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Constitution

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The RHA constitution is available for download through the following links: PDF version

The Community Council Governing Statements are available for download through the following links: PDF version

(Note: Not all Community Councils use this set of Governing Statements. Contact Community Council Presidents for most current Governing Statements)

Contents

Preamble

We, as residents of the on-campus residential communities at Louisiana State University and A&M College at Baton Rouge, in order to provide on-campus residents with appropriate student representation and self-government and to promote residential communities that foster academic, cultural, political, social, civic, and leadership interests of the on-campus students, do hereby establish this, the Constitution of the Residence Hall Association.

Article I: Organization Name

The organizational name will be: Louisiana State University and A&M College at Baton Rouge, hereafter LSU, Residence Hall Association, hereafter RHA.

Article II: Purpose

The purpose of RHA is to represent and serve on-campus residents by: providing academic, cultural, political, social, civic, and leadership development for all residents within on-campus residential communities; serving as a voice regarding policy and procedures in the residence halls; acting as a liaison between on-campus residents and internal/external campus entities; exchanging ideas and information at local, regional, and national conferences; programming to a variety of student needs; providing funding for developmental initiatives within the residential communities; and serving as the parent organization of the individual Community Councils. Any other goals, not listed above, that are in accordance with this constitution, may also be pursued.

Article III: Basic Policies

The following are basic policies of RHA:

  1. RHA will be non-commercial.
  2. RHA’s name or the names of any members in their official capacities will not be used in connection with a commercial concern.
  3. RHA will cooperate with Louisiana State University to support the improvement of education in ways that will not interfere with administration of the University.
  4. RHA may cooperate with other organizations and agencies, but persons representing RHA in such matters will make no commitments that bind the organization.
  5. RHA agrees to abide by all University polices and local, state and federal laws.

Article IV: Membership

  1. Any individual who subscribes to the purpose and basic policies of RHA may become a member of this organization, subject only to compliance with the provisions of this Constitution.
  2. Active membership is restricted to LSU students residing on campus in residential communities excluding married and graduate housing and fraternity and sorority houses. Associate membership is restricted to LSU faculty and staff, LSU students who reside off campus, residents in married or graduate housing, and/or residents of fraternity and sorority houses. Associate members are non-voting members.
  3. The Department of Residential Life will provide the annual RHA budget from the department’s programming budget line. RHA’s fiscal year will run from July 1 to June 30. The Department of Residential Life will disseminate each annual RHA budget after consideration of a budget request submitted by the RHA Executive Staff during the previous spring semester. The incoming Executive Staff may alter budget line items at its discretion by a simple two-thirds vote; however, they cannot change the total budget amount. Should the Department of Residential Life change its budget request processes, a congruent amendment to this section is necessary
  4. In the event that this organization becomes inactive, all monies will return to the Department of Residential Life’s programming budget line. Said monies will be reserved from the date of initial inactivity until the close of the fiscal year (June 30). If, at any point during the duration between the date of inactivity and the close of the fiscal year, RHA returns to an active status, the reserved monies will return to RHA.

Article V: Elected Officials

  1. To be eligible to be elected to an office, a student must:
    1. Be enrolled as a full-time student at LSU.
    2. Be in good standing with the University, have at least a 2.0 cumulative GPA, and not
      be on disciplinary probation or deferred suspension.
  2. The following subsections describe the processes for elected officials:
    1. The term of elected officials will be approximately one year and will span from the final General Assembly meeting of an academic year (RHA banquet) to the final General Assembly meeting of the next academic year.
    2. The election process of President and Vice President will be as follows:
      1. President and Vice President candidates must run for office on a ticket.
      2. The RHA Elections Commission will preside over the election of the President and Vice President.
      3. If the current Elections Commissioner chooses to run for President or Vice President, he or she must resign as Elections Commissioner by the second General Assembly meeting of the spring semester.
      4. The winning ticket will be the ticket that receives a simple majority vote of those RHA members participating in a campus-wide vote.
      5. If no ticket receives a simple majority vote, a two-ticket runoff election, between the tickets receiving the highest percentage of votes, will occur.
      6. If, in the event, there is an exact tie in a two-ticket election or runoff, the Elections Commission will choose a method of random selection to determine the winner.
      7. Elections will occur no later than five weeks prior to the last day of classes of the spring semester and no earlier than nine weeks prior to the last day of classes of the spring semester.
      8. Filing will occur prior to elections and will be for a period of three class days with a campaigning period of at least five class days. The candidates’ eligibility will be determined immediately following the close of filing. Campaigning will follow a 24-hour period for the verification of candidate eligibility, and the election period must immediately follow campaigning. Election results will be announced to the RHA membership within two class days of the close of voting.
      9. Should the results of an election be contested, concerns must be submitted, in writing, to the Elections Commissioner within two class days after the posting of the winning ticket; immediately after which point, the Elections Commission will make a decision as to the validity of the complaint and decide a plan of action for determining the winner. The winner will be determined no later than 24 hours after the submission of written concerns to the Elections Commissioner.
      10. The President and Vice President will be installed at the final General Assembly meeting of the academic year (RHA Banquet).
      11. Should both the President and Vice President positions become vacant during the academic year, the process outlined above will be followed, save date-specific occurrences. The Elections Commissioner will preside over the election, and the election will occur in a timeline determined by the Elections Commission not to exceed four weeks from the vacancy.
    3. The election process of the Elections Commissioner will be as follows:
      1. Candidates for Elections Commissioner must announce their intention to run for office to the General Assembly no later than three weeks before the last day of classes in the spring semester prior to his or her term of office.
      2. Elections Commissioner candidates must run for office alone.
      3. The RHA President-Elect will preside over the election of the Elections Commissioner
      4. The winning candidate will be the candidate that receives an absolute majority vote of the voting RHA General Assembly members.
      5. If no candidate receives an absolute majority, an immediate two-candidate runoff election, between the two candidates receiving the highest percentage of votes, will occur at the same meeting.
      6. If, in the event, an absolute majority vote cannot be reached in a runoff election, the voting procedures outlined in Article V, section 2, part C, numbers 2-5 should be repeated with the prior candidates from the initial vote at the following regularly scheduled General Assembly meeting.
      7. If an absolute majority cannot be reached following a second vote or runoff, a team composed of the current President, the current Vice President, the President-Elect, the Vice President-Elect, and the current Elections Commissioner will select the new Elections Commissioner. If any of the aforementioned parties are running for the Elections Commissioner position, a current Executive Staff member, chosen at random, will replace him or her
      8. If, in the event, there is an exact tie in a two-candidate election or runoff, the chair of the meeting will cast the deciding vote as per General Assembly voting procedures.
      9. The election will occur at the antepenultimate General Assembly meeting.
      10. Each candidate will be allowed to speak to the General Assembly on his or her own behalf at the antepenultimate meeting prior to the election.
      11. Should the Elections Commissioner position become vacant during the academic year, the process outlined above will be followed, save date-specific occurrences and instances that the President-Elect is noted. Instead, the standing President will preside over the election, and the election will occur in a timeline determined by the standing President not to exceed three weeks from the vacancy.
      12. Should the Elections Commissioner position become vacant during times when the General Assembly is in absentia (summer), the Elections Commission will coordinate the fall election. All other summer duties of the Elections Commissioner will fall upon the President and Vice President. Once the General Assembly is established, the process for electing the Elections Commissioner outlined above will occur, save date-specific occurrences and instances that the President-Elect is noted. Instead, the standing President will preside over the election, and the election will occur in a timeline determined by the standing President not to exceed three weeks from the first General Assembly meeting.
    4. The removal process of elected officials will be as follows:
      1. The term of office of an elected official may be terminated by impeachment for failure to maintain his or her responsibilities and qualifications as specified in this constitution.
        1. The President will oversee all impeachment proceedings unless the President is being impeached, in which case the Elections Commissioner will oversee the process.
        2. Formal charges must be filed to the General Assembly at a regularly scheduled meeting. Changes must be formal, specific, and in written form including a petition of support from an absolute majority of the voting members of the General Assembly.
        3. The vote to impeach will be held at a special meeting immediately following the subsequent regularly scheduled General Assembly meeting. Only voting members, and other allowable personnel per Robert’s Rules of Order will be in attendance at the special meeting. If the impeachment is ratified by an absolute two-thirds vote of the voting members of the General Assembly, the official will be dismissed.
    5. The duties of the President will be:
      1. To set and preside over all RHA meetings or appoint a replacement to do so and set the agenda for those meetings;
      2. To work as a liaison between RHA and university faculty and administration;
      3. To meet with the RHA advisor on a weekly basis, barring illness or extenuating circumstances;
      4. To serve as a representative and spokesperson for RHA in various university settings or to appoint a representative as is necessary;
      5. To vote in the General Assembly only in situations when a tie needs to be broken (when serving in a capacity as the chair);
      6. To draft a budget for the ensuing year for presentation to the General Assembly no later than the second meeting of the academic year;
      7. To call and advertise special meetings as necessary;
      8. To appoint and direct the Executive Staff;
      9. To appoint a Vice President with approval of the General Assembly should the position become vacant;
      10. To preside over the election of an Elections Commissioner;
      11. To be present on campus the summer preceding his or her term, during which time, he or she will meet regularly with the RHA advisor, establish relationships with on-campus entities, contribute to the summer fundraiser, barring any catastrophic, widespread deterrent to fundraising, and provide programming to summer residents, barring any catastrophic, widespread deterrent to programming;
      12. To serve as a functioning member of the Executive Staff;
      13. To know, uphold, and conform to this constitution and other regulations of RHA.
    6. The duties of the Vice President will be:
      1. To work as a liaison between RHA and university faculty and administration;
      2. To meet with the RHA advisor on a weekly basis, barring illness or extenuating circumstances;
      3. To serve as a representative and spokesperson for RHA in various university settings or appoint a representative as is necessary;
      4. To assist the President in his or her duties;
      5. To perform such other duties as may be designated by the RHA President as is consistent with this constitution
      6. To be present on campus the summer preceding his or her term, during which time, he or she will meet regularly with the RHA advisor, establish relationships with on-campus entities, contribute to the summer fundraiser, barring any catastrophic, widespread deterrent to fundraising, and provide programming to summer residents, barring any catastrophic, widespread deterrent to programming;
      7. To serve as a functioning member of the Executive Staff;
      8. To know, uphold, and conform to this constitution and other regulations of RHA.
    7. The duties of the Elections Commissioner will be:
      1. To schedule and conduct all elections under this constitution for both fall and spring semesters except that of the Elections Commissioner;
      2. To serve as chair of the Elections Commission;
      3. To verify the qualifications of candidates at the close of filing, prior to announcing the results of an election;
      4. To verify all election results;
      5. To be present on campus the summer preceding his or her term, during which time, he or she will coordinate Community Council Elections, contribute to the summer fundraiser, barring any catastrophic, widespread deterrent to fundraising, and coordinate a welcome event for incoming fall residents, barring any catastrophic, widespread deterrent to coordinating such an event;
      6. To perform such other duties as may be designated by the RHA President as is consistent with this constitution;
      7. To serve as a functioning member of the Executive Staff;
      8. To know, uphold, and conform to this constitution and other regulations of RHA.

      Articles VI-X can be read by downloading the full constitution from either of the links above.