Finance and Facilities committee

Finance and Facilities committee

The role of the Standing Committee on Finance and Facilities is to assist the University Council in fulfilling its responsibilities relating to the acquisition, development and maintenance of University buildings and grounds, and the financial and investment planning, policy and performance of the University and each of its business enterprises and controlled entities.

Terms of Reference

Version 1 - Approved by Macquarie University Council 10 April 2014

1. Purpose of Committee

1.1 To assist the Council in fulfilling its responsibilities relating to the  acquisition, development and maintenance of University buildings and grounds, and the financial and investment planning and performance of the University and each of its business enterprises. This includes, but is not limited to:

1.1.1 Tenders;

1.1.2 Leases;

1.1.3 Project contractual arrangements;

1.1.4 Budgets (including the recommendation of the University's Consolidated Budget to the Council for approval);

1.1.5 Investments;

1.1.6 Borrowings;

1.1.7 Guarantees;

1.1.8 Management Finance Reports;

1.1.9 Fees and charges (excluding audit fees);

1.1.10 Debtors.

1.2 Infrastructure

1.2.1 Asset management;

1.2.2 Space usage;

1.2.3 Capital project oversight;

1.2.4 Sustainability;

1.2.5 Campus development and maintenance, and

1.2.6 Campus traffic management.

2. Authority and scope

2.1 The Committee has delegated authority to:

2.1.1 Approve and monitor financial systems of control and accountability for the University, including Schedule of Financial Delegations.

2.1.2 Review University's financial performance against budget on a quarterly basis for report to Council.

2.1.3 Approve disposal of property off campus within the limitations of the MQU Act.

2.1.4 Review a periodic report from the Director, Property on:

  • Sustainability initiatives, including waste management; and
  • Energy and water consumption.

2.1.5 Take remedial action that may be required where project status indicates that contractual arrangements are not being met for sums >$3M up to $50M.

2.1.6 Approve acquisition and transfer of property for sums >$3M up to $50M.

2.1.7 Approve maintenance and renovation arrangements of University property for sums >$3M up to $50M.

3. Membership and term of office

3.1 Membership

  • Chancellor
  • Deputy Chancellor
  • Vice-Chancellor
  • Five members of the University Council who are external to the  University to be elected

Where a position is not specified, Committee Members will be appointed by Council.

3.1.1 At least two members of the Committee should be persons with relevant financial, commercial or legal qualifications and experience at senior level.

3.2 Chair of Committee

3.2.1 The Council will appoint one of the members of the Committee to be Chair.

3.3 Term of office

3.3.1 Non ex-officio members are appointed for a two-year term.

4. Responsibilities

4.1 Oversee, monitor and review:

  • The Capital Management Plan;
  • The University Concept Plan;
  • Business case development for all projects;
  • Project status against contractual arrangements for all projects listed in the Capital Management and Campus Development plans;
  • The development, protection and exploitation of University Intellectual Property, as distinct from real property.

4.1.1 Recommend to Council:

  • New projects within either the Capital Management Plan or the Campus Development Plan;
  • Variations to budgets for projects listed within either the Capital Management Plan or the Campus Development Plan;
  • Remedial action for sums greater than $50M that may be required where project status indicates that contractual arrangements are not being met;
  • The approval of off-campus property acquisition, maintenance, renovation, development and/or disposal for sums greater than $50M.

4.1.2 Recommend to the Chief Operating Officer

  • University policy with regard to buildings and grounds, including, but not limited to, requirements for business case development, due diligence, and environmental impact and risk assessment.
  • University policy governing property development and management, including, but not limited to:
    • Land use;
    • Physical planning and space usage;
    • Development objectives and long‐term leasing-Previously Council.

4.1.3 Take remedial action for sums less than $50M, that may be required where project status indicates that
contractual arrangements are not being met.

4.1.4 Report to the University Council with regard to the exercise of its [the Committee's] powers relating to
Division 2 of the Act dealing with Property, including, but not limited to, acquisition, maintenance, lease
arrangements, and transfer.

4.1.5 Approve off‐campus property acquisition, maintenance, renovation, development and/or disposal for sums less
than $50M.  

4.2 Financial Management and Investment

4.2.1 Receive the minutes of the Investment Policy Advisory Committee and review its recommendations;

4.2.2 Review the University's financial performance against budget on a quarterly basis, including, but not limited to, income and expenditure, asset management, replacement and disposal, debtors (including write‐offs), investments and ratings of investment products;

4.2.3 Make recommendations to Council with respect to the approval of:

  • The annual budget and budgeting process;
  • Quarterly performance reports against budget;
  • Investment;

4.2.4 Review and assist in establishing financial performance indicators and the monitoring of these indicators;

4.2.5 Approve and monitor financial systems of control and accountability for the University, including Schedule of Financial Delegations.

4.3 Review and Reporting

4.3.1 Oversee and review the results of the University's financial, asset management and credit processes, and accompanying policies and procedures;

4.3.2 Oversee and review reporting processes in the area of budgeting, including examination of the reasons behind any material variances from budgets;

4.3.3 Oversee and review business case development for all major commercial activities within the University, including but not limited to major commercial/construction projects;

4.3.4 Review, monitor and make recommendations to Council with respect to the University's Financial Delegations instruments and accompanying policies and procedures, including, but not limited to, the extent and duration of financial delegations granted to University officers;

4.3.5 Review, monitor and make recommendations to the University Council in relation to:

  • Sustainability initiatives, including waste management, and energy and water consumption;
  • Changes that may be necessary from time to time, or as the Committee deems appropriate, to the administrative structures, policies and practices in place and physical plan, including grounds, buildings and infrastructure.

4.3.6 Review a periodic report from the Director, Property and approve actions in relation to:

  • Control of vehicular and pedestrian traffic;
  • Campus aesthetics, including landscaping and signage.

5. Administrative arrangements

5.1 Meetings

5.1.1 Meetings shall be held not less than five times per year.

5.1.2 A schedule of potential meeting dates will be prepared annually by the Governance Unit and aligned to meetings of the University Council.

5.1.3 The Chair may approve, in consultation with the Chair of another committee or body of the University, a joint meeting to consider matters of mutual interest.

5.1.4 Meetings may be held using any form of technology that is approved by Council for Council meetings.

5.1.5 A minimum of four Committee members is the quorum.

5.1.6 Any member of Council may attend a meeting of the Finance and Facilities Committee as an observer.

5.1.7 The Chair may approve the attendance from time to time of any other persons who might provide assistance to the Committee in the performance of its responsibilities.

5.1.8 The following persons may generally attend meeting of the Committee;

  • Chief Operating Officer
  • Chief Financial Officer
  • Director Property
  • General Counsel

5.1.9 The members of the Committee may meet without other persons present for such a period as may be determined
by the Chair.

5.2 Secretarial support, Agendas and Minutes

5.2.1 The University will provide a secretary for the Committee after consultation with the Chair.

5.2.2 Agendas will be approved by the Chair and circulated to Committee members at least one week prior to the meeting.

5.2.3 Draft Minutes of Committee meetings will be circulated to Committee members for comment and review within ten working days of the date of the meeting of which they are a record.

5.2.4 The Agenda and confirmed Minutes of the Committee are to be distributed to:

  • Chief Operating Officer
  • Chief Financial Officer
  • Director, Human Resources
  • Chief Information Officer
  • Director Property

5.3 Committee powers

5.3.1 In exercising its responsibilities under Section 4, the Committee may require the production and submission of reports, documents, advice and other additional material as is deemed necessary.

5.3.2 The Committee shall have such resources as are necessary to ensure it can undertake its responsibilities in a timely, independent and efficient manner.

5.4 Conflicts of interest

5.4.1 Committee members must declare any conflicts of interest at the start of each meeting in relation to any item for discussion.

5.5 Self evaluation

5.5.1 The Council, in consultation with the Chair of the Committee will establish a mechanism to review and report on the performance of the Committee, including the performance of the Chair, and each member, at least annually.  The review will be conducted on a self-assessment basis (unless otherwise determined by the Council) with appropriate input sought from the Council, the internal and external auditors, management any other relevant stakeholders, as determined by the Council.

5.6 Reporting requirements

5.6.1 Minutes of the Committee will be reported to Council at the next meeting of Council.

6. Review

6.1 At least once a year the Committee will review its Terms of Reference.

7. Version history

7.1 Approval authority

7.1.1 Council

7.2 Version 1 date

7.2.1 10 April 2014

7.3 Subsequent versions

7.3.1

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Members

(as at November 2015)

* The Chancellor and Deputy Chancellor are members of the committee by virtue of their office, in accordance with the provisions of Section 21 of the Macquarie University By-Law 2005.

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