BYLAWS OF THE CAMPUS SUSTAINABILITY FUND

The mission of the Campus Sustainability Fund is to create a sustainable campus and foster an environmentally conscious University culture by funding student-led projects that lessen the University of Washington’s environmental impact.

Section 1.1 – Powers and Voting
The CSF Committee (hereafter, “the Committee”) has authority over the Campus Sustainability Fund (CSF). A simple majority of the Committee’s full membership is required to allocate funds and make any other official decisions, except as provided for elsewhere in these bylaws.

Section 1.2 – Member Number & Representation
The Committee shall consist of seven student voting members and at least three (3) ex-officio, non-voting advisors, as follows:

Voting Members

  • 1 student to be appointed by the Associated Students of the University of Washington (ASUW) Senate;  

  • 3 students to be appointed by the ASUW Board of Directors;

  • 2 students to be appointed by the Graduate and Professional Student Senate; and

  • 1 student to be appointed by the Environmental Stewardship Committee (ESC).

Non-Voting, Ex-Officio Members

  • 1 to be appointed by the Faculty Senate; 

  • 1 to be appointed by the Associate Vice President of Facilities Services;

  • 1 to be appointed by the Provost; and

  • 1 UW Sustainability Representative

Additional members  as described below

Students from other academic departments and campus units partnering with the CSF can be appointed as Non-Voting Ex-Officio Members (Students) with Committee approval. The ex-officio members of the Committee shall attend Committee meetings as nonvoting members, and the Committee can invite experts/guests to provide information and expertise as needed. 

Section 1.3 – Duties of the Campus Sustainability Fund Committee
It shall be the duty of the Committee members to:

  • It shall be the duty of the Committee members to:

  • Attend weekly Committee meetings;

  • Attend Committee retreats on a quarterly basis or as scheduled;

  • Review project applications and determine allocation of funds;

  • Oversee the annual process of reapplying for funding to the Services and Activities Fee (SAF) Committee and other funding sources; 

  • Evaluate CSF operations & processes biennially (see Section 5.4); and

  • Lead campus and community outreach to improve campus environmental and social sustainability, while engaging the student body.

  • Devoting an average of 1-2 hours per week outside of meeting and retreat times to promote the CSF’s goals, mission, and its projects to the campus community is strongly encouraged.

  • Members should report back to their appointing bodies, as requested, regarding the actions of the CSF.

Apart from their normal function as a part of the Committee, a member has no individual authority.

Section 1.4 – Officers
The Committee shall have two officers, a Chair and a Vice Chair:

  • The Chair shall preside at all meetings of the Committee, acting as facilitator and holding meetings to the agenda in a timely fashion. The Chair will write and send meeting agendas to all Committee members at least 24 hours prior to each meeting. The Chair must be a student member of the Committee. The Chair will receive a quarterly stipend of $333.33 for a gross total of $1,000 over the course of the academic year.  It will be the duty of the Chair to serve as the “face” of the CSF on campus and to work with the CSF Coordinator to develop and present reports to the Services & Activities Fee (SAF) Committee as required.  These reports should include a brief description of all projects funded and the reasons for which they were approved.

  • The Vice Chair will assist the Chair with their duties. In the absence of the Chair, the Vice Chair shall assume all duties of the Chair. The Vice Chair must be a student member of the Committee. The Vice Chair shall also serve as Committee Clerk and take and distribute minutes after each meeting, or appoint other Committee members or staff to take and distribute minutes as appropriate.  The Vice Chair will assist with reports to the SAF Committee, as needed.

At the end of spring quarter the Committee will accept committee chair nominations for the following year. All members who will be returning the next year are eligible to run. If no returning member wishes to run for chair the election of chair will be postponed until the fall. The chair will be selected by majority vote of the current committee. The vice chair will be selected at the beginning of fall quarter by majority vote of the current committee. In both elections the candidate is eligible to vote. 

Section 1.5 – Terms of Office
Each member of the Committee, with the exception of the chair, shall be appointed at the end of spring quarter for one academic year to  begin the following fall quarter, the chair shall enter office at the end of spring quarter to assist the coordinator over the summer. 

  • Student terms will begin starting  in autumn quarter and continue through the academic year.

  • Student Officers (Chair and Vice Chair) will hold office for one academic year. 

  • Faculty & Staff terms will run from the first day of fall quarter for 1 year. If an ex-officio advisory changes offices during their term, their appointing office is responsible for finding a replacement.

Student Committee members may serve no more than two consecutive terms, but the total number of terms they may serve is not limited.

Section 1.5.1 – Interim Advisory Committee 
In Spring of an academic year, the CSF Committee will self-nominate and appoint Committee members to constitute an interim advisory committee to serve during the summer months between academic years and until the complete establishment of the subsequent year’s CSF Committee. The interim advisory committee will convene and be available by email or phone as needed to review current project and fund activities and advise CSF staff on pressing matters.   

It is required that interim advisory committee members have either served on the CSF committee the previous academic year or been appointed to serve on the committee for the subsequent academic year. Any votes made by the interim advisory committee must adhere to the rules of quorum set by the full committee. 

Section 1.6 – Member Qualifications
All student members of the Committee must be registered (full- or part-time) students at the UW Seattle campus during their term of office and remain enrolled through Spring quarter. Staff and faculty members of the Committee must be currently employed by the UW Seattle campus.

Section 1.7 – Member Replacement
A Committee member (including officer positions) may be removed by unanimous vote of the other Committee members for unjustifiable absence from three or more Committee meetings or two or more Committee retreats, conflict of interest, or other appropriate reasons. In the event that a Committee member is removed or resigns, the original appointing body will select a replacement. The new Committee member will serve the remainder of the original member’s term.

Section 1.8 – Conflict of Interest
The Committee shall conduct itself in such a way that conflicts of interest are minimized and all potential conflicts of interest are made public. Each Committee member must declare current and past connection(s) to group(s) if said group(s) is/are presenting a Letter of Intent (LOI) or Full Proposal to the Committee. Where appropriate, Committee members are required to recuse themselves  from voting on grant allocations for projects proposed by groups with which they are affiliated. For such votes, the “full Committee membership” as defined for voting majority purposes shall be decreased to account for the Committee member's recusal.
 

Section 2.1 – Duties of the CSF Coordinator and Outreach Coordinator

One 0.80 FTE Professional Staff CSF Coordinator will manage the operations of the CSF. The CSF Coordinator exists to meet the needs of the Committee and the CSF, and to ensure the prudent management of the monies allocated by the SAF Committee. The CSF Coordinator reports to the UW Sustainability, but will also take substantial direction from the Committee.

The general function of the CSF Coordinator is to:

  • Assist in project implementation;

  • Coordinate follow-up reporting with funded projects;

  • Create and coordinate transparency systems for the Fund;

  • Build relationships with students, faculty, and staff across campus;

  • Work with students, faculty, and staff to develop new and innovative project ideas;

  • Provide economic, ecological, and social analysis to support the Committee’s decision-making process;

  • In consultation with the Committee, coordinate the annual SAF reapplication process.

  • Facilitate the Biennial Evaluation Process(see Section 5.4).

There will be one 0.5 FTE undergraduate Outreach Coordinator. The Outreach Coordinator exists to engage students in CSF, and to build the capacity of the student body to take part in CSF projects. This position reports to the CSF Coordinator or other appropriate UW Sustainability staff member. 

The general function of the Outreach Coordinator is to:

  • Perform outreach to students and registered student organizations (RSOs); 

  • Update and maintain the CSF website;

  • Provide technical assistance to students proposing projects;

  • Meet with students by appointment or during publically scheduled drop-in hours to support students proposing projects;

  • Provide general support to the Committee and the CSF Coordinator;

  • Assist the CSF Coordinator with the Biennial Evaluation Process (see Section 5.4);

  • Assist the CSF Coordinator with the annual SAF reapplication process.

 

There will be one 0.5 FTE undergraduate Project Development Specialist. The Project Development Specialist exists to engage students in the CSF, and to build the capacity of the student body to take part in CSF projects. This position reports to the CSF Coordinator or other appropriate UW Sustainability staff member. 
 
The general function of the Project Development Specialist is to:

  • Assist in the solicitation and vetting of project proposals from UW students, faculty and staff. 

  • Carry out idea consultation meetings pre-application to help evolve and guide LOI submissions. 

  • Help projects obtain required approvals, connect to resources, and improve viability of successful implementation. 

  • Carryout meetings post approval to advise projects on next steps for project implementation and outreach strategy. 

  • Serve as point-of-contact for proposal related questions. 

  • Collect quarterly project reports from active CSF projects, advise CSF Team on follow-ups based on report details.

  • Meet with University stakeholders, build internal/external partnerships. 

  • Assist CSF Coordinator with various administrative tasks. 

  • Carry through on strategic initiatives autonomously and as assigned by Coordinator.

There will be one 0.35 FTE undergraduate Creative Assistant. This position reports to the CSF Coordinator. 
 

  • The general function of the Creative Assistant is to:

  • Graphically promote Funding Cycle deadlines.

  • Create and design materials for tabling.

  • Create visuals for social media content.

  • Create CSF Infographics that visually display key metrics / data.

  • Consult with CSF Staff and Committee Members for strategic prioritization of future creative undertakings.

  • Produce complete deliverable(s) in both physical and digital forms. 

Section 2.2 – Hiring and Evaluating the CSF Coordinator and Outreach Coordinator

The Coordinators will be hired via open recruitment by the Sustainability Office. Candidates must understand and agree to comply with all of the CSF bylaws and supporting documents. The Committee will appoint at least one of its members to the hiring team of each position.

At least one member of the Committee will be part of the biennial evaluation (see Section 5.4) of each position, and the Committee may at any time recommend that the Sustainability Office dismisses the CSF Coordinator or Outreach Coordinator in response to poor performance. Only the Sustainability Office has the authority to dismiss these positions.

Section 2.3 - CSF Intern Hiring and Management

The CSF Coordinator and/or Outreach Coordinator are able to appoint interns to specific projects as needed.  Interns are primarily volunteer positions, though paid positions may be created using funds either internal or external to the CSF, and as the CSF Committee suggests.  Interns can be appointed through an open hire and interview process, or through informal discussions between CSF staff and a party interested in a specific project or position.  Paid positions must arise as a result of a competitive hiring process, while unpaid positions can rely on a more informal process as previously described.  Committee members cannot take paid or unpaid intern positions.

The two Coordinators will work closely together with the expectation that these roles will be augmented as necessary by the Committee.
 

Section 3.1A – Operational Budget for Fund Coordination
The Committee, UW Sustainability, and the two staff members shall strive to keep administrative and coordination costs below 20% of the CSF’s total budget. Spending within the budget allocated for Fund coordination must be approved by the CSF Coordinator (after the Committee has approved the budget); spending above that limit must be approved by the Committee. All spending must be done in accordance with all Finance & Facilities, University of Washington, and Washington State protocols and regulations. 

Section 3.1B – Staff Compensation 
Funds for the total compensation of the CSF Coordinator and Outreach Coordinator are allocated preliminarily as part of the annual SAF reallocation process, and adjusted once SAF allocates a final amount annually. The amount of the CSF Coordinator’s compensation will be in line with union and University of Washington requirements, including appropriate tuition waiver.  These funds are to be withdrawn from the Operational Budget.

Section 3.2 – The Projects Budget
The vast majority of funds awarded to the CSF will be earmarked for projects.  It is highly encouraged that projects are structured to include as much student participation as possible, and they are required to include outreach and education components.  If additional funding is needed that exceeds the initial allocation, the project leader is required to report to the Committee with a detailed request, which requires approval by the Committee.

Section 3.3 – Outreach and Events Budget
The CSF will hold less than 3% of the total budget for the use of funding outreach activities and special events, such as the annual Sustainability Summit.  Spending within the 3% of the budget allocated for outreach and events must be approved by the Outreach Coordinator and CSF Coordinator (after the Committee has approved the budget); spending above that limit must be approved by the Committee. All spending must be done in accordance with all Finance & Facilities, University of Washington, and Washington State protocols and regulations.  

Section 3.4 – Large Projects Budget
The CSF will maintain a Large Projects Budget, separate from the Projects Budget, to support any project requests that amount to greater than $90,000. The Large Projects Budget will be grown by incremental percentages annually at the discretion of the committee.  Annual increases to the Large Projects Budget should not exceed 10% of the given fiscal year’s SAF award. 

Section 3.5 – Mini Grants Budget
The CSF will maintain a Mini Grants Budget, separate from the Projects Budget, to support any project requests amounting up to $1,000. The Mini Grants Budget will be restricted to a $5,000 allocation at the beginning of each year, but additional funding can be allocated throughout the year as needed with committee approval.
 

Section 4.1 – Allocation of Funds by the Committee
As noted in Section 1.1, all allocation of funds to submitted projects must be decided by a simple majority vote of the voting Committee membership. The Committee may elect to fund only a portion of a proposal.

Section 4.2 – Project Requirements 
Projects requesting funds will be evaluated based on the how they address the following: 

  • Sustainable Impact: Projects must improve the sustainability of UW’s campus and/or operations. Sustainable impact encompasses both social sustainability - cultural awareness & preservation, representation or engagement of underrepresented communities, diverse and interdisciplinary collaboration – and environmental sustainability – reducing carbon emissions, energy use, water use, waste, pollutants, and toxins, as well as improving living systems, biodiversity, environmental justice and equity. Projects focused on social sustainability should also include an environmentally sustainable component, although this part does not have to be the project’s focus.

  • Leadership & Student Involvement: Staff and student roles must be clearly outlined and reflected in the proposed project budget. Projects must demonstrate some substantial degree of student leadership or student involvement throughout the application and implementation process to be considered for funding. Additionally, projects initiated by students will be prioritized.

  • Education, Outreach, & Behavior Change: Projects must include educational and outreach components that help cultivate an aware and engaged campus community.

  • Feasibility, Accountability, & Sustainability: Applicants must demonstrate that they have or can attain the technical knowledge, necessary approvals, and project management skills to complete projects successfully. The Fund encourages the use of a faculty or staff mentor, appropriate department support, and/or a line item in the budget for project management.  CSF funds must be used in a responsible manner—to be determined by the Committee.  Projects requiring ongoing maintenance or staffing not funded by the CSF should demonstrate a plan to meet long-term needs.

Applicant Eligibility: The applicant must meet at least one of the following criteria:

  • UW Seattle registered student WITH UW DEPARTMENT/ENTITY SPONSOR (this must be a campus entity/department or Registered Student Organization with a budget number who can administer the awarded funds)

  • UW Seattle Registered Student Organization (For student groups of five or more who would like to become registered as an RSO, please visit http://depts.washington.edu/sao/rso_register.php)

  • UW Seattle student that has graduated but submitted an LOI or project proposal within one quarter of their graduation date. 

  • UW Seattle Faculty

  • UW Seattle Staff

Section 4.3 – Funding Preferences 
The Committee and staff will prioritize proposed projects based on the following considerations:

  • Preference will be given to projects that align with the UW’s commitment to sustainability (reference the University’s Climate Action Plan) 

  • Strong preference will be given to projects with a clear, strong student-participation component. For the purposes of this section, postdoctoral researchers and other similar individuals are not considered students. This is evaluated at the discretion of the Committee on several factors, including: 

    • Ratio of funded student positions to funded non-student positions; 

    • Involvement of targeted student groups and organizations; and

    • Amount of student body potentially involved in project at any stage.

  • Preference will be given to projects that can obtain matching funds from sources other than the CSF, or to projects that are able to repay the CSF through a revolving loan fund or other mechanisms;

  • Preference will be given to projects impacting UW Seattle sustainability “closer to home.”

  • Promotes equity and engages diverse, underrepresented groups on campus.

  • Preference will be given to projects that are complete, comprehensive, and ready for implementation at the time of proposal rather than feasibility studies or pilot projects. Any group requesting funding for a feasibility study or pilot project must include the following components in their proposed project:

    • The proposal must include an actionable second phase. The second phase must, to the best knowledge of the group, be realistic to implement given that their study shows it to be feasible.

    • Whether or not the study or pilot shows the second phase to be feasible, the project must result in a written report that summarizes all relevant findings and is submitted to the CSF. The CSF may use this information to aid and inform future projects in whatever way they see fit.

  • For projects containing budget items related to student funding:

    • CSF prefers to fund time and labor expended by UW students working on CSF projects where and when that funding supports the creation of a formal internship under a Faculty member and/or Campus Unit.

    • Preference will be given to projects that clearly explain the project tasks to be completed during any paid time funded by the CSF.  In addition, it is strongly encouraged that projects include in their budgets any available information that explains and justifies the requested amount of paid time funded by the CSF.

  • In considering projects that are undertaken by campus departments (whether in close partnership with students or led primarily by staff), CSF prefers to use its funds strategically, investing in one-time transformational interventions in a campus operation, rather than funding routine operations or planned near-term innovations. In considering projects undertaken by campus departments, preference will be given to projects that demonstrate they are not likely to be undertaken in the near future without CSF funding, and are likely to be financially and operationally sustainable over the long term.

  • CSF recommends that projects over $30,000 complete a feasibility study or submit a previously completed feasibility study.

    • Projects may also justify why they do not require a feasibility study.

    • CSF reserves the right to request a feasibility study from any project.

  • Recurring events are eligible for funding, but such eligibility is at the discretion of the committee. Recurring events typically should show one of the following in order to be eligible for funding after the first award:

    • Innovation or improvement upon previous iteration of event; or

    • Additional funding from non-CSF sources.

Section 4.4 - Funding Restrictions

  • CSF will not fund time and labor expended by UW faculty working on CSF projects.

  • While CSF supports celebratory and recognition events, the CSF will not specifically fund food, drinks, or for-sale merchandise as part of project budgets.

  • Line item requests for travel funding are not encouraged, but will be considered on a case by case basis. For example, travel that is essential to the project’s success is more likely to be considered than travel that is included for convenience.

  • CSF funds are not intended to cover student tuition. Projects including tuition are unlikely to receive funding for the tuition portion of their proposal.

Section 4.5 - Small Projects Process

  • Projects asking for less than $1,000 are welcome to submit a request through the Small Projects process on a rolling basis throughout the school year. Small Projects must submit an LOI form to be considered for funding in the Small Projects Process; these projects will be evaluated based on this LOI. Small Project LOIs must contain a detailed budget and timeline. The Committee will review all LOIs and make a funding decision within two weeks (barring school holidays or breaks). 

    • The Committee will award Small Projects up to a total of $5,000 per year through the Small Projects process. 

    • The Committee reserves the right to determine that a project submitted through the Small Projects process should be moved to the full proposal process.

Section 4.6 - Other Rules Governing CSF Funds

  • Funds allocated to a project that has not started with 6 months of the original project timeline may be rescinded by the CSF Committee and reallocated for future projects. Projects may apply for an extension if they wish to amend their timeline.

  • CSF funds are not to be used or reallocated for purposes other than those described in this document and the funded project proposal. A full budget amendment must be submitted to the Committee for approval prior to any further expenditures. 

  • Fund recipients must keep a full accounting of their expenditures and report the status of their budget and project to the CSF Coordinator on a monthly basis.  At the end of project, fund recipients will be expected to submit a full report of the impact their project has had on student leadership, student volunteerism, students’ awareness of the issue(s) addressed by the project, and campus sustainability.

  • CSF funds shall not be used for research projects unless such projects include an actionable component. 

    • An actionable component is, or is similar to, a feasibility study that leads to a project-based, actionable component or pilot project. 

  • Requests for additional funding can be considered on an ad-hoc basis by the CSF committee.

Section 5.1 – Accountability to the Student Body
The CSF shall be accountable to the student body to the greatest extent possible, and therefore shall:

  • Make its records available to the public, including project funding decisions;

  • Utilize creative mechanisms to engage the larger student body in setting funding priorities; and

  • Publicly post the end product of the Biennial Evaluation Process.

Section 5.2 – Accountability of Projects
The coordinator will keep the Committee updated on the status of the Fund’s active projects. If a project is deemed by the Committee to not be making satisfactory progress based on the project timeline, the Committee can determine a course of action on a case by case basis. Project close-out reporting must include a budget detailing the spending of all funds and the amount of student involvement. Upon review of the report, the CSF Coordinator shall judge whether the funds were spent within the scope of the project. If the CSF Coordinator feels the funds were spent outside of the project scope, the CSF Coordinator may recommend that the Committee require return of the funds.

The Committee reserves the right to re-evaluate projects and retract funding if satisfactory progress is not made based on the project timeline, or if projects undergo significant changes in scope. Funding may be retracted upon  deliberation and vote  by the Committee.

Section 5.3 – Records and Reports
The CSF must keep:

  • Minutes of all Committee meetings indicating their time and place, the names of those present, and the proceedings thereof;

  • Adequate and correct books and records of CSF accounts;

  • Record of projects selected each year and the funds allocated to each;

  • Reports made back to the CSF on completed projects and all annual reports received from projects with ongoing benefits; and

  • Copies of all biennial reports issued  by the CSF.

Section 5.4 – Biennial Evaluation 
The Committee and Coordinators are responsible for a comprehensive Biennial Evaluation Process to review the performance, structure, and goals of the Fund. This may suggest an amendment to these bylaws, or a major change to the structure of the Fund (See Article 7 for the process to change these bylaws). To the extent possible, this evaluation will be completed before reapplication to the SAF Committee, and its recommendations will be incorporated into the SAF request. The Committee is responsible for formulating the line-item budget allocations for the following year under the new SAF allocations, and developing a Memorandum of Understanding with UW Sustainability.
 

Section 6.1 – SAF Reapplication
The CSF Coordinator & Committee Chair will determine a budget request and budget questionnaire for the SAF Committee that is in line with CSF’s mission and requirements (Reference Section 4.2). The Committee must approve the proposed budget and questionnaire language before their submission to the SAF Committee. The CSF Coordinator and Committee representatives will be responsible for attending the SAF orientation and budget hearings. They will be jointly responsible for advocating for the CSF budget and mission statement.

Section 6.2 - Funding from other Campus Entities
To the extent possible, the CSF will work to develop strategic partnerships with other groups on campus for funding and in-kind support. A Memorandum of Understanding between the CSF and the relevant campus entity providing additional funding will be developed to outline the nature of this relationship and any stipulations. The outside funding and MOU must be approved by the Committee.

Section 6.3 - Donations & Grants Received
Donations & grants received by the CSF will be allocated at the Committee’s discretion unless otherwise requested by the donor. 
 

A two-thirds (2/3) majority vote by the voting members of the existing Committee may amend, create, or repeal portions of these bylaws, unless doing so would materially and adversely affect the mission of the CSF.