Washington State University
EXECUTIVE POLICY MANUAL

Executive Policy #5
Revision Approved February 7, 2008

Policy Approval and Distribution

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SUMMARY

University policies and procedures are to be appropriately approved, published, and distributed in designated and authorized publications and web locations. This policy outlines the drafting, review, approval, and distribution processes for administrative, business, and safety policies and procedures.

 

POLICY

University personnel are to obtain appropriate approvals prior to publication of University policies and procedures.

University policies are to be consistent with provisions of the Washington Administrative Code and the Revised Code of Washington.

University policies and procedures are to be published and distributed in designated and approved publications and approved web locations.

Advisory guidelines which supplement University policies and procedures may be published and distributed from departmental websites.

APPLICABILITY

This policy applies to University policies, procedures, and advisory guidelines related to administrative, business, and safety functions that affect many or most University units.

Policies and procedures that affect operations at a single University campus; i.e., WSU Spokane, WSU Tri-Cities, WSU Vancouver; are reviewed and approved by the responsible chancellor and distributed on the campus website. Such policies and procedures are to be consistent with provisions of the Washington Administrative Code. Preliminary review by applicable offices indicated under "Preliminary Review/Approval" below should be considered, particularly the Office of Internal Audit and the Office of the Attorney General.

RESPONSIBILITY

Responsible Office

The office which implements and administers the policy/procedure is responsible for preparing the document in accordance with the requirements of this policy.

Procedures, Records, and Forms

The Office of Procedures, Records, and Forms manages a central policies website and coordinates the publication of all items included on the website. The office also drafts and edits the Business Policies and Procedures Manual and Safety Policies and Procedures Manual.

Responsible Director

The responsible director approves procedure statements or forwards them to the responsible vice president for approval. The responsible director also approves advisory guideline statements.

Responsible Vice President

The responsible vice president or designee approves policies or forwards them to the University's council of executive officers for approval.

A vice president may designate a subordinate to approve policies or a specified subset of policies by sending a signed memorandum to the Office of Procedures, Records, and Forms. Such a designation remains in effect until the vice president or designee no longer occupy the position held at the time of designation or until rescinded by the vice president.

Executive Officers

The University's council of executive officers approves those University policies referred to it by the individual vice presidents.

DEFINITIONS

University Policy

A policy is a plan or general course of action, having broad application throughout the University, intended to influence and determine decisions, actions, and other matters. A policy helps to ensure compliance with applicable laws and regulation, promotes operational efficiencies, promotes one or more of the University's missions, and/or reduces risk to the institution.

University Procedure

A procedure is an established method of implementing a University policy.

Advisory Guideline

An advisory guideline provides a recommended, but not required, method for implementing an administrative process.

Recommended Format

The recommended standard format for policy and procedure statements includes the following elements: effective date, revision date, policy or overview, applicability, responsibility, definitions, and procedures.

The recommended standard format for advisory guideline statements includes the following elements: effective date, revision date, reference to the related approved University policy, applicability, guidelines.

PROCEDURE

Analysis/Drafting

Usually the department responsible for implementing and administering the policy/procedure analyzes the issues and conceptualizes the substance of the policy/procedure.

Approval to Proceed

When seeking major policy changes, before proceeding further with policy development, the implementing department routes a summary of the proposal with an analysis to the responsible vice president through the responsible director. The vice president determines whether or not policy development will proceed. NOTE: This step is not required for draft proposals that do not include major policy statements.

Draft Preparation

The implementing department prepares a first draft if the document is to be published in the Executive Policy Manual or in another approved publication other than the Business Policies and Procedures Manual or Safety Policies and Procedures Manual.

BPPM/SPPM

The responsible department contacts the Office of Procedures, Records, and Forms if the document is to be published in the Business Policies and Procedures Manual (BPPM) or Safety Policies and Procedures Manual (SPPM). The Office of Procedures, Records, and Forms prepares the draft based upon source materials and interviews with departmental personnel.

Preliminary Review/Approval

Responsible Department / Procedures, Records, and Forms

The responsible department or Procedures, Records, and Forms routes the first draft to constituencies immediately involved with the proposed policy.

Responsible Director

After considering input from the constituencies, the responsible department or Procedures, Records, and Forms routes the proposed policy with a supporting policy analysis to the responsible director. The director may take one of the following actions regarding the proposed policy:

The Attorney General's Office reviews the proposal for consistency with state and federal laws, rules and regulations.

When appropriate, the Council of Deans reviews the proposal to determine the potential effects on subordinate units and to assess the administrative feasibility of the proposed policy.

The Faculty Senate provides advice and recommendations regarding any proposed policy that could affect academic functions.

The Office of Procedures, Records, and Forms reviews proposals for consistency with existing policies and procedures published in the Business Policies and Procedures Manual and Safety Policies and Procedures Manual. Procedures, Records, and Forms also reviews the procedure for potential impact on University units other than the implementing unit.

The Office of Internal Audit reviews proposed policies for the inclusion of proper internal controls to control, monitor, and safeguard University and state assets.

If a proposal is substantially revised, it may be routed back to the reviewing organizations, offices, and constituencies for another review round.

Final Approval

Determination of the appropriate authority for final approval of a policy or procedure is dependent upon the judgment of the involved University officials. Generally, when in doubt regarding level of final approval, the responsible department seeks approval from a higher administration level. The following provides guidance for determining the appropriate approval level.

Procedures

A director may approve procedural statements or changes. However, procedures with broad University impact and scope should be approved by the responsible vice president.

Policies

Policy statements or policy changes are routed to the responsible vice president or designee for approval. The vice president may approve the proposal or take it to the University's council of executive officers for final approval.

Comments

When a director or vice president forwards a proposal for approval, he or she may include reviewers' comments not incorporated into the draft.

Considerations

Reviewers are to consider a proposal's consistency with University priorities and directions, impact upon operations, and ease of administration.

Notification of Decisions

The responsible director or vice president informs reviewing and implementing organizations of approval decisions regarding the proposal.

Implementation

After final approval, the policy is implemented and distributed in accordance with distribution requirements described below.

Distribution

After the proposed policy/procedure is approved, the responsible department ensures that the document is published in an approved official publication.

Approved Publications

Approved official policy and procedure publications/websites and responsible offices:

Administrative Professional Personnel Handbook Human Resource Services
Academic Catalog Registrar
Business Policies and Procedures Manual Procedures, Records, and Forms
Educational Policies and Procedures Manual Provost's Office/Faculty Senate
Executive Policy Manual
  
University executive officers and Procedures, Records, and Forms
Faculty Manual Provost's Office/Faculty Senate
Graduate School Policies and Procedures Graduate School
Laboratory Safety Manual Environmental Health and Safety
OGRD Memorandums Office of Research,
Office of Grant and Research Development
Safety Policies and Procedures Manual Procedures, Records, and Forms

Departments are not to independently publish policies having University-wide impact in locations other than those noted above.

Official and approved University policies and procedures are not to be republished on departmental websites. Departmental websites should link to official policy/procedure sites when references are required.

Revision

Departments follow the procedures indicated above when revising existing policies and procedures.

Review of Existing Policies and Procedures

The issuing department is responsible for ensuring that the policy/procedure document reflects current practices. The department is to periodically review the document and update it as necessary in conformance with the procedures provided above.

Retention of Superseded Policies and Procedures

Issuing departments are responsible for retaining policies and procedures for at least six years after they are superseded. See BPPM 90.01.