Council By-Laws as Amended January 2013
The BNL Council (Council) is a body elected by the scientific staff
that advises and makes recommendations to the Director about Laboratory
policies affecting the scientific staff. The Council is particularly
concerned with the maintenance of an atmosphere conducive to excellence
in scientific research at BNL. The Council reports to the Director.
The Council currently consists of 17 members elected from the tenured
scientific staff and apportioned as indicated among the following
- Biosciences Department 2
- Collider-Accelerator Department / Superconducting Magnet Division
- Chemistry Department 2
- Nuclear Science and Technology Department /
Nonproliferation and National Security Department /
Sustainable Energy Technologies Department /
Environmental Sciences Department / Computational
Science Center 3
- Photon Sciences 2
- Condensed Matter Physics and Materials Science Department / Center for
functional Nanomaterials 2
- Physics Department / Instrumentation Division
The term of membership is three years. A retiring member who has
served a full term cannot be reelected at the time of retirement. New
members normally begin service at the March meeting of the
Adjustments in Representation
The Council shall from time to time review the representation of the
several Departments and Divisions based on the number of scientific
staff in various categories and may vote to adjust the number of members
from each organization unit accordingly.
Increase in the Representation of a Department/Division
In the event that The Council increases the representation of a
Department/Division, said increase shall become effective at the
beginning of the next Council year (March Meeting).
The new member shall have a regular term of three years.
The election of the new member shall be supervised by the member or
members of the Council from the corresponding department under the same
rules as apply for the regular election of Council Members.
Decrease in the Representation of a Department/Division
In the event that The Council decreases the representation of a
Department/Division, said decrease shall become effective with the first
departure from the Council of a member representing said
Department/Division. Said departure can be either by completion of the
regular term of a member or by resignation, but resignation of a member
is not required by a decrease in representation.
1. Provides advice and makes recommendations to the Director on
scientific staff policies.
2. Conducts reviews and makes recommendations
to the Director concerning candidates that have been put forward for
tenure by the Departments and Divisions of the Laboratory.
hearing and provides recommendations to the Director prior to any
involuntary termination of a tenured appointment. The Council will vote
on the recommendation and record the vote.
4. Shall be represented on a
committee appointed by the Director prior to any termination of a
continuing or term appointment for cause.
5. Shall be consulted prior to
any termination of a continuing appointment for reasons of financial
exigency or major program change.
6. Shall be consulted prior to any
termination of a term appointment for reasons of financial exigency.
Shall be represented by the Council Chair or his/her designee, on any
Committee that is established to conduct a formal investigation into
allegations of misconduct in research or scholarship.
8. Provides an
avenue for additional issues to be examined at the request of the
Laboratory Director, or individual Council members who act as a conduit
for the scientific staff of their respective departments.
Rules for regular elections are as follows:
1. Nominations and elections for each Department/Division shall be
conducted and supervised by the retiring member of the
Department/Division or, if the retiring member is not available, a
substitute designated by the Chair of the Council.
2. A period of at
least two weeks shall be allowed between the call for nominations, and
3. Membership on the Council is limited to the tenure staff,
including joint appointees who have been granted tenure by their
home institution, but normally not Assistant or Associate Department Chairs. Department
Chairs or Deputy Department Chairs at BNL may not sit on the Council.
shall be elected by a majority of votes cast in a secret ballot by the
scientific staff (Assistant Scientist and above) of the represented
group. In the event of a tie, the tie shall be broken by the Department
Chair or in the absence of the Department Chair, by the Acting Chair.
The retiring member or substitute shall certify the results to the
Chairman of the Council prior to the March meeting of the Council.
A requirement of Council membership is regular participation in the
monthly meetings of the Council. A Council member who is to be absent
for a continuous period of longer than six months shall resign. A
Council member who has been absent from more than six of the previous
twelve monthly meetings shall forfeit membership in the Council.
Exceptions to the forfeiture of membership may be approved by the
majority vote of the Council members upon a written request by the
Council Chairman. A special election shall be held within one month to
replace any departing member for the balance of the unexpired term. If
the unexpired term is six months or less, the newly elected member shall
automatically succeed to the next three-year term. If the unexpired term
is more than six months the member may be reelected for a full term.
Rules for regular elections shall apply to special elections.
The Council shall have two officers, a Chairman and a Secretary.
Candidates for the office of Chairman may be proposed by any member of
the Council in writing to the Secretary during the interval between the
December and January meetings. The Secretary prepares a slate of such
candidates for submission at the January meeting. The Chairman is
elected at the February meeting by secret ballot. Election requires a
majority of votes of the members present. The Chairman is responsible
for the conduct of the meetings, the preparation of the Agenda, the
calling of special meetings, the appointment of subcommittees, and the
transmittal of formal reports and recommendations.
The Secretary is a member of the Council and is appointed by the newly
elected Chairman to serve for the same period as the Chairman. The
Secretary replaces the Chairman when absent and appoints a Secretary pro
tempore. The Secretary is responsible for records of Council membership,
for minutes of meetings, and for notices of meetings which must be in
writing. The minutes of each Council meeting will be sent also to the
Director, and the Office of Scientific Personnel, the permanent
repository of Council records.
Replacement of Council Chair
If during the course of the Council year, the position of Chair
becomes vacant by to the resignation of incapacity of the incumbent, the
Secretary shall serve as Interim Chair pending election of a new Chair.
An election for a new Chair shall be held at the first regular meeting
of the Council that takes place after the position of Chair becomes
vacant. Nominations for the Chair shall be solicited from all members of
the Council by the interim Chair, and, if practical, all members shall
be informed of the list of nominees before the meeting at which the new
Chair is to be elected. A person thus elected shall serve until the end
of the Council year, but may stand for reelection.
Advisors may participate in Council deliberations and be appointed to
Council committees by invitation of the Chairman. The names of advisors
will, when possible, be listed on the Agenda of the meeting.
Regular meetings of the Council shall be held at 10:00 a.m. on the
second Monday of each month of the year, except that they may be changed
to another Monday of the same month by a majority vote of members at the
immediately preceding meeting.
A majority of the Council constitutes a quorum at a regular meeting.
A majority vote of the members present is required to carry a motion.
Proxy and absentee ballots shall not be accepted in voting upon
recommendations on tenure cases. Council members who participate in a
meeting through a teleconference and take part in the discussions are
considered to be present for quorum and voting purposes. Any of the procedures contained in
these By-Laws may be suspended for a regular meeting by an affirmative
vote of two-thirds of the membership of the Council, whether present or
voting by proxy or absentee ballot.
Special meetings may be called by the Chairman or upon written
petition to the Secretary by three members of the Council.
A majority of the Council constitutes a quorum at a special meeting.
At special meetings, affirmative votes of a majority of the Council
membership, whether present or voting by proxy or absentee ballot, are
required to carry a motion. Proxy and absentee ballots shall not be
accepted in voting upon recommendation on tenure cases. Council members
who participate in a meeting through a teleconference and take part in
the discussions are considered to be present for quorum and voting
purposes. Any of the
procedures contained in these By-Laws may be suspended for a special
meeting by an affirmative vote of two-thirds of the membership of the
Council, whether present or voting by proxy or absentee ballot.
Amendments to By-Laws
These By-Laws may be changed by meeting the following requirements:
1. Each Council member must receive a written notice of the proposed
change at or before the regular meeting immediately preceding the
regular meeting at which the proposed changes are to be voted upon.
The proposed change as it appears in the minutes of a previous meeting
must be approved by affirmative votes of two-thirds of the membership of
the Council, whether present or voting by proxy or absentee ballot.
Last Modified: March 13, 2013
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