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NJ Statutes Regarding Board Governance

The Role of the Board (Statute)

18A:64-6. The board of trustees of a State college shall have general supervision over and shall be vested with the conduct of the college. It shall have the power and duty to:

  • Adopt and use a corporate seal;
  • Determine the educational curriculum and program of the college consistent with the programmatic mission of the institution or approved by the Commission on Higher Education;
  • Determine policies for the organization, administration and development of the college;
  • Study the educational and financial needs of the college; annually acquaint the Governor and Legislature with the condition of the college; and prepare and present the annual budget to the Governor, the Division of Budget and Accounting in the Department of the Treasury and the Legislature in accordance with law;
  • Disburse all moneys appropriated to the college by the Legislature and all moneys received from tuition, fees, auxiliary services and other sources;
  • Direct and control expenditures and transfers of funds appropriated to the college and tuition received by the college, in accordance with the provisions of the State budget and appropriation acts of the Legislature, reporting changes and additions thereto and transfers thereof to the Director of the Division of Budget and Accounting in the State Department of the Treasury and as to funds received from other sources, direct and control expenditures and transfers in accordance with the terms of any applicable trusts, gifts, bequests, or other special provisions. All accounts of the college shall be subject to audit by the State at any time;
  • In accordance with the provisions of the State budget and appropriation acts of the Legislature, appoint and fix the compensation of a president of the college, who shall be the executive officer of the college and an ex officio member of the board of trustees, without vote, and shall serve at the pleasure of the board of trustees;
  • Notwithstanding the provisions of Title 1, Civil Service, of the Revised Statutes, upon nomination by the president appoint a treasurer and such deans and other professional members of the academic, administrative and teaching staffs as defined in section 13 of P.L.1986, c.42 (C.18A:64-21.2) as shall be required and fix their compensation and terms of employment in accordance with salary ranges and policies which shall prescribe qualifications for various classifications and shall limit the percentage of the educational staff that may be in any given classification;
  • Upon nomination by the president, appoint, remove, promote and transfer such other officers, agents or employees as may be required for carrying out the purposes of the college and assign their duties, determine their salaries and prescribe qualifications for all positions, all in accordance with the provisions of Title 11, Civil Service, of the Revised Statutes;
  • Grant diplomas, certificates and degrees;
  • Pursuant to the provisions of the “State College Contracts Law,” P.L.1986, c.43 (C.18A:64-52 et seq.) enter into contracts and agreements for the purchase of lands, buildings, equipment, materials, supplies and services; enter into contracts and agreements with the State or any of its political subdivisions or with the United States, or with any public body, department or other agency of the State or the United States or with any individual, firm, or corporation, which are deemed necessary or advisable by the board for carrying out the purposes of the college; if necessary, take and condemn land and other property in the manner provided by the “Eminent Domain Act of 1971,” P.L.1971, c.361 (C.20:3-1 et seq.), whenever authorized by law to purchase land or other property;
  • Adopt, after consultation with the president and faculty, bylaws and make and promulgate such rules, regulations and orders, not inconsistent with the provisions of this article, that are necessary and proper for the administration and operation of the college and the carrying out of its purposes;
  • Establish fees for room and board sufficient for the operation, maintenance, and rental of student housing and food service facilities;
  • Fix and determine tuition rates and other fees to be paid by students;
  • Accept from any government or governmental department, agency or other public or private body or from any other source grants or contributions of money or property, which the board may use for or in aid of any of its purposes;
  • Acquire by gift, purchase, condemnation or otherwise, own, lease, dispose of, use and operate property, whether real, personal or mixed, or any interest therein, which is necessary or desirable for college purposes;
  • Employ architects to plan buildings; secure bids for the construction of buildings and for the equipment thereof; make contracts for the construction of buildings and for equipment; and supervise the construction of buildings;
  • Manage and maintain, and provide for the payment of all charges and expenses in respect to all properties utilized by the college;
  • Borrow money for the needs of the college, as deemed requisite by the board, in such amounts, and for such time and upon such terms as may be determined by the board, provided that this borrowing shall not be deemed or construed to create or constitute a debt, liability, or a loan or pledge of the credit, or be payable out of property or funds, other than moneys appropriated for that purpose, of the State;
  • Authorize any new program, educational department or school consistent with the institution’s programmatic mission or approved by the commission;

(Deleted by amendment, P.L.1994, c.48); and pursuant to the “State College Contracts Law,” P.L.1986, c.43 (C.18A:64-52 et seq.), award contracts and agreements for the performance of any construction work or the furnishing of any materials or supplies to the lowest responsible bidder whose bid, conforming to the invitation for bids, will be most advantageous to the State colleges.

Board Meeting and Organization (Statute)

18A: 64-4. Each such board shall meet and organize annually at a regular meeting held during the second week of September, by the election of a chairman, vice chairman and such other officers as the board shall determine. Such officers shall serve until the following September meeting and until their successors are elected and qualified. Vacancies in such offices shall be filled in the same manner for the unexpired term only.

The board may meet at such other times and at such places as it may designate.

Board Membership, Terms, and Removal (Statute)

18A:64-3. The composition and size of the board of trustees shall be determined by the board; however, each board shall have not less than seven nor more than 15 members.

The members shall be appointed by the Governor with the advice and consent of the Senate. Each board of trustees shall recommend potential new members to the Governor.

The terms of office of appointed members shall be for six years beginning on July 1 and ending on June 30. Each member shall serve until his successor shall have been appointed and qualified and vacancies shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointments for the remainders of the unexpired terms.

Any member of a board of trustees may be removed by the Governor for cause upon notice and opportunity to be heard.

NJ P.L. 2021, c.250 (C.18A:3B-6.3). This Act (in full) requires members of governing boards of public institutions of higher education to complete training program developed by the institution in consultation with Secretary of Higher Education.

Student Representatives (Statute)

18A:64-3.1. The board of trustees of any State college established pursuant to chapter 64 of Title 18A of the New Jersey Statutes shall provide for the election of two student representatives as provided herein, who shall be full-time, regularly matriculated students in good academic standing, and who shall be 18 years of age or older and citizens of the United States, to be elected by the students in the manner provided herein to serve on the board of trustees of that college for terms of two years commencing at the next organization of the board.

In order to implement the provisions of this section, each board of trustees shall schedule a public hearing on the question of the student election. After the public hearing, the board, at its regularly scheduled meeting in March following the effective date of this act, shall determine whether the students are to be elected by the student body at large or by the members of the student government association. Except that, for Thomas A. Edison State College, the method of the selection and the designation of eligible academic status of the student representatives shall be determined by the board of that college.

For the first election held pursuant to this section, one student shall be elected for a one year term as a full voting member, and one student shall be elected for two years, but shall serve as an alternate member during the first year and as a voting member during the second year.

At each subsequent election, one student shall be elected for two years, but shall serve during the first year as an alternate member, and as a voting member during the second year.

Any vacancies which occur shall be filled by the student governing body for the unexpired term only.

The standards for eligibility for student representatives on the board of trustees shall be the same as those required for other student government officers.

The student members shall be entitled to full participation in all activities of the board except that they shall not participate in:

(1) Any matter involving the employment, appointment, termination of employment, terms and conditions of employment, evaluation of the performance of, promotion or disciplining of any specific prospective officer or employee or current officer or employee employed or appointed by the board, unless all the individual employees or appointees whose rights could be adversely affected request in writing that the matter or matters be discussed at a public meeting.

(2) Any matter involving the purchase, lease, acquisition or sale of real property with public funds, the setting of banking rates or investment of public funds, where it could adversely affect the public interest if discussion of these matters were disclosed.

(3) Any pending or anticipated litigation in which the board is, or may become, a party, where it could adversely affect the public interest if discussion of these matters were disclosed, or any matters falling within the attorney-client privilege, to the extent that confidentiality is required in order for the attorney to exercise his ethical duties as a lawyer.

Upon assuming office, the students shall agree to adhere to such standards of responsibility and confidentiality as are established by the board of trustees.

President; Powers and Duties (Statute)

18A:64-8.  The president of a state college shall be responsible to its board of trustees and shall have such powers as shall be requisite, for the executive management and conduct of the college in all departments, branches and divisions, and for the execution and enforcement of the bylaws, rules, regulations and orders governing the management, conduct and administration of the college.