forward in the process.

d)       Following the impeachment of any constitutional officer, there shall be a hearing conducted by the SCRB, who will then make a recommendation to the Student Senate.

e)       The Student Senate will then hear the recommendation made by SCRB and vote as to the charges of impeachment. A 2/3 majority vote is necessary for expulsion from office.

Section Two – Appointed Student Representatives

Student representatives appointed by the Student Senate may be removed at the discretion of the Student Senate by a two-thirds majority vote of the entire Senate.

Section Three - Recall

The Student Body reserves the right to recall from office any member of the Student Senate or its subsidiary bodies. A recall petition, signed by not less than forty percent of those members’ constituents, shall be submitted to the Student Senate, which will prepare ballots. A special election must be held within ten class days of the submission of said petition. Only the constituents of the member in question may vote, with a two-thirds majority of the votes cast required to recall.

 Article XIII – Senate and Council Vacancies

Section One – President and Vice President

A vacancy in the office of President shall be succeeded by the Vice President. If the Vice President fills the vacancy in the office of President, he or she shall then appoint a new Vice President with full voting rights, subject to approval by a two-thirds majority vote of the entire Senate. .

Section Two – Other Officers

Vacancies in all other constitutional offices shall be filled by appointment by the respective President, subject to a two-thirds majority vote of the entire Senate. 

 Article XIV – Senate By-laws

By-laws shall be amended to this Constitution and enforced under it.

 Article XV – Amending the Constitution

Section One - Amendments

Additions or modifications to this Constitution shall be appended to it and enforced under it.

Section Two – Originating in the Senate

A proposed amendment may originate in the Student Senate. Approval by a two-thirds majority vote of the entire Senate shall cause the proposed amendment to be submitted to the Student Body. A special election for the entire Student Body must then be held within ten class days. Approval by a two-thirds majority of the voting Student Body is necessary for the proposed amendment to take effect as part of this Constitution.

Section Three – Originating in the Student Body

A proposed amendment may originate in the Student Body through an initiative petition. The initiative petition, containing the full text of the proposal and signatures of not less then twenty-five percent of the entire Student Body shall be submitted to the Senate. A special election must be held within ten class days of the submission of said petition to the Senate and must be passed by a two-thirds majority of the voting Student Body.

 Article XVI – Implementation

Section One – Ratification and Adoption

Following approval by a two-thirds majority vote of the entire Senate, and two-thirds of the voting Student Body, this Constitution shall be declared adopted.

Section Two – Effective Date

This Constitution, having been adopted, shall take effect by January 1, 2009 and shall supersede any and all previous Student Body Constitutions. 

Done in convention by the Constitutional Review Committee

and forwarded to the Senate on April 27, 2010: