University of Vermont

Jeffords Hall

CEF Committee Bylaws

  • Approved (7-0 votes) by the Committee on February 8, 2009
  • Amended (10-0 votes) by the Committee on November 17, 2010
  • Amended (9-0 votes) bythe Committee on April11, 2012


I.      Vision, Mission, Name  &Purpose

1.1  Vision: The Clean Energy Fund was created in response to students’ vision of the University of Vermont (UVM) running efficiently on a fraction of its current energy needs, powered by clean, locally produced renewable energy that fulfills both the University’s needs and supports the local economy.

1.2 Mission: The mission of the Clean Energy Fund, hereinafter referred to as the “Fund,” is to finance new clean energy projects on the UVM campus and beyond. The source of the Fund is a student fee dedicated to clean energy projects; this dedicated fee is part of a comprehensive fee that UVM collects each semester from full-time undergraduate and graduate students.

1.3 Name: The name of the committee that will recommend the uses of this fund shall be the Clean Energy Fund Committee, hereinafter referred to as the “Committee.”

1.4 Purpose: The purpose of the Committee is to invite and evaluate clean energy projects submitted by individuals and groups of the UVM community, and to recommend projects to the Vice President of Finance & Administration, who will make the final decision about use of the fund.

II. Goals & Objectives

The Committee will choose projects that support the following goals and objectives, in alignment with the University’s 2009-2013 Strategic Plan:

2.1 Academics: To increase alignment of undergraduate and graduate education with institutional commitment to the environment and public service, the committee will seek to maximize student involvement in the selection, design, review and installation of clean energy projects.

2.2 Scholarship: To foster applications of discovery, innovation, and invention to improve the well-being of Vermont, the region, and the world, the committee will seek to support innovation and foster partnerships with Vermont businesses, and to attract supplemental funding.

2.3 Student Experience: To develop student leadership through problem-based and experiential learning the committee will seek to support well-organized opportunities for service learning and mentored research about clean energy projects by drawing from and connecting with relevant academic programs and activities.

2.4 Institutional Efficacy: To focus on cost containment and to foster transparent decision- making the committee will seek projects that encourage energy cost savings as demonstrated through cost-benefit analysis and full accounting for short-term and long-term maintenance needs over the life cycle of the project.

III. Duties

The Committee’s recommendations to the VP of Finance & Administration will be based on a ranking of projects upon review of project proposals. The Committee is responsible for defining protocols and upholding the vision of the Clean Energy Fund. Protocols shall address the following activities:

3.1 Award Criteria: Define, evaluate, revise award types and criteria for award applications.

3.2 Procedures: Establish procedures for receiving and processing project proposals; create and revise the formatting and content of application forms.

3.3 Publicity: Publicize the Fund t o UVM community, both to solicit participation and applications, and to promote the uses of the Fund.

3.4 Review: Periodically, the Committee will review the overall success of the Fund and provide a report to the VP of Finance & Administration. This report will serve as a recommendation on the size of the Fund for future distribution based on the effectiveness of past projects carried out through this Fund. The Fund shall be reviewed at least every four years from the start of the first award distribution. Project costs and outcomes will be made available to UVM’s Board of Trustees toinform decisions on increasing or decreasing the size of the Fund.

IV. Membership

A major goal of the Clean Energy Fund is to foster student, staff, and faculty cooperation and involvement in reducing overall energy use and increasing the use of renewable energy at the University. Committee membership shall reflect this goal.

4.1 Recruitment: Committee members shall be recruited by the Office of Sustainability, and appointed by the VP of Finance and Administration.

4.2 Number: The Committee shall consist of eleven members.

4.3 Voting Members: The voting membership shall consist of the following representatives:

Four UVM undergraduate students:

  • SGA appointed chair of Committee on Diversity, Equity, and Environmental Ethics (CODEEE)
  • Three students at large as recommended by SGA

Two UVM graduate students:

  • Graduate Student Senate appointed member
  • Graduate student at large as recommended by GSS

Three UVM staff members:

  • Appointee by the Director of Physical Plant
  • Appointee by the Director of Capital Planning & Management
  • Staff member at large as recommended by Staff Council

One UVM faculty member:

  • One faculty member from Faculty Senate Financial Analysis & Physical Planning Committee

One alumni member:

  • An individual who lives in the area and has a background in renewable energy, recruited by the Office of Sustainability.

4.4 Terms: Committee members will serve a one-year term and may serve a maximum of four terms. Terms start in September and end in May, in accordance with the academic year. New members shall be recruited in early September in order to be introduced to the Committee at the first meeting, which will take place at the end of September.

4.5 Scheduling: Committee members must have an account and update their schedule on Oracle Calendar to help the Fund Administrator schedule monthly Committee meetings.

4.6 Removal: Any member may be removed by seven members of the Committee membership whenever in its judgment such removal is in the best interest of the Fund’s mission.

4.7 Vacancies: Seats vacated mid-term by resignation or removal may be recruited by the Office of Sustainability and appointed by the VP of Finance & Administration. Filling of such vacancies will be on an interim basis, with the interim Committee member serving until the end of the original member’s term. Mid-term assignments do not count towards term limits.

4.8 Notification: Committee members who decide to step down from their positions must notify the Office of Sustainability and the Chairperson prior to the next Committee meeting.

V. Meetings

5.1 Frequency: The Committee will meet once a month during the academic year, September to May. The Fund Administrator will notify members by e-mail of the time, date, and location of meetings.

5.2 Openness: Meetings will be open to the public. The committee may vote by a seven member majority to discuss issues that must be kept confidential in executive session, with all votes being taken in open session. All meeting dates and locations will be made public on the CEF page of the Office of Sustainability website.

5.3 Quorum: No fewer than seven members shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business at any meeting of the Committee. If less than a majority of the Committee members is present at said meeting, then a majority of Committee Members present may adjourn the meeting.

5.4 Agreement: The Committee shall strive to reach consensus in decision-making. Consensus is defined by having all members agree to support the decision. If consensus cannot be reached in the judgment of the Chair, a seven member majority of the entire board may make decisions. Committee members who are unable to attend the meeting may register their opinions prior to the meeting to the Fund Administrator so that their opinion is expressed at the meeting. Members not present (may be “present” by electronic means) may not vote.

5.5 Materials: The agenda and supplemental materials shall be made available on the Clean Energy Fund file sharing website for members to review and register their opinion with the Fund Administrator.

5.6 Minutes: Minutes will be recorded by the Fund Administrator at each meeting and will be kept on the file sharing system. The Office of Sustainability is responsible for maintaining the files. All members will receive the meeting minutes and an agenda at least one week prior to each meeting. After all members of the committee have been 1 week to review the minutes, the minutes will be posted to the CEF section of the Office of Sustainability website under the documents section.

VI. Officers & Support

6.1 Election of Officers: Elected officers of the Committee shall consist of a Chair and Vice- Chair/Treasurer. The officers shall be students elected by the Committee during the first meeting of academic year.

6.2 Succession: Each officer shall hold office until the officer’s successor has been duly elected. Officers will assume offices immediately upon election.

6.3 Term: The term of the office shall be one year at the beginning of academic year.

6.4 Executive Committee: The officers of the Committee serve as an ExecutiveCommittee along with the Director of the Office of Sustainability or representative.

6.5 Duties: The duties of the officers are as follows:

  • Chair: The Chair shall lead and facilitate meetings. The Chair is responsible for creating an agenda for each meeting with the Fund Administrator and meets with the Office of Sustainability once a month between CEF meetings. The Chair must assure that the decision-making processes are consistent with the bylaws.
  • Vice Chair/Treasurer: The Vice Chair/Treasurer shall oversee the CEF budget with the assistance of the Fund Administrator and keep a record of expenditures from projects. The Vice Chair/Treasurer is responsible for updates to the committee on the state of the budget at each meeting. The Vice Chair/Treasurer will also serve as Chair when the Chair is not present.

6.6 Removal: Any elected officer may be removed by a seven member majority of the Committee whenever in its judgment such removal is in the best interest of the Fund’s mission.

6.7 Fund Administrator: The Fund Administrator, appointed by the Director of the Office of Sustainability, will provide staff support for the Committee, take and distribute minutes, and provide budget support and other logistical support. The Fund Administrator is a non-voting, ex-officio member of the Committee.

VII. Conflict of Interest

7.1 Definition: For the purpose of this committee, a conflict of interest is defined as any circumstance(s) that might place a Committee member in a position to exercise undue influence over decisions rendered by the Committee or materially benefit from decisions. Members who might have a conflict of interest on a particular issue may choose to recuse themselves from that process without necessarily needing to resign.

7.2 Notification: Any Committee member who has a conflict of interest should notify the Fund. Administrator a month prior to the next Committee meeting.

VIII. Amending the Bylaws

8.1 Conditions: From time to time, the Committee may amend these bylaws as needed to address concerns that arise. Any two Committee members can recommend changes.

8.2 Process: To amend bylaws, committee members recommending the change shall create a written recommendation defining the change. The recommendation shall be submitted to the Committee at least one week prior to a scheduled meeting. The Committee shall discuss the changes, which must be made in accordance with Article 5, Section 4 (Meetings/Agreement).

IX. Alumni and Non-Affiliates

9.1 Alumni and non-UVM affiliates shall have the ability to donate to the Fund.