Entrada General Council General Council's Regulation

General Council's Regulation

General Council's Regulation



Article 1
(Definition and objectives) 

The General Council is the governing body of the University which sets the strategic development and oversees the institution. 

Article 2

1. The General Council is composed of the following twenty-one members: 

a) Eleven representatives of faculty members and researchers;
b) Three student representatives;
c) A representative of the non-teaching and non-researching staff;
d) Six external personalities of recognized merit, not belonging to the University, with relevant knowledge and experience for the institution. 

2. The members of the General Council do not represent groups or any sectorial interests and are independent in the performance of their duties.

Article 3

1. The General Council shall: 

a) Elect its president from among the external members referred to in subparagraph d) paragraph 1 of the preceding article;
b) Approve its rules of procedure;
c) Approve any amendments to the Statutes of the University, pursuant to Article 80 of these Statutes;
d) Organize the election procedure and elect the Rector, as defined in article 22 of the Statutes of the University; 
e) Review the acts of the Rector and of the Management Council;
f) Propose initiatives deemed necessary for the proper functioning of the institution; 
g) To decide on the reactivation of the Foundation of the University of Madeira and on the proposal of the transition of the University or an organic unity to the foundational regime, pursuant to Article 129, law no. 62/2007, and in compliance with the provisions in that same law, article 68;
h) Deliberate on partnerships and cooperation with other public or private authorities in the different modalities foreseen in the law, where partnerships and cooperation concerned have strategic focus or significant impact in the institution, upon hearing the Academic Senate whenever these concern international agreements and partnerships;
i) Appoint and dismiss the Student Ombudsman, upon hearing the Senate;
j) Appoint and dismiss the Presidents of the Institutes, under paragraph 3 of article 49 of the Statutes of the University.
l) Perform other duties foreseen in the law or in the Statutes of the University. 

2. The General Council, acting on a proposal from Rector, shall: 

a) Approve medium-term strategic plans and the action plan for the Rector’s four-year term of office;
b) Approve the general guidelines of the institution regarding science, education, finance and property;
c) Approve the annual activity plans and assess the annual activity report of the institution;
d) Approve the budget proposal;
e) Approve the annual consolidated financial statements, together with the report of the Statutory Auditor;
f) Set the tuition fees to be paid by the students;
g) Propose or authorize, as provided by law, the acquisition or disposal of real estate assets of the institution, as well as credit transactions;
h) Create, transform or close down organic units;
i) Regulate the creation of projects and research units and services, referred to in Article 50, paragraph 4;
j) Create, close down, transfer or associate Institutes of Innovation to the University;
k) Appoint and dismiss the Presidents of the University Pedagogical Council and of the Polytechnic Pedagogical Council;
l) Decide on: 
i) The creation and termination of Projects of a strategic nature and overall incidence;
ii) Termination of Projects;
iii) The integration of Projects in Innovation Institutes; 
m) Approve the organization of services proposal;
n) Approve the general guidelines for the performance assessment of the faculty and of non-teaching staff, upon hearing the Senate;
o) Approve all management measures that may have significant impact and affect the normal functioning of the University, including the reorganization of physical resources assigned to the different structures;
p) Adopt the measures proposed by the Rector pursuant to paragraph 2 of Article 27 of the Statutes of the University;
q) Pronouncement on other matters submitted by the Rector;
r) Exercise any other powers conferred by law or by the Statutes of the University. 

3. In all matters within its competence, the General Council may request advice from external authorities, as well as other bodies of the institution or of its organic units. 

Article 4
(Competence of the President) 

1. The President of the General Council shall: 

a) Convene the meetings of the General Council;
b) Chair the meetings, declare the opening, suspension and closing and direct the proceedings, namely: 
i) Give the floor, ensure the order of debates, compliance with the laws and regularity of the proceedings; 
ii) Provide timely knowledge of messages, information and documents submitted to him;
iii) Putting the proposals and requests admitted to discussion and voting; 
c) Exercise the casting vote;
d) Request the publication of the deliberations;
e) Ensure the implementation and compliance of the General Council deliberations;
f) Ensure that the necessary administrative, technical or other support is provided to the General Council.
2. The decisions of the President shall be subject to review by the plenary of the General Council.
3. The President shall also be responsible for declaring and verifying the openings in the General Council and make the necessary replacements, in accordance with the Statutes of the University.
4. In the case of absence or impediment, the President shall be replaced by the oldest Councillor from among the external members referred to in subparagraph c), paragraph 1, article 2.
5. The President of the General Council does not interfere in the exercise of powers of the other bodies of the institution and does not act nor speak on the behalf of the institution.
Article 5
1. The General Council shall have a Secretary, who shall be a senior technician of the University chosen by the President of the General Council.
2. The Secretary answers to the President of the General Council, and has the mission to ensure the necessary administrative, technical or other support to the General Council and act as secretary in the meetings of the General Council. 
Article 6
1. The General Council may establish permanent or temporary committees, designed to study and propose decisions on specific areas within their competence.
2. Each committee has a President and its constitution and presidency shall be decided by the General Council, on a proposal from its President.
3. It is up to the General Council, on a proposal from its President, to decide whether the committee created is permanent or temporary and in the case of temporary committees to set the date of expiry of its term.
4. The General Council may also participate in joint committees with other bodies if it considers its creation in the best interest of the University.
5. It is the responsibility of the University to provide the human, physical and financial resources necessary for the functioning of the committees referred to in the preceding paragraphs.
Article 7
(Duty of participation)
1. All members of the General Council have the duty to participate in meetings and other Council activities.
2. Attendance at the meetings of the General Council of the members elected by the faculty members and students takes precedence over other services at the University, with the exception of public examinations and competitions.
3. Absences from meetings must be justified to the President of the General Council before the beginning of the meeting, or, in cases of proven impediment, within five days immediately following the end of the justifying impediment.
Article 8
(Best Practices)
1. The members of the General Council base their behaviour on rules of courtesy, tolerance and loyalty.
2. The members of the General Council have the right to access all available information on the University and should require it to the President of the General Council, whenever relevant to the decision-making process.
3. The members of the General Council are guided by rules of discretion, and therefore should not publicly comment on the Council meetings. The Board may deliberate by an absolute majority on the confidential nature of any of their decisions.
4. A member of the General Council who has a conflict of interest regarding any matter under discussion must state the nature and degree of such conflict until the beginning of the meeting in which the matter is scheduled to be addressed, refrain from participating in any discussion or voting and leave the meeting, if so requested by the majority of Council members, or by his/her own initiative. There is a conflict of interest when the decision or matter under discussion may result in loss or direct benefit to the Board member in question and/or to a member of his/her family.
Article 9
(Mandates and substitutions)
1. Elected and co-opted members are elected for a four-year period and students are elected for two years.
2. The electoral calendar is determined by the General Council. The electoral process is chaired by one of the external members referred to in subparagraph c), paragraph 1 Article 2.
3. The members of the General Council may only be dismissed by it in deliberation by absolute majority in the case of serious misconduct at a meeting convened for this purpose and according to a procedure that will take place in accordance with a regulation to be approved by the General Council, also by an absolute majority.
4. Elected or co-opted members are only replaced in the case of resignation and prolonged or permanent impediment.
5. The replacement of the members of the General Council is definite and takes place as follows:
a) Elected members are replaced by the next member of his/her candidate list;
b) In the case of co-opted members, through a new co-optation, carried out in compliance with paragraphs 1 and 2, article 16 of the Statutes of the University. The first meeting referred to in subparagraph a), paragraph 2 of the same article should be held within no more than 10 days after the President of the General Council has announced the existence of the vacancy.
6. The function of member of the General Council is incompatible with that of Rector, Vice-Rector, member of the Management Council and Student Ombudsman.
7. The member of the General Council who wishes to apply for the position of Rector must formalize his/her resignation as member of the General Council until the date of submission of his/her application.
Article 10
1. The General Council meets ordinarily four times a year and extraordinarily whenever called by the President by his/her own initiative, at the request of the Rector or by a third of its members.
2. Notices of meeting of the Council must meet the following requirements:
a) Must be signed by the President;
b) Must state the place, date and time of the meeting as well as the agenda;
c) Must be sent to its members at least seven consecutive days before the date of the meeting;
d) The documentation supporting the matters included in the agenda shall be sent together with the notice. 

3. By decision of the General Council, the following persons may attend the meetings without having the right to vote: 

a) The Presidents of the organic units, the Pedagogical Councils, University and Polytechnic, of the University, and of the Innovation Institutes, as well as the Coordinators of research units based at the University, recognized and positively assessed under the law;
b) Invited personalities to comment on subjects of their expertise.
4. The Rector participates in the meetings of the General Council, without having the right to vote.
5. The Secretary shall attend the meetings of the General Council.
Article 11
(Quorum and resolutions)
1. The General Council will convene with the majority of the legal number of its members, without prejudice to the provisions concerning the majorities required for the approval of certain subjects.
2. Each Council member is entitled to one vote;
3. All present members have to vote, without prejudice to the right to abstain;
4. Except as provided in the following paragraph voting shall be conducted nominally;
5. Deliberations involving the assessment of people’s behaviours and qualities are the only ones to be taken by means of a secret ballot; in case of doubt, the Council will decide on the form of voting.
6. The members of the Council may submit written explanations of vote, which will be attached to the minute.
7. The deliberations referred to in paragraphs a), b), c), e), h) and i) paragraph 2 of article 3 must be preceded by the assessment of an opinion to be prepared and approved by the external members referred to in subparagraph c) paragraph 1 of article 2.
8. The deliberations of the General Council are approved by simple majority, except the cases in which the law, the Statutes of the University or this Regulation require absolute majority or another of a more demanding nature, or the cases in which the Council, by absolute majority vote, so decides.
9. The decisions referred to in subparagraphs a) paragraph 1, subparagraphs g) i) and o), paragraph 2 of article 3 require absolute majority.
Article 12
1. The Secretary draws up the minutes of the General Council meetings, which are distributed by Council members for approval.
2. The Council, when so resolved by a majority of the members present may approve the minute right at the meeting to which it relates.
3. The minute of each meeting shall include:
a) Place, start and finishing hours and any interruption;
b) The members who attended and those who were absent;
c) The matters discussed in the meeting;
d) A summary of the discussions held, with an explicit record of the position taken by any member, where requested;
e) The content of the deliberations;
f) Voting method and results;
g) The explanations of vote which have been submitted in writing.
4. The minute shall be signed by the President and the Secretary.
5. The minutes shall be made available on the website of the University, after having been approved, with the exception of matters considered confidential.
Article 13
(Interpretation and integration of omissions)
1. The President shall interpret this regulation and integrate the omissions without prejudice to the right of appeal to the plenary.
2. The deliberations of the President on the interpretation and integration of omissions of the current regulation shall be binding, if subsequently approved by the plenary, by an absolute majority of its members.
Article 14
1. This regulation may be amended by the Council, either by the initiative of its President or upon proposal of at least one third of its members.
2. The amendments to this Regulation shall be approved by an absolute majority of its members.


[1] Regulation amended in accordance with the deliberation No. 171, of the General Council meeting of October 23, 2015.