Susan C. Weidel
Old Main, Room 204
1000 E. University Ave.
Laramie, WY 82071
Phone: (307) 766-4997
Fax: (307) 766-2993
University Regulatory Structure
A New Framework
-- Support Services Plan II 2005-2010 contains Task 25 which proposes that the Office of General Counsel develop a more cohesive framework for and recodify the University regulatory structure.
-- There are a number of reasons to create a new University regulatory structure. The following are illustrative, but not an exhaustive list:
- Given the current structure, one may have to read several regulations, along with Information Circulars, and "interpret" them to determine what UW's policy is. There are obviously some potential legal ramifications to this situation, but of greater importance, is that students, faculty, and staff have a more difficult time than they should in understanding UW policy.
- There is not a clear delineation of what should be in Trustee regulations as opposed to UniRegs. Some Trustee regulations are every bit as detailed as UniRegs. And in some cases, UniRegs simply repeat the Trustee regulationss but include administrative details.
- The current UniReg structure assumes that each campus division is responsible for "its" UniRegs, and the President is empowered to review and approve or reject the rules. That approach does not promote a coordinated regulatory structure for University governance.
- The current UniReg system requires that an interpretation of an existing Trustees Regulation must be made to determine when a UniReg should be brought to the Trustees for consideration.
- There are also several Trustees policies that exist only because the affected units happen to remember a Trustees meeting, sometimes decades ago, when a policy decision was made. The units refer to these "policies" when bringing matters to the Trustees, but there is no systematic collection of these policies. There is no way for Trustees to identify that they exist until affected matters arise at a Trustees meeting, and consideration of such matters may occur very infrequently. Examples include the policy for retention and disposal of real property and the policy on capital construction contract change orders.
- Several University regulations and Information Circulars are obsolete and archaic.
- The format of University Regulations and Information Circulars promotes the inclusion of language that often makes the substance of the regulation less clear.
II. Current Regulatory Structure
- ByLaws of the Trustees authorize the Trustees to promulgate "Trustees Regulations" and there exists a host of substantive provisions in Trustee Regulations.
- Trustees Regulations authorize the promulgation of University Regulations, which in some cases require the approval of the Trustees, in some cases make the review by the Trustees optional, and in some cases do not require review by the Trustees.
- The format of University Regulations is specified in a University Regulation.
- University Regulations are indexed and numbered by the division that is "responsible" for administering the regulation. Clearly, administering regulations may involve multiple units.
- If a University Regulation is proposed by the Faculty Senate to the University President to be forwarded to the Trustees, and if the President declines to forward it for consideration, the Faculty Senate, by ¾'s vote, can have the proposed regulation presented to the Trustees for consideration.
- Information Circulars are communications of University-wide interest that may be promulgated by the University President, Vice Presidents, or the Director of Intercollegiate Athletics.
- Information Circulars are not substitutes for University Regulations, and the format of Information Circulars is specified by a University Regulation.
- There exist Trustee "policies" which are reflected in Board meeting minutes. These are not collected centrally.
III. Proposed new structure
- Trustee Regulations and University Regulations will be consolidated into a single set of regulations entitled "UW Regulations".
- UW Regulations will be numbered under a new system. The first number of the UW Regulation will be based upon subject matter and the second number will be its existing University Regulation number. This will retain the currently familiar numbering system, at least to some extent. For example, current UniReg 174 regarding staff employees will be numbered as UW Regulation 4-174, since "4" will be the set of regulations dealing with general employment provisions.
The following subject matter categories will be used in new numbering system:
1. University Governance and Structure
3. Business Practices
4. General Employment
5. Academic Personnel
6. Academic Policy
7. Regulations of Academic Units
- All known Trustee policies will be aggregated under a single UW Regulation.
- Information Circulars will be largely supplanted by "Presidential Directives". Presidential Directives, somewhat analogous to Executive Orders, are directives that the President can issue consistent with his authority under law and regulation, but are subordinate to UW Regulations.
- Presidential Directives will be numbered to in a similar manner to UW Regulations so as to retain current numbering to some extent. For example, the current Staff Classification/Compensation Plan is Information Circular 2007-1. It will be renumbered as 4-2007-1, since "4" is the set of regulations dealing with general employment provisions.
At its January 2008 meeting, the ByLaws Subcommittee of the Trustees voted to review a preliminary draft of the approach described herein.
For the purposes of the draft, all existing Trustee Regulations and University Regulations will be renumbered as UW Regulations, and the text of all those regulations will remain unchanged, with the following exceptions:
- Regulations dealing with the structure of regulations and Information Circulars will be rewritten. The existing authority of the Faculty Senate to propose rules to the Board of Trustees over the objection of the President will be retained.
- References to campus units will be modernized, e.g. the "Division of Administration" will be substituted for the "Division of Finance".
- For the purposes of the draft, Information Circulars will be designated as Presidential Directives.
Cross indexes will be prepared to show the disposition of existing regulations and Information Circulars and the source of the new UW Regulations and Presidential Directives.
If the Board approves the restructuring, the new structure will be implemented. Cross indexes with links to former and current rules will be available on the University's web site. Again, no substantive changes will be made to existing UW policy except with regard to those regulations that establish the current structure of Trustees regulations, University regulations, and Information Circulars.
Following implementation a process can be undertaken to systematically update the substance of regulations as necessary. That process would include the following:
-- Deletion of archaic provisions, e.g. UniReg 654 Water Research Center. That unit has not existed for nearly a decade.
-- Aggregation of multiple regulations and Presidential Directives to the extent practicable so that UW's policy in an area can be found in a single location.
-- Identification of regulations where substantive policy changes should be considered.
-- Charging appropriate campus personnel with developing proposed substantive changes and providing campus stakeholders the opportunity for input prior to presentation to the President and ultimately the Board.
- This new structure will not affect the work that campus units are performing to develop and propose substantive changes to regulations. Those can simply be inserted into the new numbering structure.