CHARTER OF THE UNIVERSITY OF NORTH TEXAS REVIEW COMMITTEE
ARTICLE I. Relationship to Existing University Structures
Section 1. The URC shall exist independently from the Faculty Senate, the University Tenure Committee and any other committees of the university.
Section 2. The URC shall be responsible for its recommendations to the administration of the university and to the faculty as a whole, serving as an intermediary between the central administration and any faculty appellant who has been unable to resolve a grievance within the administrative structure of his or her department/division and/or college or school.
Section 3. The URC recognizes the priority of departmental/divisional committees in making personnel recommendations. Although committees of professional peers can best judge the professional competence of individuals, such committees are not infallible and may, on occasion, not limit themselves to or accurately emphasize professional competence or follow due process. Because a university-wide committee should be able to view personnel cases in a more disinterested manner than faculty who are a part of the department/division, the URC will review cases appealed to it in order to determine whether or not elements such as political and/or personality considerations have intruded.
ARTICLE II. Jurisdiction of the URC
Section 1. The URC shall review cases that are appealed to it on matters in which the faculty has primary responsibility for making judgments, such as salary, peer evaluation, promotion and other matters concerning fairness (excepting tenure and academic freedom). Any party seeking redress of a grievance shall first take the grievance to his or her department/divisional grievance committee. If no such committee exists or if the matter cannot be satisfactorily resolved, the faculty member should then seek redress with his or her college/school grievance or review committee. If the grievance cannot be resolved within 90 days of the initiation of an appeal, then the grievance may be taken directly to the URC. The URC will report its judgment to the provost and vice president for academic affairs. In most cases, the judgment of the URC will be binding and will be implemented by the provost and vice president for academic affairs. In those rare instances where the provost and vice president for academic affairs disagrees with the URC judgment, he or she will provide the committee and the president with a written response within two weeks stating in detail his or her position on the matter. The president will review the judgment of both and will make the final decision on the matter within one month of receipt by the provost and vice president for academic affairs of the judgment of the committee.
Section 2. The authority of the URC to make judgments shall extend to matters of both procedure and equity. In addition to giving judgment as indicated in Section 1 above, the URC shall notify the provost and vice president for academic affairs of noncompliance with existing university regulations as they apply to the faculty and request that he or she take appropriate action.
Section 3. If, in the course of its deliberations, the URC determines that existing university regulations concerning salary, peer evaluations, promotion or other matters affecting faculty morale, performance and welfare are either harmful or deficient, it shall recommend corrections or additions to such regulations to the provost and vice president for academic affairs, who shall respond in writing to such recommendations within one month of their receipt.
ARTICLE III. Committee Membership
Section 1. The URC shall be composed of a maximum of 13 members.
Section 2. One member shall be elected by and from the faculty of each of the Faculty Senate voting groups.
Section 3. Five members shall be elected by and from the faculty at large.
ARTICLE IV. Terms, Qualifications and Elections
Section 1. The term of office for each URC member shall be three years with one-third of the committee being elected each year. Members may serve no more than two full terms in succession.
Section 2. Committee members shall have full-time, tenured faculty status at UNT (excluding administrators at the division/department chair and above).
Section 3. A vacancy shall be declared if a committee member resigns or must be absent from the university for more than three months. If more than three months remain in a vacant position, it shall be filled by special election. Such a specially-elected member shall serve the remainder of the term and shall be eligible for re-election.
Section 4. Qualifications for voting in the elections for committee members shall be full-time faculty status.
Section 5. Elections shall be conducted annually by the Faculty Senate on behalf of the URC to replace members whose terms are expiring. The elections for members at large shall be held immediately after the election of Faculty Senate voting group representatives. New members shall usually take office at the start of the Fall semester.
ARTICLE V. Officers
Section 1. Officers are to be elected annually at the URC’s first Fall meeting following the election of new members.
Section 2. The URC shall elect a chair, who shall preside at the meetings of the committee and assume such other duties as are assigned by the committee.
Section 3. The URC shall elect a vice chair, who shall preside in the absence of the chair and assume such other duties as are assigned by the committee.
Section 4. The URC shall elect a secretary, who shall keep minutes and accurate records of the URC meetings and perform such other duties as are appropriate to the office.
Section 5. The officers shall constitute the Executive Committee of the URC.
ARTICLE VI. Meetings and Procedures
Section 1. The URC shall hold meetings in October, March, May, and at other times as required to fulfill its charge.
Section 2. Meetings of the URC shall be called by the chair, who must call a meeting within two weeks when petitioned to do so by four members of the committee.
Section 3. Seven members of the URC must ratify any decisions reached by the committee.
Section 4. The minutes of every meeting of the URC shall be distributed to the president, the provost and vice president for academic affairs, and the academic deans by the secretary. It also shall be the responsibility of the secretary to file the minutes in the Reserve Book Room of the University Library and shall be available to any member of the UNT faculty upon request. Minutes related to cases, findings and recommendations shall afford anonymity to the appellant and all principals.
Section 5. The URC shall promulgate specific hearing procedures prior to the hearing of any case and shall distribute these procedures to both parties well in advance of the hearing.
Section 6. All documentation concerning each case shall be assembled by the chair of the URC and kept confidential in permanent files in the Senate Office.
Section 7. An annual summary report of the activities of the URC shall be presented to the Faculty Senate and distributed to the entire UNT faculty prior to the May meeting of the committee.
ARTICLE VII. Amendments
Section 1. The charter of the URC may be amended in either of the following ways:
a. Initiation by a majority of the full URC, followed by ratification of two-thirds of all members voting.
b. Initiation by petition of 25 percent of the URC members calling for a special meeting. Upon verification of the petition, the chair of the URC must call a special meeting within two weeks from the receipt of the petition. If a majority of the full committee favors the amendment, it shall be initiated. Ratification shall be by two-thirds of members voting.
Section 2. Amendments become effective when approved by the president and adopted by the Board of Regents of the University of North Texas.
Section 3. Additions or amendments to the bylaws shall be initiated by a first reading at any meeting of the URC and shall be ratified by a simple majority of the committee members attending the next meeting. Such additions and amendments to the bylaws shall be published in the minutes and distributed to the entire faculty.
ARTICLE VIII. Enacting this Charter
Section 1. This charter becomes effective when adopted by a two-thirds majority of the faculty voting in a ratification election, approved by the president, and adopted by the Board of Regents of the University of North Texas.