Senate of the Urbana-Champaign Campus

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Senate Election Rules for the Other Academic Staff ABC Electorate

1. Short Title; Purpose

1.1 Title.These Rules will be referred to as the Senate Election Rules for the Other Academic Staff Electorate Group ABC.

1.2 Purpose. The purpose of these Election Rules shall be to establish orderly procedures and rules for the election of senators from the Other Academic Staff electorate Group ABC to the Senate of the Urbana-Champaign campus.

2. Electorate Qualifications

2.1General Qualifications. The Constitution, Article III, Section 1, provides:

The Other Academic Staff electorate is composed of those members of the Other Academic Staff who are engaged in and responsible for the educational function of the University; ordinarily this will involve teaching and research. Specifically, the Other Academic Staff electorate shall consist of all persons of the campus non-visiting academic staff who have a full-time appointment, are paid by the University, are not candidates for a degree from this University, and who:

a. Hold the academic rank or title of professor, associate professor, or assistant professor modified by the terms “research,” “adjunct,” or “clinical;” or

b. Hold the academic rank or title of instructor or lecturer and are not included in the faculty electorate by designation of their voting unit; or

c. Hold the unmodified academic rank or title of teaching associate, research associate, or clinical associate; . . .

2.2 Time of Determining Status. Eligibility to vote, and membership in a particular department or college, will be determined by the person's status at the time the ballot is cast.

3.Election and Credential Committee

4.Election Unit

4.1 Election Unit. As per the Constitution, the Other Academic Staff electorate defined in Article III, Section 1a, b, c (Group ABC) is composed of all those members of the other academic staff who satisfy the qualifications in Section 2.  The group of those eligible comprises a single voting unit.  Each member of the electorate is entitled to cast one vote.

5. Time and Duration of Elections

5.1 Duration. The final election shall be held on seven calendar days, at a time starting as specified by USSP in the Timetable issued to the voting unit.

5.2 Time. Nominating elections and final elections shall be held at such times as shall be specified by the USSP.


6. Candidate Qualifications

6.1 General Qualifications. All persons included in the Other Academic Staff electorate Group ABC shall be eligible for election to the Senate, without distinction on the basis of rank or other criteria.

6.2 Single Seat Limitation. No person can be a candidate for more than one Senate seat.

6.3 Limited Terms. The terms of senators elected from the Other Academic Staff electorate Group ABC shall be two years, with a maximum of three consecutive terms. The election of an Other Academic Staff electorate Group ABC senator in a regular election constitutes a full term unless the senator resigns prior to the Organizational Meeting of the Senate. A replacement senator who is elected prior to January 1 of the first year of the term of a vacant seat shall be considered to have served a full term.

7. Notice of Election; Publicity

7.1 Requirement of Notice. The Clerk of the Senate shall distribute information concerning elections to members of the electorate.  Election information includes the location of the polling place for the voting unit, the hours during which the polls will be open, and the names of the candidates in the voting unit as well as the name of their department or equivalent unit designation.

7.2 Method of Notice. A recommended method of informing persons about the elections is a mailing via hardcopy or electronic means to the constituent members of the voting unit telling them which voting unit they are in, who the candidates in that unit are, and where and when they may vote.

7.3 Use of University Funds. No University funds shall be spent for production or distribution of any campaign statements.

7.4 Methods of Voting. The Notice of Election (Section 7), Publicity (Section 7), Nomination Process (Section 8) and Election Procedures (Section 9) are detailed as indicated.  These activities can be carried out either via hardcopy (requiring mail or hand delivery to the polling place as described below) or via electronic means.  Whichever method is used, there must be:  a) a reasonable time frame observed for the vote to occur, b) a confidentiality about voting and authentication, c) a stated process by which ties are resolved, and d) a reasonable retention period for the relevant records. 

8. Nomination Process

8.1 By Election. Nominations of Other Academic Staff Group ABC senators shall be by election in accordance with Article III, Section 4 of the Senate Constitution:

Those eligible to vote in each Other Academic Staff voting unit shall be notified that an election is to be held.  Any member of the Other Academic Staff electorate who desires to run for election from their electorate unit shall submit a statement to that effect and a short biography to the appropriate Other Academic Staff voting unit elections and credentials committee.  The nominee receiving the highest number of votes shall be deemed elected.

During the nomination process, the number of nominations that can go forward for the election is a maximum of two, as one at-large seat will be elected by those described in these Election Rules.  If more than two names are placed in nomination, a nomination election must be held.

8.2 Casting Ballots. Ballots shall be cast in person or returned by mail to the Clerk of the Senate or via electronic means approved by USSP.

8.3 Time of Balloting. Completed nominating ballots must be received in the Senate Office no later than 5:00 p.m. on the seventh day (inclusive) following the day upon which the ballots are first made available to Other Academic Staff Group ABC members.

8.4 Nominating Ballots.

(a.) Willingness to Serve. The Clerk of the Senate shall send an announcement to all those eligible to vote that an election is to be held.  Any member of the Other Academic Staff Group ABC electorate who desires to run for election from their electorate unit shall submit a statement to that effect and a short biography to the Clerk of the Senate.

(b.) Preparation of Ballots. Nominating ballots shall be prepared and distributed by the Clerk of the Senate, and shall conform as nearly as possible to the model ballot issued by the USSP.

(c.) Contents. Ballots shall contain

(1.) the names, unit designation, and a short biography of all those who have fulfilled the requirements in section 8.4(a), and

(2.) directions concerning how each ballot is to be marked, and where and when the ballot must be returned.

(d.) Order of Names. Names of eligible Other Academic Staff Group ABC members may be placed on the ballot in alphabetical order or any other reasonable order.

8.5 Notice. The Clerk of the Senate is responsible for notifying the winning nominees and shall forward a list of those nominees, their email address, and their campus address to the USSP chair.

9. Election Procedures

9.1 Ballot Contents. The names on the final election ballot shall be a maximum of two and a minimum of one as only one seat is up for election.

9.2 Order of Names. Names of candidates shall be placed on the election ballot in random order.

9.3 Withdrawal. Before the election ballot is prepared, any Other Academic Staff Group ABC member who has received nominating votes may withdraw by delivering a signed notice of withdrawal to the Clerk of the Senate.

9.5 Conducting the Polling.

(a.) Location of Polling Places. Ballots shall be available at the Senate Office or via electronic means for seven calendar days.

(b.) Signature of Voter. Before voting, each member of the electorate shall sign opposite their name on the official electorate list of that voting unit or if using an electronic voting system, have a way to ensure only those eligible to vote can participate and that those eligible to vote can vote only once.  Confidentiality of all votes must be ensured at all times.  If the voting procedure links any identification with votes cast, this information must not be referenced during the tallying of the votes nor saved with the election results.

(c.) Official Electorate List. An official listing of the Other Academic Staff Group ABC electorate shall be kept in the Senate Office, and shall be marked to show each member who has voted. This listing shall be kept on file and made available upon request.

9.6 Election Supervision. The Clerk of the Senate shall be responsible for ensuring that the Other Academic Staff Group ABC election is carried on in accordance with these Rules.

9.7 Requirements for Election.

(a.) Automatic Election. If the number of Other Academic Staff Group ABC members nominated and willing to serve is one an election need not be held; that person, nominated and willing to serve, may be declared automatically elected.

(b.) Plurality Required. The nominee receiving the highest number of votes in the final election shall be deemed elected.

(c.) Ties in the Final Election. Ties in the final election will be resolved by a coin flip by the Clerk of the Senate.

9.8 Returns; Counting; Certification.

(a.) Removal of Ballots from Boxes. If hardcopy methods are used, ballots may be removed from the ballot box only at the end of the voting period or when the box is filled to capacity. Ballots shall be removed from the ballot box only by an election official. Ballots shall be transferred immediately to some sealed container, such as a paper bag or envelope. The sealed container shall be signed by the election officer who transferred the ballots. The sealed container also shall be marked with information showing the date and time of the ballot transfer, the number of ballots transferred (to be determined by reference to the signature sheet), and the election unit in which the ballots are cast. The sealed container shall be stored in a safe place.  If electronic means are used, the report of the election shall be obtained at the end of the voting period and the file stored in a safe place.

(b.) Counting. The Clerk of the Senate shall provide for the counting of the ballots immediately following the deadline for casting ballots. No interested party shall participate in the counting process. If hardcopy methods are used, any member of the Other Academic Staff Group ABC electorate may be present during the counting process within reasonable limits of space. The results of the count shall be entered on a tally sheet signed by those who counted the ballots. If electronic means are used, there shall be a process by which the results can be certified if challenged.

(c.) Write-in Ballots. No write-in ballots are to be counted.

(d.) Doubtful Ballots. Intention of the voter shall be the only standard for interpreting doubtful ballots. If the intention can be determined, the ballot shall be counted in accordance with the intent. If the intention cannot be determined (e.g., three candidates marked for only two seats), then the ballot shall not be counted.

(e.) Certification by USSP. If hardcopy methods are used, the tally sheet and all ballots shall be delivered or made available immediately to the USSP.  If electronic means are used, the report of the election shall be obtained at the end of the voting period and the file stored in a safe place.  The USSP, after satisfying itself that the vote shown on the tally sheet is correct, shall so certify by signing certification cards provided by the Senate Office, and shall deliver the cards immediately to the Senate Office. The Senate Office shall arrange for the preservation of all ballots, tally sheets, or electronic files for a period of six months.

10. Election Certification by Senate Committee
The USSP shall certify election results to the Senate at the organizational meeting of the newly elected Senate. These results shall be entered in the minutes of that meeting. The USSP may delay certification of candidates whose elections are in doubt or may certify the election of such candidates upon appropriate conditions.

11. Formal Reports
All reports from USSP shall be addressed to the Senate Clerk.

12. Absentee Ballots – Applicable only if hardcopy methods are used.

12.1 Identification Statement. If using hardcopy methods, each absentee voter shall be required to sign and return an identification form (prepared by the department), in lieu of signing the voter list as required of voters on campus.

12.2 By Request Only. An absentee ballot can be obtained only by requesting it from the administrative office of the voting unit.

12.3 Time Limit. To be valid an absentee ballot must be received no later than 5:00 p.m. of the last day of the election in the administrative office of the voting unit.

12.4 Mailing. Absentee ballots must be mailed early enough to allow ample time for their return before the deadline.

13. Grievances and Appeals

13.1 USSP Jurisdiction. USSP shall have original jurisdiction over the following:

(a.) addition of names of qualified voters to the electorate lists;

(b.) certification of successful election of candidates.

13.2 Appeal to Senate Executive Committee (SEC) Any aggrieved person may appeal a decision to the Senate Executive Committee, and actions and decisions of the SEC may be appealed to the Senate by any senator.

13.3 Procedure for Unlisted Persons Claiming Electorate Status. If any Other Academic Staff Group ABC member whose name does not appear on the official listing desires to vote and claims entitlement to do so, the validity of that claim shall be decided by the chair of USSP before termination of the voting period. If the claim cannot be so decided, the member shall be provided a ballot after signing a statement that he/she is a qualified member of the electorate. The voter's signed statement and vote shall be kept separate and shall not be counted with the other votes; they shall be delivered to the USSP at the same time as the other ballots and the tally sheets are delivered. The USSP will decide whether the member is or is not entitled to vote. If the person is so entitled, the chair of USSP will add that vote to the tally sheet.

14. Resignations and Vacancies

14.1 No Nominations. If no person is nominated for a Senate seat during the general election, then the Other Academic Staff Group ABC electorate shall have the option of electing an eligible member of the electorate to that seat in the fall. Election procedures shall be developed by USSP.

14.2 Disqualification from Electorate. If a senator fails to satisfy the requirements for membership in the electorate during their term of office, the Senate shall determine whether the senator may remain seated.

14.3 Review of Status. The Clerk of the Senate will review official records each semester, and will report to the USSP the names of all those senators no longer in the employ of the University.

14.4 Vacancies. Vacancies shall be filled by election of a member of the voting unit for the remainder of the vacant term in accordance with the nomination and election procedures prescribed in Article III of the Senate Constitution.