Campus Facilities Use

No. 5-37    Rev. 12-04-12      Date 8-17-77     

 

I.  PURPOSE

The facilities of Weber State University are primarily a nonpublic forum for use by  students, faculty, and staff for activities and programs that support the basic University functions of teaching, research and service and relate to educational, cultural, recreational, and on-campus organizational activities.  The purpose of this policy is to provide a structure for access to and use of University facilities and property, including consideration for the University’s interests in undisturbed instruction and learning; providing space for activities that support the mission of the University; protecting the free exchange of ideas; ensuring safe and orderly usage; coordinating multiple uses of limited space; assuring preservation of the campus; assuring financial accountability for use of property; providing for a diversity of interests; and other legitimate interests.  Use of University facilities will be consistent, at all times, with these uses and purposes.  The University retains the right to determine which activities are consistent with its primary purposes and may at any time grant or deny requests based on regulations set forth herein.  The University retains the right to amend this policy without prior notice.  Policy amendments are effective immediately.

Public expression in the form of speech and advocacy may be exercised at such times and places and in such a manner as to assure orderly conduct, the least possible interference with University responsibilities as an educational institution, protection of the rights of individuals in the use of University facilities, and reasonable protection of persons against practices that would make them involuntary audiences.  These regulations shall be interpreted in accordance with the requirements of the free speech and assembly rights guaranteed by the United States Constitution and the Utah Constitution, and in accordance with generally accepted concepts of academic freedom as followed nationally and at Weber State University. 

All persons on the campus of Weber State University, whether administrators, faculty, students, employees or guests, are subject to the law and the regulations of the University. Those who violate the law or the University's regulations while on the campus do so at the risk of prosecution in the courts by appropriate government officials or proceedings authorized by University regulations.

II.  REFERENCES     

A.  PPM 7-10, Posting and Distribution of Written Materials on Campus
B. 
PPM 6-22, Student Code
C. 
PPM 9-1, Academic Freedom/General Principles
D. 
Utah State Board of Regent Rule 251

III.  DEFINITIONS

A.  Commercial Speech – All spoken, written and symbolic speech intended in whole or in part for the personal profit of the person, organization or institution engaged in the speech.

B.  Demonstrating – A public display of views or opinions in the form of rally, march, gathering, or procession.

C.  Expressive Activity – Speakers expressing views and opinions to those wishing to listen; picketing; demonstrating as defined herein.

D.  Facilities –All land, buildings, facilities, and other property in the possession of or owned, used, or controlled by the University (including streets and sidewalks).

E.  Fronting - When a non-University individual or organization uses University space/facilities and services under the false representation to the Venue Scheduling Office that the activity is a University-sponsored program, whether the representation is made by another member of the University community or a non-University individual or organization.

F.  Member of the University Community- All students, members of the university faculty and teaching staff, all employees holding administrative or staff positions and all personnel associated with the university.

G.  Public Safety Entities – Any entity with jurisdiction over the University in charge of safety, security, health and related issues.  This would include, but is not limited to, the police department, fire marshal, facilities management, and risk management.

H.  Student Organizations – For the purpose of these regulations, the term "student organizations" mean those organizations of students authorized and established by PPM 6-22, Student Code, Section V.

I.  Semi-permanent Structure –  Any object used for purposes of expressive activity including, but not limited to, booths, buildings, shelters, tents, boxes, shanties, stages, theaters and other similar physical structures. This does not include items such as handbills, signs, notices and posters, arm bands or personal attire.

J.  Venue Scheduling Office – The person or persons designated by the University administration and charged with scheduling the use of University indoor and outdoor space for the purpose of administering these regulations.

IV.       APPLICABILITY

This policy is applicable to individuals and groups who wish to use University Facilities for short term purposes.  Leasing of University space for long term purposes is governed by other policies.

V.       GENERAL STATEMENT

A.  Freedom of Speech and Assembly. In areas designated for such purposes, consistent with rights granted by the Constitution of Utah and the Constitution of the United States, members of the University community shall have the right to freedom of speech and assembly, subject only to reasonable, content neutral rules and regulations regarding time, place, and manner.

B.  Freedom of the Press.  Members of the University community in their publications or broadcasts are entitled to the full protection of the constitutional right of freedom of the press in accordance with other University policies and rules.

C.  Academic Freedom.  Academic freedom in the pursuit and dissemination of knowledge through all mediums shall be maintained at Weber State University in accordance with PPM 9-1, Academic Freedom/General Principles.

D.  Conduct of Classes.  Discussion and expression of all views relevant to the subject matter of a class are recognized as necessary to the educational process, but students have no right to impinge on the freedom of instructors to teach or the right of other students to learn. See PPM 6-22, Student Code and PPM 9-5, Faculty Responsibilities to Students for further information.

E.  Speaker Policy.  Members of the University community and their organizations shall have the right to invite speakers to address audiences on campus (at the expense of the organization and members), in designated locations and in accordance with reasonable regulations governing the use of University facilities. The rights of speakers to freedom of expression under the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Utah shall be protected. The rights of speakers to speak and audiences to hear free from undue disruption and interference shall also be protected.

F.  Priority. 

1.  University facilities will be allowed to be used in the priority order specified below.  In areas made available for use, Venue Scheduling Offices shall generally allow reservations to be made on a first come, first served basis; however, University usage shall be granted preference over other usage. The University may also designate certain times and days where use of any facilities would be inappropriate for use, such as during final examination periods or commencement.

a.         University Community Usage:   Includes those educational or training activities which are central to supporting the roles assigned to the University by the State Board of Regents consistent with its mission. These activities must have been created and administered by Weber State University entities.

Includes those activities administered by the Weber State University Student Association (WSUSA) and registered student organizations, consistent with the goals affirmed for Weber State University student activities. These activities include, but are not limited to, social, cultural, educational and service projects.

b.         Community Non-Profit Usage:  Includes activities consistent with the goals affirmed for community service by Weber State University. These events are typically administered by non-profit organizations.

 c.         Community For-Profit Usage:  Includes cultural, educational or training activities which were not created by Weber State University, but which serve the University community. These events are typically administered by profit-oriented organizations.

2.  Fronting is prohibited.  Any individual who is found to be involved in fronting may face restriction, be charged for costs incurred on the part of the University, or other appropriate consequences.

VI.  EXPRESSIVE ACTIVITY

A.  The University provides reasonably appropriate facilities in the Bell Tower Plaza and in a designated location at the Davis Campus, to engage in expressive activity during regular hours set by the Venue Scheduling Office. These facilities are available to any person, but members of the University community and their organizations shall have preference in the use of the facilities. Organizations or individuals reserving the facilities shall have preference in the order of their application and over those seeking to use facilities without reservation.

B.  Nothing in this section shall be interpreted as limiting the right of individuals to engage in expressive activity elsewhere on the campus. However, not all areas of campus are suitable for expressive activities.  Areas on campus that have been designated for other purposes, are fenced or blocked to exclude access, or are otherwise distinguished for use by the University are not open for expressive activities.  No activities may be held which render a space unsatisfactory for use in its normal or primary function or which interfere with an activity previously scheduled according to this policy or with normal or scheduled University activities.   Use of the areas designated above or other outside areas on campus must be reserved not less than 48 hours in advance of the activity and may be subject to appropriate restrictions if one of the following conditions applies:

1.  Activity is expected to attract a number of individuals which exceeds the designated capacity for the space;

2.  Activity is promoted in advance by any medium;

3.  Activity involves the use of tables or displays, except where such tables or displays are located in the Bell Tower Plaza, the Moench Mall or the location designated at the Davis Campus, unless tables or displays must be set up more than one hour in advance of the activity;

4.  Activity involves the use of sound amplification equipment;

5.  Activity presents a risk of harm to property or presents public safety concerns addressed in the event planning guidelines described in Section XII.

Should any organization or group not schedule in advance or schedule in advance but ultimately attract more than the number of individuals appropriate for the designated capacity for the space, cause other concern addressed under the event planning guidelines, or materially and adversely impact any other legitimate University interest, such group may be required to discontinue the activity or postpone the activity until scheduling can be coordinated with the Venue Scheduling Office.  These offices may regulate such activity in a manner consistent with this policy. Reasonable effort should be made to allow such groups to continue or move to a more appropriate area, taking into consideration public safety issues, property damage concerns, disruption of University functions, interference with traffic, and other relevant concerns.  Information regarding space capacity and event planning guidelines will be made available at the Venue Scheduling Office.  Information will be provided to interested parties regarding available facilities and the procedures for reserving use of the facilities.    

C.  Use of outdoor facilities may be reserved through the Venue Scheduling Office in two hour block increments for purposes of expressive activity.  Individuals and groups may apply for more than one block of time, which application shall be granted depending on availability.  Individuals and groups may not have more than five permits at any one time, to prevent monopolization of space. 

D.  Semi-permanent structures may be permitted for expressive activity if approved by the Venue Scheduling Office with five days advance notice.  Approval will be based on objective and reasonable guidelines consistent with this policy.

E.  Indoor areas are not generally designated for expressive activities.  Members of the University community who wish to use an indoor area for expressive activity must contact the Venue Scheduling Office.  Where indoor areas are opened to members of the University community for expressive activity, they will be governed by reasonable objective restrictions based on the purpose of the forum.

F.  All activity must be conducted in such a way that traffic is not impeded and the normal activity in classrooms and offices is not disrupted.

G.  The University reserves the right to restrict use of facilities for purposes of planting, reseeding, and other general maintenance and upkeep.

H.  Where space has been reserved for the use of tables or other temporary means for displaying or distributing information, tables or displays shall be removed upon the expiration of the time during which the facilities are being used by the person or organization.  Tables may be requested and reserved from the Venue Scheduling Offices, in accordance with vendor guidelines and fee schedules.

I.  All other requirements of this policy regarding use of space are applicable to use of outside areas.

J.  Demonstrations and Picketing.

1.  Demonstrations and picketing on campus are legitimate means of expression. Conduct shall not materially and substantially disrupt the functioning of the University or interfere with the rights of other members of the University community or damage University or private property. Anyone who wishes to engage in demonstrations and picketing shall be permitted to do so in accordance with all of the time, place and manner restrictions governing expressive activity in this policy including but not limited to the following:

a.      Picketing or demonstrating must be orderly at all times and must not jeopardize public order or safety.

b.      Picketing or demonstrating must not interfere with the entrances to buildings or the normal flow of pedestrian or vehicular traffic.

c.      Picketing or demonstrating must not interfere with organized meetings or other assemblies in such a way as to invade the rights of others to assemble and the rights of speakers to free expression.

d.      Picketing or demonstrating must not interfere with classes and teaching, the use of offices or research facilities, the privacy of University housing, or other University facilities or activities related to its mission.

2.  Persons violating the time, place and manner regulations of this policy may be subject to arrest or other action authorized by law after notice is given of the regulations being violated and the persons refuse to cease and desist in their conduct violating the regulations.

3.  Picketers or demonstrators shall be financially responsible for any damages, including cleanup of litter, caused by their picketing or demonstrating. Damages or litter caused by third parties not part of the picketing or demonstrations shall be assessed against such third parties.

VII.  SOUND AMPLIFICATION EQUIPMENT

Where sound amplification equipment is used on campus, persons or organizations must first obtain permission from the Venue Scheduling Office. Sound equipment shall only be used at sound levels which do not disrupt or disturb legitimate University activities or interests. Violations of this restriction shall constitute grounds for revocation of the permission to use the sound amplification equipment.

VIII.  UNLAWFUL, DEFAMATORY OR OBSCENE SPEECH

Nothing in these regulations shall be construed as authorizing or condoning unlawful, defamatory or obscene speech. Any person engaging in such conduct or using University facilities or grounds to do so shall be subject to the laws and policies governing unlawful, defamatory or obscene speech, including the authority of the University to remove signs, posters, handbills, structures or other unlawful expressions of unlawful, defamatory or obscene speech or publications.

IX.  FOOD AND BEVERAGES 

All food sold and provided on campus must be supplied by University Food Services, approved by the University in an agreement with a user of University facilities, or as otherwise allowed in other sections of the Policies and Procedures Manual, including exceptions allowed under PPM 5-30a.  All food service will be in compliance with University food policies and guidelines. 

X.  CAMPING

A.  In order to protect University property and to protect the safety and health of the University community and the public, camping overnight and lighting or maintaining campfires on University property or living in privately owned, temporary lodging parked or erected on University property is prohibited.

B.  For purposes of this policy, campfire means an outdoor fire, burned in the open or in a receptacle other than a furnace or incinerator, used for the cooking of food or providing personal warmth or for recreational purposes.  Campfire does not mean a University owned barbeque grill or a University owned fire pit operated in accordance with rules governing such use of grills or fire pits.

C.  For purposes of this policy, camping overnight:

1.  Includes any of the following:

a.  Sleeping, at any time between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m., outdoors, with or without bedding, sleeping bag, blanket, mattress, tent, hammock, or other similar protection, equipment or device.

b.  Establishing or maintaining outdoors, at any time between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m., a temporary or permanent place for sleeping or cooking by setting up any bedding, sleeping bag, blanket, mattress, tent, hammock, or other sleeping equipment or by setting up any cooking equipment, with the intent to remain in that location overnight.

2.  Does not include the following:

a.  Waiting in line for the sale of tickets to an event that will take place on University property.

b.  Tail-gating activities on University property within areas designated by the University that occur the night before or the night of a sporting event.  

XI.  PUBLIC SAFETY 

To facilitate scheduling and maintain public safety, any persons wanting to use indoor or outdoor facilities must adhere to University event planning guidelines and coordinate events with Public Safety Entities.  University entities that sponsor, coordinate or allow events are responsible for event security and must coordinate all public safety with Public Safety Entities.  WSU Police Department and other Public Safety Entities, working in coordination with Venue Scheduling Offices will require compliance with event planning guidelines, consistent with this policy, which establish objective standards for determining the need for security and other health and safety requirements.  Individuals or entities wishing to use University facilities will be responsible for the cost of necessary and reasonable health, safety and security needs which exceed the standard costs of public safety.  Such costs will be based on objective criteria and consistently applied.  The University may refuse the use of its facilities to individuals or groups where the proposed activity would require an unreasonable amount of University supervision or service or where there is a question concerning the safety of the participants or University property.  Individuals or entities must follow all state requirements pertaining to public safety.

XII.  DAMAGE TO PROPERTY

Any damage to University or personal property in the course of use of University space is prohibited, including damage to lawns, shrubs, and trees.  Individuals and groups using facilities agree to be responsible for any fees, legitimate out-of-pocket expenses or damages because of the applicant's conduct in use of the facility.  Groups or individuals may be denied future use of facilities upon evidence of misuse. 

XIII.  COMMERCIAL USE 

Retailing, commercial solicitation, canvassing, sponsorship, and marketing activities of any product or service on campus are generally prohibited, except as provided under University vendor guidelines, which may be available from Venue Scheduling Offices.

XIV.  SCHEDULING PROCEDURES AND STANDARDS

A.  Rules, Procedures and Forms

Venue Scheduling Offices shall create written rules and procedures consistent with this policy for regulating the use of University space.  Each office shall create appropriate forms and keep records of all use of University space.

B.  Fees

1.  Any rental fee charged for the use of facilities shall be made in accordance with a uniformly administered schedule of fees adopted by the Venue Scheduling Office.  Such fee schedule shall be approved by President’s Council.  As a general operating practice, the University's fees for use of facilities and services shall not be less than the average charges for comparable facilities or services at private establishments in the community.

2.  Direct expenses may be charged to all groups regardless of their usage category. Direct expenses include, but are not limited to, personnel, equipment, and other associated costs necessary to prepare and operate the facility for the event, and restore the facility to its normal use status following the rental period.

3.  An event deposit may be required. This deposit will be applied to the rental fee unless damage occurs to the facilities, in which case it will be used to cover repairs and/or replacement. Groups or individuals may be denied future use of facilities upon evidence of misuse. Guidelines will be provided to groups or individuals renting facilities. These guidelines will describe University expectations for use of the facilities, including hours of operation, required approvals, expectations for personal behavior, etc.

4.  Individuals or groups requesting use of University facilities shall comply with the insurance requirements of the State of Utah and the Utah Division of Risk Management.  Proof of insurance and endorsement of additional insured may be required prior to using any University owned facilities.  Such information will be available through the University Risk Management Office.

XV.  APPEAL RIGHTS. 

The denial of a reservation request can be appealed to the Vice President for Student Affairs or a designee, in writing, within 10 days of the denial.  The Vice President for Student Affairs or a designee shall hear the appeal and render a decision as soon as practicable but in any event no later than five (5) business days after the date of the appeal.

XVI.  EXCEPTIONS. 

Exceptions to this policy may only be made upon approval by the Vice President for Student Affairs and the Vice President for Administrative Services.  Any exceptions and the reasons therefore will be documented in writing.

XVII.  POSTING AND DISTRIBUTION OF MATERIAL ON CAMPUS

All posting and distribution of material on campus shall be governed by PPM 7-10, Posting and Distribution of Written Materials on Campus.