Subject: Policy on Access to and Use of Campus Property and Facilities
The purpose of this policy is to provide a uniform basis upon which the Universities, Community Colleges, and Technology Centers governed by the Tennessee Board of Regents (“TBR” or “the Board”) can regulate and facilitate the use of campus property and facilities. It is intended to operate consistent with each institution’s educational purpose and mission, through the implementation of reasonable, content/viewpoint neutral regulations. This policy, and all campus policies developed in compliance with the policy, shall be implemented and construed so as to ensure no undue disruption of that mission, promote an educational atmosphere on campus; prevent commercial exploitation of students; preserve residential tranquility; and prevent use of campus property and facilities contrary to federal, state or local law, regulation, or the rules and policies of the TBR, the institutions, and schools.
In establishing this policy, and the related institutional policies, the TBR recognizes the importance to the educational process and environment for persons affiliated with the respective institutions including officially recognized student organizations and other groups to have reasonable access to, and use of, the educational facilities on their respective campuses, to hear various views. Simultaneously, the TBR also makes clear that its facilities and that of its constituent institutions are not open public forums, but are instead intended solely for use consistent with the advancement and orderly administration of its educational mission for the benefit of its students, staff, and affiliated entities. As such, TBR Institutions do not ordinarily make its buildings or other facilities available to outside individuals or outside groups. Exceptions may be made only if the proposed use is consistent with this policy and institutional policy and mission.
All TBR Institutions shall implement policies governing access to and/or use of their specific property and facilities consistent with the provisions of the policy set forth here, and below, subject to prior review and approval by the TBR.
For the purposes of these regulations, the following definitions shall apply:
(1) "Affiliated Entities" - an officially registered student, student group or student organization.
(2) "Affiliated Individuals" - persons officially connected with the institution including students, faculty, and staff.
(3) "Non-affiliated Entities" - any person, group, or organization which is not an "affiliated entity or individual."
(4) "Non-affiliated Individual" - Any person who is not an "affiliated individual".
(5) "Student" - a person who is currently registered for a credit course or courses, non-credit course or program at the institution, including any such person during any period which follows the end of an academic period which the student has completed until the last day for registration for the next succeeding regular academic period.
III. ACCESS TO CAMPUSES & USE OF PROPERTY/FACILITIES
A. Access to Facilities & Prioritized Users
1. Access to and use of campuses, facilities, and property of TBR institutions and schools is restricted to the institution, institutional administration for official functions, affiliated individuals/entities, and invited or sponsored guests of the institutions or schools except as specifically provided by this policy, institutional policy, or when part or all of a campus, its buildings or facilities are open to the general public for a designated time and purpose.
2. Institutional policies shall set forth the process, and requirements, pursuant to which designated campus properties and/or facilities may be accessed for other than official institutional use. Such policies shall be consistent with the requirements set forth in this policy and will be subject to prior review and approval by the TBR.
3. Institutions may designate certain facilities as available for rent to the general public at market rates, where the length/frequency of occupancy/use of campus facilities, or the nature of a particular building, facility or property or a particular purpose makes such agreements appropriate. Such lease/rental agreements are not covered by this policy and will be executed subject to appropriate TBR policies and guidelines governing the lease of TBR or institutional property, including, but not limited to, TBR Policy No. 1:03:02:10 and TBR Guideline B-026.
4. Access/Use of campus property or facilities, other than for those scheduled for official institutional, administrative and/or normal educational purposes, shall be through a process of application, review, and administrative approval as established by institutional policy consistent with this policy.
5. Institutional policies shall identify a person(s) and/or office(s) where application for use of campus facilities or property may be filed.
6. Institutional policies shall set forth the priority to be applied to individuals or groups applying to use campus facilities and/or property, consistent with institutional mission(s). Such provisions shall address, at minimum, the relative priority of applications made by affiliated entities/individuals as well as unaffiliated entities/persons (where permitted). Highest priority shall always be given to administrative and educational uses.
7. Institutional policies may permit affiliated entities to obtain permission for the repeated use of a particular campus facility or space to conduct regular meetings using campus facilities or property without requiring repeated application and approval for each occurrence of the event if the meetings are limited to members of the organization.
8. Institutional policies may authorize faculty and/or affiliated entities to extend invitations to uncompensated, unaffiliated guest speakers for regular class sessions and/or meetings, without prior application as set forth in this policy where attendance at the class session or meeting will be limited to members of the class or affiliated entity and where no fee or compensation from state funds will be paid to the speaker.
9. Institutional policies shall require that access to or use of campus facilities or property by affiliated entities and affiliated individuals for an event other than a regular meeting of its membership that will include an invited guest speaker and/or be open to persons outside group membership must be made through the procedures set forth in the institutional policy, established pursuant to this policy. The sponsoring entity will be responsible for the conduct of both the speaker and non-affiliated guests at the event as well as for compliance with all laws, TBR and campus rules or policies while present on campus or using campus facilities or property. An application for such access or use of campus facilities or property must clearly set forth the identities of both the affiliated individual/entity filing/sponsoring the application as well as the non-affiliated entity being sponsored. The application will be subject to the same procedures and regulations applicable to all applications for use of campus facilities.
10. Institutional policy may permit non-affiliated entities/individuals, conditioned on sponsorship by an affiliated entity or individual, to apply for use of, or access to, locations on campus specifically identified in institutional policy.
11. Institutional policy shall identify one (1) or more areas or facilities on campus for which non-affiliated entities/individuals, may apply for use or access individually, without sponsorship from an affiliated individual/entity. Such applications shall be limited to those locations on campus specifically identified in institutional policy for access/use by unaffiliated individuals/entities. Such applications shall be subject to the same procedures and requirements.
12. The application of this policy and all institutional policies are limited to one (1) time only events, short term, intermittent, and/or repeat use of campus facilities where access/use of facilities/property are permitted without an associated rental/lease or fee. Such uses shall be limited to circumstances where an institution does not actually, or effectively, cede occupancy or control of any institution property. Approval for repeated or intermittent use of any facility or property pursuant to this policy may not exceed four (4) months in length and may only be renewed or repeated after review to determine that such use does not conflict with an institutional need, or another request for access/use of the facility/space by another eligible person/entity.
13. Institutional policies shall specify that, in all cases where an application for access or use of campus facilities or property is approved, such use will be subject to the execution of an appropriate written agreement regarding the conditions applicable to the approved access/use, which shall include, but not be limited to, the terms and conditions set forth in this policy. Institutions may utilize differing forms of agreement appropriate for the nature of the entity seeking access/use, or the nature of the event or facility associated with the access/use.
14. Institutional policy shall permit access to and use of facilities consistent with the requirements of T.C.A. §8-50-1001. Institutions may require that meetings, or other gatherings, conducted pursuant to this statutory provision be subject to an application for use pursuant to this policy, for the sole purpose of ensuring that administrative, educational, and/or workplace functions are not interrupted. Institutional policy may permit repeated access, pursuant to this provision, without repeated application.
B. Geographic Locations & Buildings
1. Institutional policies shall establish and identify specific buildings and/or other areas of campus that will be made available for use by affiliated entities/individuals. Where certain buildings or areas of campus, are available for use by affiliated entities/individuals, but not for unaffiliated entities/individuals, institutional policy will so specify. Highest priority for use of institutional buildings, facilities, and/or property shall always be reserved for administrative and educational uses.
2. Where appropriate, institutional policy shall identify certain categories of events or uses of campus facilities or property that will be limited to specific facilities or locations appropriate for the nature of the activity, e.g., concerts, athletic events, theatrical presentations, etc.
3. Institutional policies shall specify, where appropriate, dates, times, periods in an academic term, etc., when identified facilities shall not be available for use/access pursuant to the requirements of this policy and/or institutional policy.
4. Institutional policies shall provide that buildings, facilities, and/or property, not specifically identified as available for use are specifically unavailable for use other than for normal administrative or educational purposes.
5. Institutional policies shall identify specific facilities, e.g. athletic facilities, auditoriums, theater buildings, etc., if any, that are available for lease or rental at market rates. Such use shall be subject to application, approval, and an appropriate written lease or rental agreement, pursuant to the institutional policy established in compliance with this policy.
C. Application & Permitting Process - The policies and procedures related to the application for access/use of campus property/facilities shall include the following:
1. Institutional policies shall require that all application(s) for access to, or use of, campus facilities or property must be submitted in writing at least five (5) working days in advance of the proposed use (excluding weekends and holidays) to the appropriate location/official at the institution. Where an application for an event involving an outside speaker involves payment of a total fee and/or expenses in excess of $2,500.00 from institutional funds, the request must be submitted at least twenty (20) working days prior to the date of the proposed speaking engagement.
2. Institutional policies shall permit Presidents, the Vice Chancellor for Technology Centers, or their designees, to approve applications for registration filed less than five (5) working days, twenty (20) days in the case of a speaker paid from institutional or school funds, before the event, if it is determined that the use of property requested can be reasonably accommodated and that adequate cause exists for late filing of the application for registration. Approval of late applications shall be within the sole discretion of the official designated in the institutional policy. The decision of such official will be final.
3. Institutional policies shall provide for written notice of approval or disapproval of the application for use of campus property or facilities. Such notice shall be provided to the applicant within a reasonable time from the date an application is submitted.
4. Institutional policies shall provide that, at minimum, notices of approval/disapproval will be made available at the office of the designated campus official. Institutional policies may provide for additional forms of notice, e.g., electronic delivery. It shall be the responsibility of the applicant to obtain notice of the approval or denial of any application submitted pursuant to this policy.
5. Institutional policies shall require that notices of disapproval shall include a statement of the basis for disapproval.
6. Institutional policies shall provide that any denial of a request to access/use campus facilities and/or property shall be based solely on factors related to reasonable regulations in light of the institution’s mission and the nature of the facility or property requested and rendered in a content/viewpoint neutral manner.
7. Institutional policies shall publish a list of the various considerations potentially leading to a denial of an application. Such list shall include, at minimum, the following:
(a) The property or facilities have been previously reserved by another group, organization or individual with equal or higher priority,
(b) Frequency of previous use during an academic period in comparison to that of a contemporaneous applicant,
(c) Use of the property or facilities requested would be impractical due to scheduled usage prior to or following the requested use, or due other extenuating circumstances,
(d) The applicant or sponsor of the activity has not provided accurate or complete information required on the application for registration,
(e) The applicant or sponsor of the activity has been responsible for violation of institutional policy during a previously registered use of campus property or facilities,
(f) The applicant has previously violated any conditions or assurances specified in a previous registration application,
(g) The facility or property requested has not been designated as available for use for the time/date
(h) The anticipated size or attendance for the event will exceed building/fire codes, established safety standards, and/or the physical or other limitations for the facility or property requested,
(i) The activity is of such nature or duration that it cannot reasonably be accommodated in the particular facility or area for which application is made,
(j) A determination that the size and/or location of the requested use would cause substantial disruption or interference with the normal activities of the institution, the educational use of other facilities or services on campus or the flow of vehicular or pedestrian traffic,
(k) The activity conflicts with existing contractual obligations of the institution,
(l) The activity presents a clear and present danger for physical harm, coercion, intimidation, or other invasion of lawful rights of the institution's officials, faculty members, or students, the damage or destruction, or seizure and subversion, of the institution's or school's buildings, other property, or for other campus disorder of a violent or destructive nature. In determining the existence of a clear and present danger, the responsible official may consider all relevant factors,
(m) A determination that the requested use would be contrary to local, state, or federal law, regulation, or the policies or regulations of the Board of Regents, or the institution.
8. The office(s)/official(s) at each institution responsible for receiving and processing applications for use of campus facilities or property pursuant to this policy shall maintain a copy of the institutional policy for inspection by groups, organizations, and individuals interested in the use of campus property and/or facilities and shall provide a copy of such policy upon request.
D. General Conditions for Use of Property or Facilities
Institutional policies shall set forth the policies and conditions governing activities conducted pursuant to approved applications for access to or use of campus facilities or property. Policies established at the institutional level will be limited to those that reflect reasonable regulations in light of the institution’s mission and the nature of the facility or property requested. Such policies will be enforced uniformly to all uses of campus facilities and/or property in a content/viewpoint neutral manner. Violation of, or failure to comply with, the requirements set forth in this policy or institutional policy may result in the immediate revocation of previously granted approval for access/use of campus facilities or property. Institutional policies shall include, at a minimum, the following:
1. Where applicable, institutional policies shall state limitations as to the number of persons who may attend in accordance with appropriate building and fire codes and safety standards applicable to particular facility and/or property at issue,
2. Institutional policies shall require compliance with regulations, policies or rules for the conduct of assemblies, meetings and demonstrations as a condition for use/access to campus facilities and/or property,
3. Institutional policies shall specify that sound amplification equipment may be used only when prior approval has been requested and granted by the appropriate official taking into account the institution’s mission and the nature of the facility or property requested, location, time of day, etc.
4. Institutional policies shall specify the conditions applicable to the use of institution equipment in connection with the use of campus property and/or facilities, the required approvals as well as whether any additional agreements, leases or costs shall be associated with such use,
5. Institutional policies shall specify that all groups, organizations and individuals, by making application for registration of an activity and by subsequent use after approval by the institution, agree to indemnify the institution and hold it harmless from any and all liabilities arising out of such use of the property and/or facilities of the institution, including, but not limited to, personal injury, property damage, court costs and attorney’s fees.
6. Institutional policies shall specify that all persons operating motor vehicles in conjunction with an approved use/access of campus facilities and/or property shall be subject to institution, and TBR rules, regulations, policies and procedures regarding traffic and parking.
7. Institutional policies shall specify that users of facilities or property and/or their sponsor(s) are responsible for all activities associated with the event.
8. Institutional policies shall specify that use of the requested facility and/or property shall be limited to the declared purpose in the application for use/access to campus facilities and/or property.
9. Institutional policies shall specify that access to, or use of, campus facilities and/or shall not be permitted overnight unless specifically requested and approved pursuant to the requirements of this policy and institutional policy. Such use shall be limited to the specific time and location set forth in the notice of approval/ registration document.
10. Institutional policies shall specify that all persons on the campus of any institution in conjunction with an approved application for use/access, shall provide adequate identification upon request to appropriate officials and security personnel of the institution. Persons or groups who refuse to provide such identification may be subject to immediate removal from campus and/or disciplinary action. In appropriate circumstances, such persons may become subject to arrest and/or prosecution.
11. Institutional policies shall specify that the institution shall have the right to terminate the use of campus facilities or property by any group, organization or individual which violates any provision of this policy, Institutional policy, local, state, or federal law or regulation.
E. Certain Facilities, Fees, and Costs
Institutional policies may establish a system of required fees or charges for specific costs and/or services (e.g., maintenance, janitorial, utilities, and/or security) related to the nature and uses of particular facilities and/or locations on campus as well as the anticipated event size or attendance for any use of campus facilities and/or property. Where such fees or costs are established, the fee/cost schedule, facilities and/or event/crowd size to which they apply shall be set forth in the institutional policy and applied to all similar uses on a content/viewpoint neutral basis. Payment of such fees/costs in advance of an event, if required, shall be stated clearly in the institutional policy.
1. Institutional policies shall require that individuals/entities using institutional facilities pursuant to this policy indemnify the institution and shall further set forth the circumstances and uses where the institution will require:
a. Adequate bond or other security for damage to the property or facilities;
b. Personal injury and property damage insurance coverage;
c. A performance bond or insurance guaranteeing or insuring performance of its obligations under the contract; and/or
d. Other types of insurance in such amounts as are designated by the institution
2. Institutional policy shall identify specific facilities, uses, or events for which bond, security, and/or liability insurance will be required. In setting its policy, institutions may consider, the nature and uses of particular facilities and/or locations on campus ,and the anticipated event size or attendance for any use of campus facilities and/or property. Buildings, locations or events, for which bond, security, and/or liability insurance will be required shall be set forth clearly in the institutional policy. Proof of compliance with this provision may be required in advance of an event. This provision shall be applied and enforced in a content/viewpoint neutral manner
G. Distribution Of Leaflets, Literature, Pamphlets, Etc. - Commercial Use/Solicitation Prohibited
1. Schools and institutions may establish locations where the sale or distribution of literature associated with an approved application for access or use of campus property or facilities may be allowed.
2. Institutional policies shall specify that literature and/or advertisements may only be sold or distributed in conjunction with an approved application for use of campus facilities. Requests to distribute or sell literature shall be included with the underlying application to use campus facilities and/or property, using the same form utilized for use of campus facilities or property. Such applications shall be evaluated by the same standards established under this policy for the associated use/access of campus facilities and/or property.
3. Institutional policies however, shall not permit such activity within:
a. Classroom, library or other academic buildings or facilities;
b. Administrative and employee offices and work areas; or,
c. Student residence halls, dormitories or apartment buildings.
4. Institutional policies may permit the distribution or sale of literature, non-commercial solicitations, or advertising in designated locations within the lobbies or other general use areas of the above buildings or other campus facilities designated for the placement of literature for distribution or sale.
5. Institutional policies shall provide that any literature which is distributed or sold and any advertisement shall comply with all applicable local, state, and, federal laws and regulations, as well as the rules and policies of the institution, and TBR.
6. Institutional policies shall specify that no obscene literature or material, as defined by law, shall be distributed on any property owned or used by a TBR institution.
7. Institutional policies shall specify that campus property and facilities may not be used by any non-affiliated entity/individual for the conduct of profit-making activities except when engaged in a business relationship, pursuant to a contract, with the institution and/or when a rental or lease agreement is in place specifically for such temporary purpose.
1. Bulletin Boards/Posting
a. Institutional policies may permit the establishment of bulletin boards or approved areas for posting for specific uses and/or entities,
b. Institutional policies may identify individual boards/areas and specify or limit the authorized uses and/or entities for such boards/areas as well as the types of materials which may be posted on a board or area, the maximum size and duration of any notice, and any other special conditions on use,
c. Such limits shall be conspicuously posted on each board or posting area, and shall control the use of the board when posted,
d. Institutional policies may require prior approval for the use of any or all bulletin boards or posting areas on campus, and if required, the name of the official authorized to approve use of the board shall be posted on the board. Use of a board may be denied on the basis of one or more of the following:
(i) The person or group is not authorized to use the board in question;
(ii) The material is not the type authorized for the board in question, or fails to meet any special conditions as posted on the board;
(iii) The material is obscene or otherwise violates any federal or state law or regulation of the institution; or
(iv) There is insufficient space available for the material on the board in question due to the previous posting of other materials,
e. Institutional policy shall provide that areas not specifically identified and/or authorized for posting are not available for such purpose for any individual or entity, whether affiliated or unaffiliated,
f. Exceptions to this policy can be made upon approval of the Chancellor of the TBR.
2. Food/Catering Policies
a. Institutions may establish a food/catering policy to be utilized in conjunction with approved use of campus facilities and/or property.
b. Institutional policies shall specify the facilities/property where such policy shall apply.
c. Institutional policies shall specify any associated cost or inform users where such cost information may be obtained.
Institutions may address any matter with regard to use/access to campus facility not specifically addressed in this policy, in its individual institutional policy, if it is not inconsistent with any provision of this policy and subject to the general requirement that such provisions are limited to reasonable regulations capable of implementation in a content/viewpoint neutral manner. Such policies are also subject to prior review and approval by the TBR.
Source: TBR Meetings, December 8, 1978; March 10, 1979; March 18, 1983; September 30, 1983; September 18, 1987; March 16, 1990; September 21, 1990; Revised and renamed Policy 1:03:02:50 Access to and Use of Campus Property and Facilities Sept. 22, 2011. Effective on May 30, 2012.