Whereas, Local academic senates are experiencing legal challenges by local college administrations, boards of trustees and individuals in an effort to undermine their influence in the shared governance processes; and
Whereas, Local academic senates and individual faculty within their membership have been named as both petitioners and respondents in recent civil court proceedings;
Resolved, That the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges undertake a comprehensive review of enabling legislation, statute and case law that identifies the purpose, scope and authority of the state and local senates;
Resolved, That the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges, upon completion of this review and with the assistance of legal counsel, facilitate legislative and legal clarification of both the California Education Code and Title 5 Regulations in order to make clear the legal status and authority of the state and local senates; and
Resolved that the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges explore the possibility of purchasing and maintaining an insurance policy to provide all academic senates legal counsel and representation to protect all academic senates and senate officers in the event of their being sued for discharging their duties.
Breakout was held at Spring 2009 Plenary Session. However the goal of this resolution is to clarify laws and regulations that are intentionally the way they are because that was the best that could be negotiated at that time. Such a clarification would only serve to strengthen, or weaken existing positions, neither of which would be desired by one or more of the various constituent groups. Further action is not feasible.