1.  Purpose of the Senate

The purpose of the Senate shall be to fulfill the Association's stated objectives and purposes. The Senate shall be advisory to the President of the University or other groups as deemed appropriate.

2.  Composition of the Senate

  1. The Staff Senate is a representative group of the Staff Association.
  2. The Senate will be comprised of members representing the various employee classification numbers (broadbands) as follows: 1000, 2000 who are not members of faculty association, 3000, 4000, 5000, 6000, and 7000. Total membership of the Senate is based on 5% of the Staff Association. Broadband categories 1000-3000 will have a combined Senate membership that represents approximately 5% of their members; Broadband categories 4000-5000 will have a combined Senate membership that represents approximately 5% of their members; and Broadband categories 6000-7000 will have a combined Senate membership that represents approximately 5% of their members. Membership representation will be reviewed annually.
  3. Election of representatives to the Staff Senate will be by two separate written ballots from each classification. Staff may only vote within their respective classification.
  • Ballot 1: will ask for nominations.Nominees will be contacted before placing name on the ballot.
  • Ballot 2: will be the voting ballot. A nominee with simple majority of votes will be elected.
  • In case of a tie, an additional ballot will be issued with those names on it

        4. Staff Officers are elected from the membership of the Senate. (see Election of Officers)

        5. The Staff Officers will consist of: President, Vice President, immediate Past President, Secretary, and       Treasurer.

        6. The Director of Human Resources or the Director's designated representative shall serve in an ex-officio capacity on the Staff Association, Staff Senate and Staff Officers.

3.  Terms of Senate Members

  1. Senate membership shall be for a two (2) year term with approximately one-half of the members selected each April. A member may not serve more than two (2) consecutive full terms. (Refer to 4.c below)
  2. Terms of senators begin in May and filled annually, thereafter.
  3. Ex-officio officers appointed to the Staff Senate are not eligible to vote.
  4. If a senate member has served two (2) consecutive full terms, their names will be absent from the voting ballot for a period of one year.

4.  Election of Officers

  1. At the regular May meeting Staff Senate nominations and voting for the Staff Officers shall be accepted through motions from within the Staff Senate according to Roberts Rules of Order.
  2. The Staff Senate will nominate and vote annually in May for the following officers:
  • Vice President (President-Elect)
  • Secretary
  • Treasurer

        3. The Secretary and Treasurer will hold a renewable one-year term in office. The Vice President, President and Past President will hold a non-renewable one-year term in office.

       4. The senator elected as Vice President will assume the office of President and then immediate Past President. After being elected to Vice President, this senator may be granted an additional two (2) year term on the Staff Senate, if required, to complete the terms of President and immediate Past President. 

      5. The immediate Past President cannot concurrently hold another office

      6. The Staff Officers can declare an office vacant when an officer is unable or does not properly perform the duties of the office, e.g. does not attend meetings or fulfill duties described for that office. A vacant position of the Staff Officers shall be filled by a special election following the vacancy.

     7. Winners will be decided by a majority vote.  The President shall cast the deciding vote in the case of a tie.

5. Duties of the Officers

  1. The President:
  • 1) presides over all meetings of the Staff Association, Staff Senate and Staff Officers.
  • 2) ensures that all Staff Association and Senate activities are conducted in a professional manner and recorded in a digital format accessible to all Association and Senate members.
  • 3) distributes the agenda to all staff members one week prior to each respective meeting aforementioned. 
  • 4) has the authority to appoint such committees as are deemed necessary for the business of the Staff Association and Senate.
  • 5) ensures that all actions conform to the Staff Association Constitution and Bylaws.
  • 6) serves ex-officio on all committees of the Staff Association and Senate.
  • 7) serves as the direct communication liaison between the President of the University and the Staff Association.
  • 8) may disburse monies from the Operating Expense Fund in the absence of the Treasurer.
  • 9) will serve as a representative to the North Dakota Staff Senate.

      2.  The Vice President (President-Elect):

  • 1) presides in the absence of the President.
  • 2) assumes the duties of the President for the non-expired term in the event the President is unable to complete the term of office.
  • 3) maintains current election results and contacts eligible Senators following a vacancy in Staff Senate membership.
  • 4) carries out additional duties as assigned by the President.
  • 5) will serve as a representative to the North Dakota Staff Senate.

       3. The Immediate Past President:

  • 1) serves as an active member of the Staff Officers providing continuity in the administration of the Staff Association and Senate.
  • 2) serves as an advisor to current and proposed activities, using previous Staff Officers' experience to give a historical perspective.
  • 5) will serve as an alternate representative to the North Dakota Staff Senate.

       3. The Secretary

  • 1) takes and maintains minutes of each meeting of the Staff Association, Staff Senate and Staff Officers.
  • 2) publishes and distributes the minutes of each Staff Senate/Association meeting to all members prior to the next monthly meeting.
  • 3) maintains an accurate record of all resolutions duly adopted and the vote on such resolutions.
  • 4) maintains a roll of current members and their attendance at meetings.
  • 5) maintains permanent records of Senators and terms served.
  • 6) receives and keeps all communications and reports to and from the Staff Association. (8) maintains copies of the minutes of the Staff Association, Staff Senate and Staff Officers
  • 7) and special reports, and posts copies of the above online for all staff to access, and assures that duplicate copies are passed on to the succeeding secretary.
  • 8) will serve as an alternate representative to the North Dakota Staff Senate.
  • 9) schedules meeting locations for the Staff Association, and Staff Senate for the following year; and notifies the Staff Senate.

       4. The Treasurer

  • 1) is primarily responsible for the Staff Association's fiscal affairs.
  • 2) will serve as an alternate representative to the North Dakota Staff Senate.

3)      Staff Officers:

The Staff Officers collectively shall:

  • 1) serve as the governing board or steering committee of the Staff Senate/Association.
  • 2) set the yearly calendar of Staff Association/Senate meetings and activities.
  • 3) prepare the agenda for each meeting of the Staff Association and Senate.
  • 4) insure that the Constitution and Bylaws are followed and reviewed annually.
  • 5) receive proposals for consideration at Staff Senate/Association meetings.
  • 6) approve disbursement of funds when required.

6.  Committees and Task Forces

The following is a list of committees and a brief description of their duties:

  1. Staff Association Committees - The Staff Senate shall establish such committees as are necessary to conduct Staff Association and Senate business. Some committees shall be responsible to the Staff Senate and shall perform duties determined by the Staff Senate and/or the Staff Officers. All members are eligible to serve on any Staff Association committee(s).
  2. Bylaws Committee - reviews and suggests amendments to the Bylaws and presents them to the Staff Senate and then to the Staff Association.  The Bylaws Committee may change annually and is determined by senators volunteering to review the Bylaws prior to the Spring Staff Association meeting.
  3. Staff Recognition Committee - develops and administers programs to recognize and reward staff for their service to MSU.  Examples include Comet Kudos awards and the Orville Johnson Meritorious Service award.
  4. Staff Professional Development Committee - plans programs and activities that will provide personal and professional growth opportunities for University staff.  In identifying programs, the committee will assess the needs and wants of staff through questionnaires and surveys.  The committee investigates topics and speakers for Staff Association and Senate meetings and forwards their recommendations to the Staff Officers for consideration.  An example would be the monthly Staff Strategies for training sessions.
  5. Public Relations Committee - publicize the activities of Staff Senate and assist in opening channels of communications among all staff members.  For example, sending out a monthly newsletter to all staff members with updates.
  6. Event Planning/Fundraising Committee- responsible for planning events and fundraising opportunities.  Examples include Comet Pride buttons, potlucks, holiday events/celebrations, etc.
  7. Task Force and Temporary University Committees - The Staff Senate President will, with input from Staff Senate, appoint Staff Association members to serve on University task forces and temporary University committees, as requested.

7. Transfer of Job Category

Senate members who transfer from one job category to another within the University will continue to represent their original category until the next scheduled general election. (Item 2b, page 1)

8.  Attendance/Absenteeism

Senators are expected to attend all Staff Senate meetings. A Senator shall contact the Secretary/Treasurer to record their absence from any Staff Senate meeting. A Senator who has three (3) unrecorded absences in any twelve (12) month period or fraction thereof, will be contacted by the Staff Senate President, and may be vacated by a vote of the Staff Officers. Attendance will be taken at each Staff Senate meeting.  For extended approved absences (e.g. military leave), the position will be temporarily filled following the procedures under Interim Vacancies.

9. Interim Vacancies of Staff Senate

The vacancy will be filled by special election for the completion of the unexpired term or until the return of the person on extended leave.

10. Meetings and Actions

The Staff Association shall meet in regular sessions - Fall and Spring of each year. The Senate shall meet monthly. A majority of the Senate members eligible to vote shall constitute a quorum for a meeting. In the conduct of the meetings, Robert's Rules of Order shall prevail, unless superseded by the Bylaws of the Mayville State University Staff Association.

  1. Special meetings can be called by the Staff Officers when deemed necessary.
  2. All meetings shall be open.
  3. A record of proceedings at meetings shall be kept and made available by the secretary.
  4. Association members may propose items to be included on the agenda for the next Association/Senate meeting by speaking to a senator.

11. Amendments to the Bylaws

Amendments to these bylaws may be proposed by a motion at any regular meeting of the Senate. The proposed amendment to the Bylaws will be introduced at an Association meeting and/or by written notice.  It will be voted on at the next meeting or by a written ballot. If approved by a majority vote of the Staff Association, the proposed amendment will be submitted to the President of the University for approval.

12. Dissolution

Upon dissolution of the organization, all assets remaining, after payment of all costs and expenses of such dissolution, shall be turned over to the President of the University.


Adopted - April 12, 1996

Amended August 23,2002

Amended April 26, 2012

Amended September 23, 2014

Amended May 7, 2015

Amended July 2, 2019

Amended June 24, 2020