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Legal Authority of the Trustees

The law that created community and technical colleges created two boards for governance -- the College Board for system governance and a local Board of Trustees to govern each Community and Technical College.

The responsibilities of each local Board of Trustees are (paraphrased from RCW 28B.50.140):

  • Shall operate all existing community and technical colleges in its district;

  • Shall create comprehensive programs of community and technical college education and training and maintain an open-door policy in accordance with the provisions of RCW 28B.50.090(3);

  • Shall employ a college president and fix the duties and compensation;

  • May establish, under the approval and direction of the college board, new facilities as community needs and interests demand. However, the authority of boards of trustees to purchase or lease major off-campus facilities shall be subject to the approval of the higher education coordinating board;

  • May establish or lease, operate, equip and maintain dormitories, food service facilities, bookstores and other self-supporting facilities connected with the operation of the community and technical college;

  • May, with the approval of the college board, borrow money and issue and sell revenue bonds or other evidences of indebtedness for the construction, reconstruction, erection, equipping with permanent fixtures, demolition and major alteration of buildings or other capital assets, and the acquisition of sites, rights-of-way, easements, improvements or appurtenances, for dormitories, food service facilities, and other self-supporting facilities connected with the operation of the community and technical college;

  • May establish fees and charges for the facilities authorized hereunder, including reasonable rules and regulations for the government thereof, not inconsistence with the rules and regulations of the college board;

  • May receive such gifts, grants, conveyances, devises and bequests of real or personal property from private sources, as may be made from time to time, in trust or otherwise, whenever the terms and conditions thereof will aid in carrying out the community and technical college programs as specified by law and the regulations of the state college board; sell, lease or exchange, invest or expend the same or the proceeds, rents, profits and income thereof according to the terms and conditions thereof; and adopt regulations to govern the receipt and expenditure of the proceeds, rents, profits and income thereof;

  • May establish and maintain night schools whenever in the discretion of the board of trustees it is deemed advisable, and authorize classrooms and other facilities to be used for summer or night schools, or for public meetings and for any other uses consistent with the use of such classrooms or facilities for community and technical college purposes;

  • May make rules and regulations for pedestrian and vehicular traffic on property owned, operated, or maintained by the district;

  • Shall prescribe, with the assistance of the faculty, the course of study in the various departments of the community and technical college or colleges under its control, and publish such catalogues and bulletins as may become necessary;

  • May grant to every student, upon graduation or completion of a course of study, a suitable diploma, non-baccalaureate degree or certificate.

  • Shall enforce the rules and regulations prescribed by the state board for community and technical colleges for the government of community and technical colleges, students and teachers, and promulgate such rules and regulations and perform all other acts not inconsistent with law or rules and regulations of the state board for community and technical colleges as the board of trustees may in its discretion deem necessary or appropriate to the administration of college districts;

  • May, by written order filed in its office, delegate to the president or district president any of the powers and duties vested in or imposed upon it by this chapter. Such delegated powers and duties may be exercised in the name of the district board;

  • May perform such other activities consistent with this chapter and not in conflict with the directives of the college board;

  • Notwithstanding any other provision of law, may offer educational services on a contractual basis for a special fee to private or governmental entities, consistent with rules and regulations adopted by the state board for community and technical colleges: PROVIDED, That the whole of such special fee shall go to the college district and be not less than the full instructional costs of such services;

  • Shall be authorized to pay dues to any association of trustees that may be formed by the various boards of trustees; such association may expend any or all of such funds to submit biennially, or more often if necessary, to the governor and to the legislature, the recommendations of the association regarding changes which would affect the efficiency of such association;

  • Subject to the approval of the higher education coordinating board pursuant to the RCW 28B.80.340(4), may participate in higher education centers and consortia that involve any four-year public or independent college or university.

Washington Administrative Code (WAC)

Bylaws of the Board of Trustees