Standing Rule Governing Requests to Address the Board of Trustees
In conjunction with each regular meeting of the University of Tennessee Board of Trustees (“Board”), an opportunity will be provided for students, employees, and members of the general public to address the Board, or a committee of the Board, concerning items on the meeting agenda and other issues germane to the responsibilities of the Board. The following procedures, terms, and conditions shall govern requests to address the Board.
All persons wishing to speak must preregister by completing a Request to Address the Board form and submitting it to the Board of Trustees Office no later than three (3) calendar days before the first day of a regular Board meeting. Regular Board meeting dates are posted on the Board website, http://trustees.tennessee.edu/. Persons will be preregistered on a “first come, first served” basis. A waiting list will not be kept from meeting to meeting.
Persons may request to speak about items on the meeting agenda or other issues germane to the responsibilities of the Board. The agenda for committee and Board meetings are published on the Board website, http://trustees.tennessee.edu/, approximately one week prior to each regular meeting. The Board will not hear speakers on grievances or appeals specific to individual students or employees or on pending or threatened litigation involving the University or University officials. If a speaker departs from the subject for which he or she preregistered to speak, the presiding officer will declare the speaker out of order and instruct the speaker to yield the podium.
In preparing the agenda, the Chair of the Board will allocate a maximum cumulative time of sixty (60) minutes during each regular meeting for persons to address the Board or a committee of the Board. Each speaker will be permitted to speak for a maximum of five (5) minutes. Speakers may not combine their five (5) minute allotment with another speaker and may not give any part of their time to another person. The time remaining for each speaker’s remarks will be displayed by a timing device within the meeting room.
Scheduling of Speakers
Persons who have preregistered to speak on permissible subjects in compliance with Section .02 will be scheduled on a “first come, first served” basis until the full sixty (60) minute period has been scheduled, except that no more than six (6) speakers will be scheduled to speak on the same subject.
Notice to Scheduled Speakers
After the preregistration deadline has passed, the Board of Trustees Office will notify registrants whether they have been scheduled to speak and, if so, the specific time and location at which they will speak. Scheduled speakers must be physically present to address the Board. Scheduled speakers who are unable to attend the meeting may not send a substitute.
Other Terms and Conditions
- Only one (1) speaker will be permitted to speak at a time.
- Speakers will not be allowed to use audio/visual presentation equipment during their remarks.
- Speakers may bring copies of written information to be distributed to the Board, but speakers are responsible for bringing thirty (30) copies. Speakers are not allowed to personally distribute copies to the Board or approach the Board table for any reason. When called to speak, speakers must provide the copies to the Assistant Secretary for distribution.
- Failure to adhere to this standing rule may result in the suspension of a person’s opportunity to address the Board at future meetings.
The presiding officer shall have the authority to modify the provisions of this rule in his or her discretion to extend the time allocated to permit additional speakers to address the Board or a committee of the Board, and make such other accommodations as may be necessary or advisable in his or her opinion to achieve the purposes of this rule.
The Board will not take any action during the part of a meeting designated for persons to address the Board. In the discretion of the presiding officer, however, a matter raised during an address to the Board may be referred for subsequent response by the University administration or for subsequent study or consideration by an appropriate Board committee. The presiding officer may also request or permit comment by the President or other members of the University administration.