2021 Florida Statutes (Including 2021B Session)
Powers and duties of the Board of Governors.
Powers and duties of the Board of Governors.
1001.706 Powers and duties of the Board of Governors.—
(1) GENERAL PROVISIONS.—For each constituent university, the Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, shall be responsible for cost-effective policy decisions appropriate to the university’s mission, the implementation and maintenance of high-quality education programs within law, the measurement of performance, the reporting of information, and the provision of input regarding state policy, budgeting, and education standards.
(2) REGULATORY AUTHORITY.—
(a) Pursuant to s. 7, Art. IX of the State Constitution, the Board of Governors has the authority to regulate the State University System and may adopt a regulation development procedure for the Board of Governors and the university boards of trustees to use in implementing their constitutional duties and responsibilities.
(b) The Board of Governors shall be subject to the provisions of chapter 120 when acting pursuant to statutory authority derived from the Legislature, except that the Board of Governors may adopt regulations if expressly authorized or required by law. Such regulations must be adopted pursuant to a development procedure that complies with paragraph (c). If the Board of Governors delegates a power or duty to a university board of trustees as the designee, the authority to adopt rules or regulations is included in the delegation. If the Board of Governors delegates a statutory power or duty to a university board of trustees, the university board of trustees shall be subject to the provisions of chapter 120 but may adopt regulations to the same extent as the Board of Governors under this subsection.
(c) The development procedure for regulations authorized or required by law must provide for notice to the public of, and an opportunity for public comment on, the proposed adoption, amendment, or repeal of a regulation; a process for a substantially affected person to challenge a statement of general applicability that has not been properly adopted as a regulation; a process for a substantially affected person to challenge an unlawful regulation; and a process for the adoption of and challenges to emergency regulations that are necessary to protect the public interest in the emergency. Judicial review shall be sought in the appellate district in which the headquarters of the Board of Governors is located or in which the main campus of the state university is located, as applicable. The regulation development procedure shall be published prominently on the websites of the Board of Governors and the state universities.
(3) POWERS AND DUTIES RELATING TO ORGANIZATION AND OPERATION OF STATE UNIVERSITIES.—
(a) The Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, shall develop guidelines and procedures related to data and technology, including information systems, communications systems, computer hardware and software, and networks.
(b) The Board of Governors shall develop guidelines relating to divisions of sponsored research, pursuant to the provisions of s. 1004.22, to serve the function of administration and promotion of the programs of research.
(c) The Board of Governors shall prescribe conditions for direct-support organizations and university health services support organizations to be certified and to use university property and services. Conditions relating to certification must provide for audit review and oversight by the Board of Governors.
(d) The Board of Governors shall develop guidelines for supervising faculty practice plans for the academic health science centers.
(e) The Board of Governors shall ensure that students at state universities have access to general education courses as provided in the statewide articulation agreement, pursuant to s. 1007.23.
(f) The Board of Governors shall approve baccalaureate degree programs that require more than 120 semester credit hours of coursework prior to such programs being offered by a state university. At least half of the required coursework for any baccalaureate degree must be offered at the lower-division level, except in program areas approved by the Board of Governors.
(g) The Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, shall adopt a written antihazing policy, appropriate penalties for violations of such policy, and a program for enforcing such policy.
(h) The Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, may establish a uniform code of conduct and appropriate penalties for violations of its regulations by students and student organizations, including regulations governing student academic honesty. Such penalties, unless otherwise provided by law, may include reasonable fines, the withholding of diplomas or transcripts pending compliance with regulations or payment of fines, and the imposition of probation, suspension, or dismissal.
(i) The Board of Governors shall adopt regulations requiring universities to use purchasing agreements or state term contracts pursuant to s. 287.056 or enter into consortia and cooperative agreements to maximize the purchasing power for goods and services. A consortium or cooperative agreement may be statewide, regional, or a combination of institutions, as appropriate to achieve the lowest cost, with the goal of achieving a 5-percent savings on existing contract prices through the use of new cooperative arrangements or new consortium contracts.
(j) The Board of Governors shall develop and annually deliver a training program for members of each state university board of trustees that addresses the role of such boards in governing institutional resources and protecting the public interest. At a minimum, each trustee must participate in the training program within 1 year of appointment and reappointment to a university board of trustees. The program must include information on trustee responsibilities relating to all of the following:
1. Meeting the statutory, regulatory, and fiduciary obligations of the board.
2. Establishing internal process controls and accountability mechanisms for the institution’s president and other administrative officers.
3. Oversight of planning, construction, maintenance, expansion, and renovation projects that impact the university’s consolidated infrastructure, physical facilities, and natural environment, including its lands, improvements, and capital equipment.
4. Establishing policies that promote college affordability, including ensuring that the costs of university fees, textbooks, and instructional materials are minimized whenever possible.
5. Creation and implementation of institutionwide rules and regulations.
6. Institutional ethics and conflicts of interest.
7. Best practices for board governance.
8. Understanding current national and state issues in higher education.
9. Any other responsibilities the Board of Governors deems necessary or appropriate.
(4) POWERS AND DUTIES RELATING TO FINANCE.—
(a) The Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, shall account for expenditures of all state, local, federal, and other funds. Such accounting systems shall have appropriate audit and internal controls in place that will enable the constituent universities to satisfactorily and timely perform all accounting and reporting functions required by state and federal law and rules.
(b) The Board of Governors shall prepare the legislative budget requests for the State University System, including a request for fixed capital outlay, and submit them to the State Board of Education for inclusion in the Early Learning-20 legislative budget request. The Board of Governors shall provide the state universities with fiscal policy guidelines, formats, and instruction for the development of individual university budget requests.
(c) The Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, shall establish tuition and fees pursuant to ss. 1009.24 and 1009.26, unless otherwise provided in law.
(d) The Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, is authorized to secure comprehensive general liability insurance pursuant to s. 1004.24.
(e) The Board of Governors may transfer unused appropriations from the Education/General Student and Other Fees Trust Fund, pursuant to s. 1011.4106(2), between institutions.
(5) POWERS AND DUTIES RELATING TO ACCOUNTABILITY.—
(a) The Legislature intends that the Board of Governors shall align the missions of each constituent university with the academic success of its students; the national reputation of its faculty and its academic and research programs; the quantity of externally generated research, patents, and licenses; and the strategic and accountability plans required in paragraphs (b) and (c). The mission alignment and strategic plan shall consider peer institutions at the constituent universities. The mission alignment and strategic plan shall acknowledge that universities that have a national and international impact have the greatest capacity to promote the state’s economic development through: new discoveries, patents, licenses, and technologies that generate state businesses of global importance; research achievements through external grants and contracts that are comparable to nationally recognized and ranked universities; the creation of a resource rich academic environment that attracts high-technology business and venture capital to the state; and this generation’s finest minds focusing on solving the state’s economic, social, environmental, and legal problems in the areas of life sciences, water, sustainability, energy, and health care. A nationally recognized and ranked university that has a global perspective and impact shall be afforded the opportunity to enable and protect the university’s competitiveness on the global stage in fair competition with other institutions of other states in the highest Carnegie Classification.
(b) The Board of Governors shall develop a strategic plan specifying goals and objectives for the State University System and each constituent university, including each university’s contribution to overall system goals and objectives. The strategic plan must:
1. Include performance metrics and standards common for all institutions and metrics and standards unique to institutions depending on institutional core missions, including, but not limited to, student admission requirements, retention, graduation, percentage of graduates who have attained employment, percentage of graduates enrolled in continued education, licensure passage, average wages of employed graduates, average cost per graduate, excess hours, student loan burden and default rates, faculty awards, total annual research expenditures, patents, licenses and royalties, intellectual property, startup companies, annual giving, endowments, and well-known, highly respected national rankings for institutional and program achievements.
2. Consider reports and recommendations of the Florida Talent Development Council under s. 1004.015 and the Articulation Coordinating Committee under s. 1007.01.
3. Include student enrollment and performance data delineated by method of instruction, including, but not limited to, traditional, online, and distance learning instruction.
4. Include criteria for designating baccalaureate degree and master’s degree programs at specified universities as high-demand programs of emphasis. The programs of emphasis list adopted by the Board of Governors before July 1, 2021, shall be used for the 2021-2022 academic year. Beginning in the 2022-2023 academic year, the Board of Governors shall adopt the criteria to determine value for and prioritization of degree credentials and degree programs established by the Credentials Review Committee under s. 445.004 for designating high-demand programs of emphasis. The Board of Governors must review designated programs of emphasis, at a minimum, every 3 years to ensure alignment with the prioritization of degree credentials and degree programs identified by the Credentials Review Committee.
(c) The Board of Governors shall develop an accountability plan for the State University System and each constituent university. The accountability plan must address institutional and system achievement of goals and objectives specified in the strategic plan adopted pursuant to paragraph (b) and must be submitted as part of its legislative budget request. Each university shall submit, as a component of the university’s annual accountability plan, information on the effectiveness of its plan for improving 4-year graduation rates and the level of financial assistance provided to students pursuant to paragraph (h).
(d) Beginning in the 2014-2015 academic year and annually thereafter, the Board of Governors shall require a state university prior to registration to provide each enrolled student electronic access to the economic security report of employment and earning outcomes prepared by the Department of Economic Opportunity pursuant to s. 445.07. In addition, the Board of Governors shall require a state university to provide each student electronic access to the following information each year prior to registration using the data described in s. 1008.39:
1. The top 25 percent of degrees reported by the university in terms of highest full-time job placement and highest average annualized earnings in the year after earning the degree.
2. The bottom 10 percent of degrees reported by the university in terms of lowest full-time job placement and lowest average annualized earnings in the year after earning the degree.
(e) The Board of Governors shall maintain an effective information system to provide accurate, timely, and cost-effective information about each university. The board shall continue to collect and maintain, at a minimum, management information as such information existed on June 30, 2002. To ensure consistency, the Board of Governors shall define the data components and methodology used to implement ss. 1001.7065 and 1001.92. Each university shall conduct an annual audit to verify that the data submitted pursuant to ss. 1001.7065 and 1001.92 complies with the data definitions established by the board and submit the audits to the Board of Governors Office of Inspector General as part of the annual certification process required by the Board of Governors.
(f) If the Board of Governors of the State University System determines that a state university board of trustees is unwilling or unable to address substantiated allegations made by any person relating to waste, fraud, or financial mismanagement within the state university, the Office of the Inspector General shall investigate the allegations.
(g) The Board of Governors may consider waiving its regulations and may waive or modify the tuition differential use requirements under s. 1009.24(16)(a). If not currently authorized, the Board of Governors may request authority from the Legislature to waive or modify specific statutory requirements, including percentages and dollar amount limitations in s. 1009.24, in order to reduce barriers and support the attainment of goals identified in institutional plans, as necessary for advancing system priorities and unique institutional priorities. Regulatory flexibilities authorized and statutory flexibilities authorized or requested by the Board of Governors pursuant to this paragraph must be included in the accountability plan prepared and submitted pursuant to paragraph (c).
(h) By June 1, 2018, each university board of trustees shall submit a comprehensive proposal to improve undergraduate 4-year graduation rates to the Board of Governors for implementation beginning in the fall 2018 academic semester. The proposal must:
1. Identify academic, financial, policy, and curricular incentives and disincentives for timely graduation.
2. Outline the implementation of a proactive financial aid program to enable full-time students with financial need to take at least 15 credit hours in the fall and spring semesters.
3. Include assurances that there will be no increased cost to students.
(i) The Board of Governors shall match individual student information with information in the files of state and federal agencies that maintain educational and employment records. The board must enter into an agreement with the Department of Economic Opportunity that allows access to the individual reemployment assistance wage records maintained by the department. The agreement must protect individual privacy and provide that student information may be used only for the purposes of auditing or evaluating higher education programs offered by state universities.
(6) POWERS AND DUTIES RELATING TO PERSONNEL.—
(a) The Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, shall establish the personnel program for all employees of a state university. The Board of Governors shall confirm the presidential selection and reappointment by a university board of trustees as a means of acknowledging that system cooperation is expected.
(b) The Department of Management Services shall retain authority over state university employees for programs established in ss. 110.123, 110.1232, 110.1234, 110.1238, and 110.161 and in chapters 121, 122, and 238. Unless specifically authorized by law, neither the Board of Governors nor a state university may offer group insurance programs for employees as a substitute for or as an alternative to the health insurance programs offered pursuant to chapter 110.
(c) Except as otherwise provided by law, university employees are public employees for purposes of chapter 112 and any payment for travel and per diem expenses shall not exceed the level specified in s. 112.061.
(d) Each contract or employment agreement, or renewal or renegotiation of an existing contract or employment agreement, containing a provision for severance pay with an officer, agent, employee, or contractor must include the provisions required in s. 215.425.
(7) POWERS AND DUTIES RELATING TO PROPERTY.—
(a) The Board of Governors shall develop guidelines for university boards of trustees relating to the acquisition of real and personal property and the sale and disposal thereof and the approval and execution of contracts for the purchase, sale, lease, license, or acquisition of commodities, goods, equipment, contractual services, leases of real and personal property, and construction. The acquisition may include purchase by installment or lease-purchase. Such contracts may provide for payment of interest on the unpaid portion of the purchase price. Title to all real property acquired prior to January 7, 2003, and to all real property acquired with funds appropriated by the Legislature shall be vested in the Board of Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund and shall be transferred and conveyed by it. Notwithstanding any other provisions of this subsection, each board of trustees shall comply with the provisions of s. 287.055 for the procurement of professional services as defined therein. Any acquisition pursuant to this paragraph is subject to the provisions of s. 1010.62.
(b) The Board of Governors shall develop guidelines for university boards of trustees relating to the use, maintenance, protection, and control of university-owned or university-controlled buildings and grounds, property and equipment, name, trademarks and other proprietary marks, and the financial and other resources of the university. Such authority may include placing restrictions on activities and on access to facilities, firearms, food, tobacco, alcoholic beverages, distribution of printed materials, commercial solicitation, animals, and sound. The authority provided the board of trustees in this subsection includes the prioritization of the use of space, property, equipment, and resources and the imposition of charges for those items.
(c) The Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, shall administer a program for the maintenance and construction of facilities pursuant to chapter 1013.
(d) The Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, shall ensure compliance with the provisions of s. 287.09451 for all procurement and ss. 255.101 and 255.102 for construction contracts, and rules adopted pursuant thereto, relating to the utilization of minority business enterprises, except that procurements costing less than the amount provided for in CATEGORY FIVE as provided in s. 287.017 shall not be subject to s. 287.09451.
(e) Notwithstanding the provisions of s. 253.025 but subject to the provisions of s. 1010.62, the Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, may, with the consent of the Board of Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund, sell, convey, transfer, exchange, trade, or purchase real property and related improvements necessary and desirable to serve the needs and purposes of the university.
1. The Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, may secure appraisals and surveys. The Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, shall comply with the rules of the Board of Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund in securing appraisals. Whenever the Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, finds it necessary for timely property acquisition, it may contract, without the need for competitive selection, with one or more appraisers whose names are contained on the list of approved appraisers maintained by the Division of State Lands in the Department of Environmental Protection.
2. The Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, may negotiate and enter into an option contract before an appraisal is obtained. The option contract must state that the final purchase price may not exceed the maximum value allowed by law. The consideration for such an option contract may not exceed 10 percent of the estimate obtained by the Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, or 10 percent of the value of the parcel, whichever is greater, unless otherwise authorized by the Board of Governors or the board’s designee.
3. This paragraph is not intended to abrogate in any manner the authority delegated to the Board of Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund or the Division of State Lands to approve a contract for purchase of state lands or to require policies and procedures to obtain clear legal title to parcels purchased for state purposes. Title to property acquired by a university board of trustees prior to January 7, 2003, and to property acquired with funds appropriated by the Legislature shall vest in the Board of Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund.
(f) The Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, shall prepare and adopt a campus master plan pursuant to s. 1013.30.
(g) The Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, shall prepare, adopt, and execute a campus development agreement pursuant to s. 1013.30.
(h) Notwithstanding the provisions of s. 216.351, the Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, may authorize the rent or lease of parking facilities provided that such facilities are funded through parking fees or parking fines imposed by a university. The Board of Governors, or the board’s designee, may authorize a university board of trustees to charge fees for parking at such rented or leased parking facilities.
(8) COMPLIANCE WITH LAWS, RULES, REGULATIONS, AND REQUIREMENTS.—The Board of Governors has responsibility for compliance with state and federal laws, rules, regulations, and requirements.
(9) COOPERATION WITH OTHER BOARDS.—The Board of Governors shall implement a plan for working on a regular basis with the State Board of Education, the Commission for Independent Education, the Florida Talent Development Council, the Articulation Coordinating Committee, the university boards of trustees, representatives of the Florida College System institution boards of trustees, representatives of the private colleges and universities, and representatives of the district school boards to achieve a seamless education system.
(10) PROHIBITION.—The Board of Governors is prohibited from assessing any fee on state universities, unless specifically authorized by law.
(11) AUTHORIZATION TO REVOKE OR MODIFY.—The Board of Governors may revoke or modify the scope of any power or duty it has delegated.
(12) PUBLIC EDUCATION CAPITAL OUTLAY.—The Board of Governors shall submit the prioritized list as required by s. 1013.64(4). Projects considered for prioritization shall be chosen from a preliminary selection group which shall include the list of projects maintained pursuant to paragraph (d) and the top two priorities of each state university.
(a) The board shall develop a points-based prioritization method to rank projects for consideration from the preliminary selection group that awards points for the degree to which a project meets specific criteria compared to other projects in the preliminary selection group. The board shall consider criteria that evaluates the degree to which:
1. The project was funded previously by the Legislature and the amount of funds needed for completion constitute a relatively low percentage of total project costs;
2. The project represents a building maintenance project or the repair of utility infrastructure which is necessary to preserve a safe environment for students and staff, or a project that is necessary to maintain the operation of a university site, and for which the university can demonstrate that it has no funds available to complete the project from the sources designated in s. 1011.45;
3. The project addresses the greatest current year need for space as indicated by increased instructional or research capacity that enhances educational opportunities for the greatest number of students or the university’s research mission;
4. The project reflects a ranked priority of the submitting university;
5. The project represents the most practical and cost-effective replacement or renovation of an existing building; or
6. For a new construction, remodeling, or renovation project that has not received a prior appropriation, the project has received, or has commitments to receive, funding from sources other than a project-specific state appropriation to assist with completion of the project; the project is needed to preserve the safety of persons using the facility; the project is consistent with a strategic legislative or board initiative; or the institution has allocated funding equal to a percentage of the total project cost. The percentage shall be no less than:
a. Six percent for preeminent universities;
b. Four percent for emerging preeminent universities; and
c. Two percent for state universities that are neither a preeminent or emerging preeminent university.
(b) The project scoring the highest for each criterion shall be awarded the maximum points in the range of points within the points scale developed by the board. The board shall weight the value of criteria such that the maximum points awarded for each criterion represent a percent of the total of maximum points. However, the board may not weight any criterion higher than the criterion established in subparagraph (a)3.
(c) A new construction, remodeling, or renovation project that has not received an appropriation in a previous year shall not be considered for inclusion on the prioritized list required by s. 1013.64(4), unless:
1. A plan is provided to reserve funds in an escrow account, specific to the project, into which shall be deposited each year an amount of funds equal to 1 percent of the total value of the building for future maintenance;
2. There exists sufficient capacity within the cash and bonding estimate of funds by the Revenue Estimating Conference to accommodate the project within the 3-year Public Education Capital Outlay funding cycle; and
3. The project has been recommended pursuant to s. 1013.31.
(d) The board shall continually maintain a list of all public education capital outlay projects for which state funds were previously appropriated which have not been completed. The list shall include an estimate of the amount of state funding needed for the completion of each project.
(e) The board shall review its space need calculation methodology developed pursuant to s. 1013.31 to incorporate improvements, efficiencies, or changes. Recommendations shall be submitted to the chairs of the House of Representatives and Senate appropriations committees by October 31, 2019, and every 3 years thereafter.
(13) INTELLECTUAL FREEDOM AND VIEWPOINT DIVERSITY ASSESSMENT.—
(a) For the purposes of this subsection, the term:
1. “Intellectual freedom and viewpoint diversity” means the exposure of students, faculty, and staff to, and the encouragement of their exploration of, a variety of ideological and political perspectives.
2. “Shield” means to limit students’, faculty members’, or staff members’ access to, or observation of, ideas and opinions that they may find uncomfortable, unwelcome, disagreeable, or offensive.
(b) The Board of Governors shall require each state university to conduct an annual assessment of the intellectual freedom and viewpoint diversity at that institution. The Board of Governors shall select or create an objective, nonpartisan, and statistically valid survey to be used by each state university which considers the extent to which competing ideas and perspectives are presented and members of the university community, including students, faculty, and staff, feel free to express their beliefs and viewpoints on campus and in the classroom. The Board of Governors shall annually compile and publish the assessments by September 1 of each year, beginning on September 1, 2022.
(c) The Board of Governors may not shield students, faculty, or staff at state universities from free speech protected under the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, Art. I of the State Constitution, or s. 1004.97.
History.—s. 76, ch. 2007-217; s. 3, ch. 2009-60; s. 1, ch. 2009-213; s. 11, ch. 2010-78; s. 24, ch. 2011-5; s. 5, ch. 2012-134; s. 5, ch. 2012-195; s. 45, ch. 2013-27; s. 2, ch. 2018-4; s. 4, ch. 2019-103; s. 11, ch. 2019-119; s. 29, ch. 2021-10; s. 2, ch. 2021-159; s. 18, ch. 2021-164.