Louisiana State University Paul M. Hebert Law Center:
Louisiana Cannabis Law Society Chapter Constitution:
Article I. INTRODUCTION
Section 1. Name.
This organization shall be known as the Paul M. Hebert, Louisiana State University Louisiana Cannabis Law Society [hereinafter “the organization” or “LCLS”].
Section 2. Mission Statement
The agendas, activities, and policies of the organization shall be consistent with the following mission statement:
- The Louisiana Cannabis Law Society is a student led organization that aims to advance legal knowledge regarding cannabis in Louisiana by advocating for its constituents, collaborating with various legal entities to disseminate facts, and affecting change through legislation. LCLS provides a forum for all students to further their interest in legal developments of cannabis as well as legal issues relevant to the cannabis industry. Our goal is to foster the academic, social, and professional growth of our members by sponsoring legal scholarly activities, social events and community service.
Section 3. Principles
The organization shall strive to attain the following principles reflected within our mission statement.
- Ensuring the academic achievement and freedom of members;
- Creating networking opportunities with professionals;
- Fostering academic integrity through research and drafting;
- Promoting an environment of open, honest communication and debate;
- Instilling intellectual discussions regarding the future of our state’s cannabis industry at the Law Center and LSU Community by hosting informative programs.
Section 4. Other Obligations
The organization shall be obligated to:
- Maintain a relationship with alumni and other interested lawyers from the local area as well as lawyers in the field of cannabis;
- Maintain active status as an organization at Paul M. Hebert Law Center.
Article II. MEMBERSHIP
Section 1. Eligibility
Membership shall be open to all law students at Paul M. Hebert Law Center and to all others as outlined in this article.
Section 2. Membership
Participating members shall consist of those members who participate in the organization.
- For a member to be deemed as “participating” he or she must:
- Have served on a committee and implemented an activity while serving on that committee; or
- Attend LCLS general meetings, committee meeting, or social events.
Section 3. Rights and privileges of Active Membership
- Active Members shall be vested with the following rights and privileges:
- Participate in all activities sponsored or funded by LCLS; and
- Vote at general meetings in accordance with Article VII; and
- Vote for the election or removal of officers; and
- Run for and hold a position as an executive officer; and
- Hold a committee chair position; and
- Vote for any expenditure of the organization consistent with provisions prescribed in this document and in the bylaws.
Section 4. Prospective Membership
- Basic Requirements for Prospective Membership
- Candidates for Prospective Membership must have:
- Signed up for a LCLS Committee; and
- Attended a specified number of general meetings to be set by the Executive Board; and
- Candidates for Prospective Membership must have:
- At the discretion of the Executive Board, attended a specified number of LCLS sponsored or co-sponsored events.
Section 5. Non-members
- Students that neither participate in the organization pursuant to Section 2 of this Article shall not be considered members of the organization.
- Non-members shall have no voting privileges in the organization.
- At the discretion of the Executive Board, non-members may be entitled to participate in any LCLS sponsored or co-sponsored events, programs, or services.
Section 6. Termination of Membership
- Any type of membership may be terminated upon the resignation of a particular member.
- The termination may be expressed in the form of a written statement from the particular member or implied from the overt actions of the particular member.
- Whether the “overt actions” of a particular member is sufficient for termination shall be determined by the Executive Board.
Article III. EXECUTIVE BOARD OFFICIALS
Section 1. Eligibility
- Any member who has obtained active membership status by a date designated by the Executive Board before an election may hold office. The 1L Representative shall be an exception to this rule.
Section 2. Nominations
In order to qualify for nominations, all eligible members must submit a statement of intent outlining their respective platforms to the Vice President at a date and time specified by the Executive Board. The statement of intent must state the requested position and any other elements prescribed by the Executive Board.
Section 3. Term of Office
- The term of office for each executive officer, with the exception of the 1L Representative, shall not commence until the second Monday of the month of April following the election and shall terminate on the first Friday of April of the following year.
- Newly elected officers shall preside over the April general meeting following their election, that is, if such a meeting is planned.
Section 4. Removal
- Permissive Grounds for Removal
Any executive official may be removed from office for the following reasons:
- Derelict of duty; or
- Poor job performance; or
- Malfeasance in office; or
- Not acting in good faith when it is required; or
- Committing abhorrent or illegal behavior.
- Mandatory Grounds for Removal
- Any executive official shall be automatically removed from office for the following reasons:
- Upon passage of a vote of no confidence by recall pursuant to Section 5 of this Article; or
- Upon the passage of a vote of censure pursuant to Section 6 of this Article.
- Any executive official shall be automatically removed from office for the following reasons:
Section 5. Votes of No Confidence
- A vote of no confidence allows the membership to express disfavor of the Executive Board by recall or resolution.
- Vote of No Confidence by recall
- A vote of no confidence by recall is used to remove executive officials from their respective positions.
- A vote of no confidence by recall requires the passage of a two-thirds vote of the entire membership.
Upon the successful passage of a vote of no confidence, the line of succession for executive officials prescribed in Section 7(C) of this Article shall be ignored and a new election shall be held seasonably to fill the vacancy.
Section 5.1. Limitations
- Only one vote of no confidence by recall may be held per semester against an individual executive officer; and
- Votes of no confidence shall not be held during the summer and no earlier than October 1 of the Fall semester.
Section 6. Vote of Censure
- Vote of Censure is a mechanism for the Executive Board to temporarily relieve a fellow Executive Board member of his or her duties. This measure is meant to recognize that Executive Board members are in a better position than the general membership to see the questionable behavior of a fellow Executive Board official and, accordingly, may pass a vote of censure when that questionable behavior causes or may potentially cause a substantial detriment to the organization.
- The grounds for censure shall be pursuant to the grounds of removal as prescribed in Section 4 of this Article.
- A censure must be approved by a unanimous vote of the entire Executive Board, with the exception of the candidate for censure.
- A vote of censure is effective immediately, though the censured Executive Board member may seek to overturn the censure by pleading to the general membership. A Censure shall be overturned upon the passage of a simple majority vote of the entire membership in the censured official’s favor by secret ballot.
- A vote of censure shall not exceed one calendar month. To exceed a month, other means of removal may be used.
- Executive Board officials shall act in good faith and have valid reasons for passing a vote of censure.
- Upon the censure of an executive board official, the Executive Board, by unanimous vote, shall appoint any active member to temporarily fill the position of the censured Executive Board member, irrespective of the line of succession prescribed in Section 7(C) of this Article.
- A written statement with reasons and grounds for censure shall be given to all members seasonably upon the passage or the attempted passage of a vote of censure.
Section 7. Composition
- The executive power of the organization shall be vested in Executive Board, and the Board shall be empowered to pass any rules, policy, or agenda necessary for the efficient administration of the organization. However, this executive power shall be consistent with all governing documents of the organization, and such power may be overruled by a simple majority vote of participating members present and voting at a duly constituted meeting of the organization.
- The Executive Board shall be composed of the President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, and 1L Representative. The bylaws may provide for additional Executive Board officials.
- The line of succession for the Executive Board shall be President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, and then 1L Representative. While the bylaws may provide for additional Executive Board officials, such provisions shall not interrupt the order outlined in this subsection.
Section 8. President, Powers and Duties
- The President shall have the following powers in the performance of the following duties:
- Serve as chief executive officer and administrative officer of the organization;
- Serve as the single voice of the organization to the Law Center administration and student body and to the LSU community as a whole;
- Preside over all general meetings and Executive Board meetings;
- Call special meetings of the organization;
- Serve on, appoint, or both serve on and appoint members to any Law Center committee; and
- Powers and Duties listed in this Section are solely for the President and may not be shared with or delegated to any other executive official or member, with the exception of the Vice President. This provision is meant to ensure that the President is solely accountable for his mandated duties.
Section 9. Vice President, Powers and Duties
- The Vice President shall have the following powers in the performance of the following duties:
- Serve as chief assistant to the President;
- Assume the duties of the President in the absence or incapacity of the President;
- Administer and oversee all elections of the organization; and
- Preside over and manage all standing and special committees of the organization.
- For purposes of Subsection A (3) of this Section, “administer” does not include drafting election rules that have not been ratified by the membership. The bylaws may outline an emergency procedure that may deviate from this rule, although such procedures may be overruled by motion of the organization.
Section 10. Secretary, Powers and Duties
- The Secretary shall have the following powers in the performance of the following duties:
- Maintain the records of the chapter;
- Draft and dispense, upon request, the minutes of each general and Executive Board meeting;
- Maintain and distribute a directory of contact information of LCLS members and all consenting minority students at the Law Center;
- Inform the membership of the meeting dates and times of general or special meetings and events;
- Schedule rooms and other necessary facilities for activities of the organization; and
- Create, whenever necessary, a calendar of events to be distributed to the membership.
Section 11. Treasurer, Powers and Duties
- The Treasurer shall have the following powers in the performance of the following duties:
- Maintain the financial records of the organization in good order;
- Assist the President in the preparation of a budget;
- Collect all monies of the organization or members and deposit all monies received in the organizational account within five to ten business days;
- Dispense money for reimbursement to members;
- Provide the financial information of the organization, within a reasonable period of time, at the written request of any member;
- Pay all national and regional organizational dues; and
- Oversee all standing and special committees pertaining to fiscal matters of the organization including fundraising.
Section 12. 1L Representative, Powers and Duties
- The 1L Representative shall have the following powers in the performance of the following duties:
- Represent the 1L class on the Executive Board;
- Ensure 1L input in the programming of the Education Committee; and
- Oversee a special 1L project, as required by the Executive Board.
Section 13. Vacancies
The following rules shall apply when an executive official position is vacant.
- Should a position become vacant because of the removal or resignation of an officer, a special election shall be held seasonably to fill the vacancy.
- Should a position become vacant because no one ever applied for the position or chose to be elected to the position, the President shall be empowered to appoint someone to fill the vacancy. Such appointees are not required to meet the eligibility requirements prescribed in Article III, Section One.
- The line of succession prescribed in Article III, Section 7(C) shall be used in the incapacity or absence of an executive officer and shall not be used when an officer has been removed or has resigned.
- The position of Vice President shall be an exception to the rule prescribed in Subsection A of this Section. In the event of the removal, resignation, or permanent incapacity of the President, the Vice President shall assume the position of the President. An election shall then be held to fill the position of the Vice President.
Article IV. COMMITTEES
Section 1. Special (Ad-hoc) Committees
- The President or twenty-percent of the entire membership shall be empowered to create special committees as deemed necessary.
- Special (Ad-hoc) Committees may be created by the President or twenty-percent of the entire membership for any reason, especially to address fundraising, special events, and informative programming.
Section 2. Committee Heads
- Committee heads shall be appointed by the President.
- Committee heads shall be automatically removed from office by not maintaining participating membership status.
- Committee heads shall be removed from office with just cause at the discretion of the President.
- Committee heads shall be called “Chair” of their respective committees.
- The term of the committee head shall expire the same as stated in Section 3. Any project that has not yet been completed shall be carried out by the former committee head unless the incoming Executive Board states otherwise.
- Committee heads shall have the following powers in the performance of the following duties:
- Act as the chief operating officer of the committee by managing all activities of the committee; and
- Serve as presiding officer of the committee.
- May appoint vice chairs of their respective committee to assist in the duties of office. In the absence or incapacity of the committee head, the vice chair shall assume the duties of the committee head.
Article V. MEETINGS
Section 1. General Meetings
- Meetings of the membership shall be called by the President or by twenty-percent of the participating membership.
- Notice of Meetings
- All members, regardless of membership status, are to be notified of a general meeting one week in advance. In the case of an emergency meeting, notice requirements are to be determined at the President’s discretion.
- If improper notice is given, any action or measure determined at the meeting shall be invalid. However, if the improper notice is due to some unforeseen event beyond the control of the person or persons calling the general meeting, the Parliamentarian’s approval must be obtained, and, upon such approval, an explanation as to the improper notice must be included in the meeting notification.
- The recognized form of parliamentary procedure governing the orderly transaction of business at each meeting is Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised. Such procedure may be temporarily modified at any meeting by a simple majority vote of participating members present and voting at a general meeting as long as the modification is consistent with all the governing documents of the organization.
- Quorum necessary to conduct official business at a meeting shall consist of one-third (33%) of the entire participating membership of the organization.
Section 2. Agenda
- The President shall set the agenda for each meeting and shall distribute a tentative agenda to the entire membership, preferably concurrently with the meeting notification, before a general meeting
- Any item of business to be placed on the agenda must be submitted to the President at least 24 hours before the general meeting at which the item is to be discussed.
Section 3. Executive Board Meetings
- The Executive Board shall meet regularly throughout the school year.
- The Executive Board may pass rules, with the approval of the membership, in the bylaws concerning who may attend Executive Board meetings. In the absence of such rules, Executive Board meetings shall be open to all members, that is, when the Executive Board is not in Executive Session.
Section 4. Committee Meetings
- The various standing and special committees shall meet at a time designated by the committee head, Vice President, or President.
- Committee heads shall also prepare an oral or written report of their respective planned activities at each general meeting.
Each committee head shall provide a written report or progress report on their respective planned activities to the Vice President at a time designated by the Vice President.
Article VI. FINANCIAL AFFAIRS
Section 1. Budget
The President, with the assistance of the Treasurer, shall present a budget to the membership at the next general meeting following the due date for the payment of membership dues, at the second meeting of the spring semester, and at the written request of any member, regardless of membership status.
Section 2. Expenditures
- The President shall approve all expenditures of the organization that does not exceed $500. An itemized list of such expenditures shall be signed by the President and submitted, seasonably, to the entire membership for their information.
- Expenditures exceeding $500.01 shall be approved by a simple majority vote of paying members present and voting at a duly constituted meeting of the organization. Payment of National and Regional Dues shall be an exception to this rule.
The paying membership may veto any expenditure approved by the President by a two-thirds vote of the entire paying membership. Expenditures may only be vetoed as long as the organization has not been legally or contractually bound to perform the object of the expenditure.
- Even though the President or paying membership may approve of an expenditure, the Treasurer shall be empowered to actually provide money for or issue checks for the expenditure. The Treasurer shall also be empowered to overrule, amend, or revoke any approved expenditure when the expenditure is not financially prudent for the organization.
- The checking account for the organization shall require the dual signature of the President and Treasurer.
Article VII. VOTING
Section 1. General Rules
- Each member shall have only one vote.
- Only participating 1L members may vote for the position of 1L Representative. This rule shall be an exception to the rule prescribed in Subsection A of this Section.
- Executive officials are members of the organization and shall maintain all voting privileges in the organization.
- Voting may be conducted by ballot, by general consent, by electronic means, by voice, by show of hands, by rising, or by any combination of the aforementioned voting procedures. The presiding officer shall determine the voting procedure when one is not specified by any governing document of the organization.
- Proxy votes shall not be allowed.
- Voting rules and procedures found in Robert’s Rules of Order shall be applicable to the organization as long as they are supplementary or complementary to the rules prescribed in this Constitution or any other governing document of the organization.
Section 2. Elections
- Elections for executive officials shall be held on or before March 31 of each academic year.
- All officers, unless provided otherwise, shall be elected by simple majority vote of the paying membership voting in an election. Where no candidate receives a simple majority of the votes, a run-off election shall be held among the candidates with the two highest vote totals.
Section 3. Other Types of Votes
- Any other votes taken by the organization that may occur for any reason shall be approved by a simple majority of members present and voting in a meeting or voting in an election or any other voting procedures.
- The following actions shall require a simple majority vote of members present and voting at a duly constituted meeting of the organization:
- Expenditures over $500.01 (vote by the paying membership); or
- Participation in any community service project (vote by the participating membership); or
- Co-sponsoring or participating in an event, program or project with another organization (vote by the participating membership); or
- Any other activity that may impact the goodwill of the organization (vote by the participating membership).
- A vote is not necessary for:
- Hosting social events, although funding of such events may require a vote; or
- Conducting fundraising efforts.
Section 4. Role of Vice President
- The Vice President shall set the dates of elections and set the dates for the submission of electronic votes and absentee ballots.
- All aspects of elections and voting procedures shall be administered by the Vice President, with the exception of voting procedures at meetings. Voting procedures that may arise in the normal operations of meetings shall be administered by the presiding officer of the meeting, typically the President. However, any elections that may occur at a meeting shall be administered by the Vice President.
- In the event the Vice President is a candidate for office, elections shall be administered by an executive official, as long as the official is not a candidate, in accordance to the following order: Treasurer, Secretary, Historian, IL Representative, and then the appointment of a participating member by members present and voting at a general meeting.
- The Vice President shall be empowered to create a committee of members to assist in the administration of elections.
- The Vice President shall act in good faith and confidentiality throughout the election process.
Section 5. Electronic Voting
- Electronic votes shall consist of the submission of an e-mail from qualified voting members to an e-mail account designated by the Vice President.
- E-mails must be submitted from an e-mail account with the school’s official domain name (i.e. @lsu.edu).
- The Vice President shall submit a confirmation to all members who submit electronic votes.
Section 6. Verification of Election Results, Election Commission
- All elections shall be verified by an Election Commission before the announcement of the election results.
- Complaints concerning the results or administration of elections shall be submitted to the Parliamentarian for resolution through the Election Commission.
- The Election Commission shall be chaired by the Parliamentarian.
- In the event the Parliamentarian is a candidate for office, the Election Commission shall be chaired by an executive official, as long as the official is not a candidate or serving as an administrator of elections, in accordance to the following order: Treasurer, Secretary, Historian, IL Representative, and then the appointment of a general member by members present and voting at a general meeting.
- The composition, rules, and procedures of the Election Commission shall be outlined in the bylaws.
The role of the Election Commission in the election process shall differ from the role of the Vice President as administrator of elections in that the Election Commission shall act as the entity to review the actions of the Vice President and ensure the election procedures were performed pursuant to this Constitution and any rules governing the organization.
BYLAWS and AMENDMENTS
Section 1. Creation of Bylaws
The organization may adopt bylaws to increase the efficiency of the organization. Bylaws shall be created by a two-thirds vote of participating members present and voting at a duly constituted meeting of the organization.
Section 2. Amendments
- Constitutional amendments may be proposed for consideration by twenty-percent of the entire paying membership or by the Executive Board.
- Proposed amendments shall become part of the Constitution after ratification by a two-thirds vote of paying members voting in an election.
- Bylaw amendments shall be made by a simple majority vote of participating members present and voting at a duly constituted meeting of the organization.
Section 3. Redrafting the Constitution
The organization may rewrite, substantially revise, or reorganize this Constitution upon the passage of three-fourths votes of paying members voting in an election.
Section 4. Effective Date
The Constitution and Bylaws of the Association, or any amendment thereof, shall become effective immediately upon adoption, except where an alternative date is specified therein.
Article IX. REGISTERED STUDENT ORGANIZATION AMENDMENTS
The following are the basic policies of this organization:
Section 1. The organization shall be non-commercial.
Section 2. The name of the organization or the names of any members in their official capacities shall not be used in connection with a commercial concern.
Section 3. The organization shall cooperate with Louisiana State University to support the improvement of education in ways that will not interfere with administration of the University.
Section 4. The organization may cooperate with other organizations and agencies, but persons representing the organization in such matters shall make no commitments that bind the organization.
Section 5. The organization agrees to abide by all University policies and local, state, and federal laws.
Section 1. Any LSU student, faculty member or staff member who subscribes to the purpose and basic policies of the organization may become a member of this organization, subject only to compliance with the provisions of the constitution.
Section 2. Active membership is restricted to LSU students. Associate membership is restricted to LSU faculty and staff. Associate members are non-voting members.
Section 1. To be eligible to be elected to, appointed to, or to hold an office or be a standing committee chairperson, a student must:
- Undergraduate students must be enrolled as full-time students at Louisiana State University (Baton Rouge); graduate students must be enrolled as part-time (with at least 6 hours) or fulltime students at LSU;
- Students must have at least a 2.0 cumulative GPA and be in good academic standing with the University;
- Student must not be on disciplinary probation or deferred suspension. This includes newly elected officers, as well as continuing officers. Students may continue organizational membership if on disciplinary probation.
- Student must meet all other academic standards, established by the student organization and included in the organization’c constitution and / or bylaws.
- Graduating seniors who are not registered full-time may still hold office in a student organization during the semester in which they are scheduled to graduate.
Section 1. This constitution may be amended at any regular meeting of the organization by a two thirds vote of the members present and voting, provided that notice of the proposed amendment shall have been given at the previous meeting and that the proposed amendment shall be subject to approval of Campus Life or Greek Life, depending on which entity has responsibility for registering the student organization.
Section 1: Removal Process an Executive Board Member
- The President has the authority to terminate any officer position upon repeated dereliction of duty using the process as follows:
- The negligent exec board member must be put on notice of their dereliction of duty.
- The President must give expectations for correction of the problem as well as a reasonable date for expected improvement.
- If said expected improvement is not met, the President may terminate the Executive Board member and appoint another in their place.
- In cases of severe neglect of duty, the President must terminate the guilty party immediately and appoint a replacement if deemed necessary.
- This termination process may or may not include the executive board member being put on notice of their dereliction of duty.
- The term of office of an elected official may be terminated by impeachment during the fall or spring semesters for failure to maintain their responsibilities and qualifications as specified in this constitution.
- The President will oversee all impeachment proceedings unless the President is being impeached, in which case the proceedings will be chaired by gavel order, so long as that executive board member is also not under review for being removed from their position.
- Formal charges must be filed to the General Assembly at a regularly scheduled meeting. Charges 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.
- 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 the latest edition of 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.
- If the President or Vice President critically violates the terms set forth by the constitution in such a manner that is detrimental to the organization when the General Assembly is not in session, the following process will occur
- The individual’s behavior may then be brought to and reviewed by a committee consisting of the following members:
- The organization advisor;
- Any exec board members who are not under review, if applicable.
- The committee will interview the President or Vice President that is in violation of the terms set forth by the constitution.
- The alleged board member will have the chance to present any additional documentation
- The alleged board member retains the right to an advisor during the meeting.
- Upon conclusion of the meeting, the committee will deliberate and vote on whether the board member should be removed or not.
- The vote must deliver an absolute majority in order to proceed with termination.
- The final decision must be delivered in writing to the alleged board member Revised 8 September 2021 13 within 10 business days of the initial meeting.
- If an executive board member is removed from office during their current term due to termination, impeachment, or removal due to non-GPA related issues, they will no longer be eligible for any following academic term.
- The terminated executive board member has the right to appeal to the decision following the appeals process in Section 2 of this Article.
Section 2: Appeal Process for an Executive Board Member Removal
- If an executive board member who was removed from their position would like to appeal that decision, they must follow this outlined process:
- The appeal request must be submitted in writing to the organization advisor within 5 business days of the decision being delivered.
- Said appeal must include an identification of who the appealing student is and what decision they are appealing.
- Upon receiving the request for appeal, the advisor will determine if they are able to serve as the chairperson for this appeal.
- If necessary, the advisor may recuse themselves from the meeting and appoint a replacement chairperson for the appeal.
- Once the chairperson is determined, the chairperson will select two additional members within the organization to form an appeal committee.
- The appeal chairperson will schedule an appeal meeting with the removed executive board member within 15 business days of the request for appeal.
- The appeal committee will request and receive from the organization any and all documentation regarding the decision for removal.
- If the appeal committee feel it is pertinent, they may interview organization members who may provide additional insight to the circumstances for removal.
- During the appeal meeting, the removed executive board member will present their case for appeal, including any documentation they may have for the situation.
- The removed executive board member retains the right to an advisor during the meeting.
- The appeal committee will deliberate and deliver a final decision within 10 business days. Said decision will be delivered in writing to the removed executive board member.