UM CSSA Constitution
(Revised and ratified in Jul 2003)
The Chinese Students and Scholars Association, hereafter acronymized as and referred to as “CSSA”, is a non-political non-profit association of, by, and for Chinese students, scholars at the University of Michigan. We establish this Constitution to ensure justice, to promote and protect the welfare and freedom for all its members.
Article I Members
Section I. Voting Membership
Any full-time Chinese student or scholar at the University of Michigan shall have the right to vote in CSSA presidential election and important issues regarding CSSA.
Section II. General Membership
The Family relatives of Chinese Students and Scholars at the University of Michigan shall have the right to attend CSSA events and activities. Any other Student and Scholar at the University of Michigan, who recognizes or observes CSSA Constitution is eligible to apply for general membership.
Article II Structure
Section I CSSA executive committee is an administrative body to manage the routine affairs of the CSSA. Its president is elected directly by members in CSSA general election.
Section II CSSA Council of Representatives represent all CSSA members and shall be responsible for CSSA members. The Council is independent of CSSA executive committee, monitoring the duties, the financial activities of CSSA executive committee and enforcement of the election plan of CSSA president.
Section III President shall nominate other committee members and appoint them upon the approval (above 50%) of the Council of Representatives
Section IV Regulations and rules shall be proposed by CSSA executive committee, and take effect upon the approval (above 2/3) of the Council of Representatives .
Section V The tenure of the President, and Treasurer is one year,
Article III Election
Section I The general election shall be in summer and shall be announced no later than six weeks prior to the election date.
Section II The Council of Representatives shall be responsible for formation of an election committee with at least seven members. Each candidate is eligible to nominate one representative to the election committee. Other election committee members shall be drawn from the Council of Representatives or CSSA volunteers upon approval of presidential candidates. More than sixty percent of election committee shall be from either the Council or volunteers, the election committee should be composed of odd numbers of members. Candidates can say their opinion about certain election committee member, but the final decision shall be made by the Council. The election committee shall be formed four weeks prior to the election General Meeting.
Section III Member of Election Committee shall not be a current or next year’s CSSA executive committee member.
Section IV The election provides members ample opportunities to cast their votes. It begins with online voting of five days and ends up with an election convention.
Section V Winners shall be determined by the majority rule. Under the situation of a tire, a second general election shall be held no later than 2 weeks after.
Section VI The outgoing CSSA executive committee shall actively assist the incoming CSSA executive committee to facilitate a smooth transition. The former shall turn over all properties managed by CSSA to the latter within four weeks of the election.
Article IV Council of Representatives
Section I Council of Representatives shall supervise the implement of financial regulation and ensure CSSA financial transparency
Section II Council of Representatives shall monitor, publicize but not intervene CSSA daily activities and operations,
Section III Council of Representative has the right to impeach CSSA executive committee member upon violation of constitution, financial rules or serious malfeasance. This shall be effective with approval of above 2/3 council members. For the elected president who violate the above rules, Council shall initiate the impeach process, which will take effect upon approval of 2/3 majority of CSSA general voting. In this case the vice president shall take the position.
Article V Amendments
Section I. Any amendment to CSSA Constitution must be announced to CSSA members seven days prior to voting decision.
Section II. Any amendment to the CSSA Constitution must be approved by 2/3 majority of eligible Voting Members present in online and/or conventional voting. An amendment to CSSA Constitution is in effect immediately after its approval.
FINANCIAL RULES of UM-CSSA
(Ratified in July 2003, amendment ratified in December 2004)
1. Reimbursement Guideline
1) All expenses to be reimbursed are for UM-CSSA purpose only.
2) Reimbursement cannot be made unless the president or team chair(s) endorse the expense and sign the receipts. Any reimbursement over $20 (lump sum) shall be approved and signed by the president. The submitter of receipts and team chairs are entitled to explain the use of the funds to CSSA members upon request.
2. Financial Procedures
(1) CSSA has a non-profit-organization account with UM Credit Union (Account Holder Name: Chinese Students & Scholars Association (UM)). All CSSA financial activities, proceeds and expenses must be recorded and reflected through the aforementioned UM-CSSA account. Bank statements of this account must be kept for financial transparency and audit purposes.
(2) CSSA has two accounts in Student Organization Accounts Service (SOAS) under Michigan Student Assembly (MSA), which are used for funds given by MSA. Funds received by CSSA from MSA will be deposited into CSSA-SOAS account. The original receipts will be submitted to SOAS after CSSA keeps the copies of the original receipts for CSSA financial statement purposes.
(3) All financial activities must be recorded in a timely manner with the explanation of the activities such as time, location, purpose and organizers. All records should be attached with the receipts and will be published quarterly to CSSA members for financial transparency and audit purposes. All income checks must be copied and kept in file before deposit.
(4) CSSA account and its checks are used solely for CSSA activities purposes. Any personal usage is prohibited.
(5) All expenditure and reimbursement must be recorded and made by check. Cash is prohibited. All checks will be signed by CSSA treasurer. CSSA president’s signature is required for expenditure (lump sum) over $400.
(6) Any purchase of single item worthy of over $100 (fair market value) must be approved by the majority (>50%) of CSSA Executive Committee. Single items worthy of $200 (fair market value) must be approved by the majority (>50%) of CSSA executive committee and Council of Representative. Activities with a planned expenditure of over $500 (fair market value) must be approved by both CSSA executive committee and the Council of Representative committee (respectively >50% majority).
(7) Personal property damaged during official CSSA activities shall be examined, repaired and reimbursed, the amount of damage compensation will be determined by the original price, depreciation and related responsibilities therefrom. Refer to (6) for specific procedural requirement.
3 Financial Statements
(1) Financial statements should be published on the CSSA official webpage each quarter (no later than 6 weeks after the quarter ends). All the reimbursement certificates should be kept on records and made available to all CSSA members for auditing purposes.
(2) Quarterly financial statement shall include both cash flow statement (income and outcome) and balance sheet. The balance sheet should reflect the amount and location of assets owned by CSSA. The quarterly financial statement should be audited by the Council of Representative committee. All the original documents, including Credit Union account statements, shall be provided during the process auditing. Any CSSA member with questions on CSSA financial reports shall be allowed to participate in auditing.
4 Sponsorship Commission Rule*
1) CSSA accepts gifts and donations from all sources under mutual agreement.
2) Any fundraiser who obtains sponsorships for CSSA from commercials and industry shall be rewarded a commission fee of 20% of the value of the sponsorship. For sponsorships over $800 at a time from a single party, a commission fee of 25% of the value of the donation will be rewarded.
Any changes to this Financial Regulation must be proposed by CSSA Executive Committee, and approved by the majority of (>50%) CSSA Council of Representatives.
6. The right of explanation and interpretation of the financial rules is reserved for the CSSA Council of Representatives and the Executive Committee.
*a) If the sponsorship consists donations other than money, CSSA and the sponsor together shall assess an appropriate money value (not more than the fair market value) for that sponsorship and reward the fundraiser accordingly. CSSA Fundraising Team is available to assist in fundraising efforts for CSSA. The commission shall be rewarded to fundraisers only. Individual CSSA Fundraising Team member cannot receive commissions unless personal fundraising effort is totally separate from the fundraising team itself.
*b) The abovementioned funding sources shall not include the UM student funding agents (MSA, RSG, LSA, etc.), Chinese Consulates, other nonprofit organizations and governmental support. The eligibility of commission reward is subject to the approval of the majority of (>50%) CSSA Executive Committee.