Policy Development, Approval and Publication

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Responsible University Officer
Executive Associate Provost

Responsible Office
Office of the Provost

POLICY DEVELOPMENT, APPROVAL AND PUBLICATION

Policy Statement

All University Policies and Administrative Policies (see definitions) must be developed, approved and published in accordance with the standards and procedures outlined in this policy.  Policies meeting the definition of a University Policy or Administrative Policy are governed by this policy and its accompanying standards and procedures.  Departmental Policies (see definition) and associated Procedures (see definition) are not governed by this policy, but should also be clearly written and well communicated.

Definitions

University Policy:  A University Policy is a written statement of policy with broad application throughout the University and significant impact to the University if not followed.  University Policies may be developed by a department or unit or by University administration in order to express basic values of the University, ensure coordinated compliance with applicable laws and regulations, promote operational efficiencies, enhance the University’s mission, and/or reduce institutional risk.  The major difference between Departmental Policies and University Policies or Administrative Policies is whether the policy must be followed generally throughout the University rather than within a particular department.

Administrative Policy:  Administrative Policy is a written statement of policy that has general applicability to members of the University community, and is developed by a department or unit in order to establish operational rules, promote operational efficiencies, or, in some cases, ensure compliance with applicable laws.

Departmental Policy:  A Departmental Policy is one that applies only to the operation of an individual department or unit within the University.  Departmental Policy may exist in order to promote operational efficiencies or enhance the mission of the department or unit, but is not broadly applicable throughout the University.  Departmental Policy should address subjects that are not addressed by University Policy or Administrative Policy and may supplement, but must not be in conflict with University Policy or Administrative Policy.  Departmental Policy may be mandated by law and failure to comply may increase institutional risk.

Procedures:  Procedures contain a series of consecutive action steps related to a policy that specifies how a particular policy should be carried out.  Procedures may have detailed instructions, definitions, and/or forms that facilitate policy compliance.

Audience

This policy applies to any employee who develops, reviews, approves, publishes, or otherwise engages in the creation and promulgation of University Policy or Administrative Policy.

Reason for Policy

University Policies and Administrative Policies must be current, consistent, and available to all who are expected to comply with them.  This Policy Development, Approval and Publication policy is necessary to ensure consistency and clarity regarding University Policies and Administrative Policies.

Compliance

University Policies and Administrative Policies that do not follow this policy will not be considered official policy of the University and will not be posted to the official policy web site of the University (http://www.unc.edu/campus/policies.html).

 Roles and Responsibilities

Office of University Counsel:  University Counsel is responsible for ensuring that policies are consistent with all laws, regulations, and other statutory requirements and that policy content does not create legal liability for the University.  University Counsel is also responsible for determining who needs to approve individual policies, according to topic, content, and applicable laws, regulations, and related policies.  University Counsel will determine, in collaboration with the University Policy Committee if necessary, whether a proposed policy fits the definition and follows the requirements for a University Policy.

Responsible Office:  Under the direction of the Responsible University Officer, the Responsible Office develops and administers a particular policy and its procedures.  The Responsible Office is accountable for the accuracy of the subject matter, issuance, and timely updating of the policy.

Responsible University Officer:  The Responsible University Officer is the senior-level employee responsible for creating, implementing and updating policies in his or her area of jurisdiction.  As policy owners, these senior-level employees are responsible for following the policy development, approval, and publication procedures and standards set forth in this document.  They must also ensure that the policies for which they are responsible are consistent with other policies within their areas, communicated properly, reviewed regularly and updated as needed, and monitored for compliance and effectiveness.

University Policy Committee:  This oversight committee is appointed by the Provost and is responsible for overseeing the policy development, approval, and publication process as well as the periodic review of all University policies.  The Committee may provide input to the Office of University Counsel regarding the development, categorization, publication or review of University Policy.  The Committee may provide input to Vice Chancellors, divisions, or departments regarding the development, categorization, publication or review of Administrative Policy.

Vice Chancellors:  A group of senior University administrators convened regularly by the Chancellor who, together with the Chancellor, are responsible for establishing policy for the University.

Contacts

Subject

Contact

Telephone

Email

University Policies definition and publication Office of University Counsel 919-962-1219 will_tricomi@unc.edu
Other  policy questions Office of the Provost 919-962-1091 dpinkney@unc.edu

Document History

  • Effective Date:   April 9, 2013
  • Last Revised Date:  April 9, 2013                         

 

Policy Development, Approval and Publication Procedures

Standards for Policy Development

Policy Content:  The following sections must be considered for inclusion in each University Policy or Administrative Policy.  For example, if there are defined consequences for not complying with a policy, those consequences must be addressed in the Compliance section.  If there are terms that must be defined in order for the policy to be understood, those terms and their definitions must be included in the Definitions section following the policy statement.  A template containing the recommended format for and guidance regarding this content is attached to these procedures.

  • Policy Title
  • Responsible University Officer
  • Responsible Office
  • Policy Statement
  • Definitions
  • Audience
  • Reason for Policy
  • Compliance
  • Roles and Responsibilities
  • Applicable Regulations, Statutes and Related Policies
  • Name of  Contact for questions about the policy
  • Document History

The policy may also contain the following additional information if applicable.  This content may be a part of the policy document or may be inserted as links to documents residing elsewhere.

  • Standards
  • Procedures
  • Forms
  • Other Related Documents

Policy Approval

University Policies will, at a minimum, require approval by the Responsible University Officer, Office of University Counsel, and the Vice Chancellors of the University.  Administrative Policies may be approved by a Vice Chancellor with primary responsibility for the subject covered by the policy or a designee.  The Vice Chancellor with primary responsibility for developing the policy may request that a policy be reviewed by the Chancellor and Vice Chancellors.  Some University Policies or Administrative Policies may require external review and approval.

Policy Categorization Chart

Type of Policy

Examples

Approval Required By

Method of Policy Dissemination/Posting

University Policy
(see definition)
  • Institutional Data Governance Policy
  • Institutional Conflicts of Interest Policy
  • No Smoking Policy
Responsible University Officer, Office of University Counsel, and the Vice Chancellors of the University Official University policy website
Administrative Policy
(see definition)
  • Purchase Authorization Policy (Finance Policy 1226)
  • Payroll Distribution Policy (Finance Policy 1105)
  • OSR Effort Reporting Policy (OSR Policy 600.5)
Responsible University Officer and Vice Chancellor with primary responsibility for subject covered by the policy or his/her designee Departmental website with link from official University policy website
Departmental Policy
(see definition)
  • Campus Rec policies
  • Friday Center policies
  • Morehead Planetarium & Science Center policies
Vice Chancellor or department/unit head Departmental policy distribution method (website, signage, etc.)

Publication of University Policies

All approved University Policies will be published on the official policy site of the University (http://www.unc.edu/campus/policies.html).  Any policy published on or linked from the official policy site of the University must include a reference to the University employee or unit responsible for updating the policy (Responsible University Officer or Office) and be consistent with the Policy Development, Approval and Publication policy.

In order to promote consistency and ease of locating appropriate policies, University Policies and Administrative Policies will be housed in a common repository managed in WordPress, the University’s enterprise web content management system.

The Responsible University Officer or Office may use a variety of methods to communicate an approved University Policy or Administrative Policy.  These methods include mass email (see the policy on mass email at https://notify.isis.unc.edu/massmail), notice on the Responsible Office‘s website, notice through the University Gazette, and/or distributing hard copy via campus mail.

A University unit (e.g.,department, school, or division) may post Departmental Policies on its own website. If a unit wishes to also include University Policies on its website, it must do so by means of a link to the official policy site of the University to assure that the official, most up-to-date version is referenced.  That web site will be the only one that carries the assurance that the policies posted on it are current and correct. University administration reserves the right to remove non-official University Policies from unit-based web sites and/or update the official policy site of the University at any time.

Policy Review and Updates

Every policy will be reviewed periodically by the Responsible University Officer.  The Responsible University Officer will make or propose modifications on an as-needed basis to keep the policy current.  The document history must include the initial effective date and the last amended date.  The University Policy Committee will oversee the review process and the Responsible University Officer will report its completion to the committee.

Policies may be modified by the Responsible University Officer whenever necessary to comply with regulatory changes or changes in business operations.  Policy modifications will follow the same review and approval process as for new policies.

 Related Documents

1.  University Policy Template

2.  University Policy Committee Charter