13-200 Corporate Status

The Regents of the University of California is a corporation established under the Constitution of the State of California and charged with the duty under Section 9 of Article IX of the Constitution of the State of California to administer the University as a public trust. The name of the corporation is "The Regents of the University of California." The date of incorporation was June 12, 1868.

Awards of funds for sponsored projects or programs are awards to the corporation and commitments made under awards are commitments of the corporation. The Regents are responsible for the discharge of commitments made in their name by the acceptance of grants and the execution of contracts. University policies govern the administration of all actions under these grants or contracts unless the provisions thereof impose other more restrictive requirements.

13-210 Constitution of the State of California, Article Ix, Section 9

The form and composition of The Regents of the University of California, its duties, and its powers are prescribed in the provisions of Section 9 of Article IX of the Constitution of the State of California. The following are selected excerpts:

Sec. 9. (a) The University of California shall constitute a public trust, to be administered by the existing corporation known as "The Regents of the University of California," with full powers of organization and government, subject only to such legislative control as may be necessary to insure the security of its funds and compliance with the terms of the endowments of the university and such competitive bidding procedures as may be made applicable to the university by statute for the letting of construction contracts, sales of real property, and purchasing of materials, goods, and services. Said corporation shall be in form a board composed of seven ex officio members, which shall be: the Governor, the Lieutenant Governor, the Speaker of the Assembly, the Superintendent of Public Instruction, the president and the vice president of the alumni association of the university and the acting president of the university, and 18 appointive members appointed by the Governor and approved by the Senate, a majority of the membership concurring; provided, however that the present appointive members shall hold office until the expiration of their present terms.

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(d) Regents shall be able persons broadly reflective of the economic, cultural, and social diversity of the state, including ethnic minorities and women. However, it is not intended that formulas or specific ratios be applied in the selection of regents.

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(f) The Regents of the University of California shall be vested with the legal title and the management and disposition of the property of the university and of property held for its benefit and shall have the power to take and hold, either by purchase or by donation, or gift, testamentary of otherwise, or in any other manner, without restriction, all real and personal property for the benefit of the university or incidentally to its conduct; provided, however, that sales of university real property shall be subject to such competitive bidding procedures as may be provided by statute. Said corporation shall also have all the powers necessary or convenient for the effective administration of its trust, including the power to sue and to be sued, to use a seal, and to delegate to its committees or to the faculty of the university, or to others, such authority or functions as it may deem wise. The Regents shall receive all funds derived from the sale of lands pursuant to the act of Congress of July 2, 1862, and any subsequent acts amendatory thereof. The university shall be entirely independent of all political or sectarian influence and kept free therefrom in the appointment of its regents and in the administration of its affairs, and no person shall be debarred admission to any department of the university on account of race, religion, ethnic heritage, or sex.

(g)Meetings of the Regents of the University of California shall be public, with exceptions and notice requirements as may be provided by statute.

The complete text of Article IX, Section 9 is incorporated in Bylaw 5.1, Composition and Powers of the Corporation.

13-220 Bylaws and Standing Orders of the Regents of the University of California

The Bylaws of The Regents of the University of California set forth the composition and power of the corporation, the committees of the Board of Regents, the responsibilities of the Board's standing committees, the duties and responsibilities of the corporation's Officers, and other matters, including those related to procedure. The Standing Orders of The Regents of the University of California set forth duties of the University's Officers and other provisions related to faculty members, employees, the Academic Senate, Academic Units, and the Retirement System. The Bylaws and Standing Orders, including amendments, are maintained and distributed by the Office of the Secretary and Chief of Staff to the Regents.

13-230 Tax Status

Under the Constitutional principle of intergovernmental immunity, governmental entities may not tax each other for performing their governmental activities. Thus, the University, as an instrumentality of the State of California, is not subject to corporate federal income tax on its governmental activities.

In addition, the University of California has been recognized by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) as a tax exempt institution described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. The IRS has also classified the University as not being a private foundation under Section 509(a)(1) of the Internal Revenue Code.

The University's tax exemption applies only to corporate income generated by activities substantially related to the University's exempt functions of education, research, and public service. Corporate income generated by University activities that are not under these rules substantially related to the exempt functions may be classified as "unrelated business income" which is subject to federal income reporting and may be subject to taxation. When it is anticipated that an activity may generate unrelated business income, the potential tax liability and reporting obligations should be among the criteria considered prior to its undertaking. The topic of unrelated business income is discussed in Chapter 7-221 of this Manual.

There is no State Constitutional provision or other statute requiring the University to pay State corporate income taxes. With respect to State property taxes, the University is exempt under Article XIII, Section 3.(d) of the State Constitution from paying tax on University-owned property.

See Chapter 7-221 for information on the University's liability for other federal and State taxes.

13-240 Standing Committees of the Board of Regents

According to the provisions of Bylaw 10.1, Committees of the Board of Regents, Standing Committees, the Board of Regents forms Standing Committees which make recommendations to the Board for action. The following are the Standing Committees of the Board:

  • Committee on Compliance and Audit
  • Committee on Compensation
  • Committee on Educational Policy
  • Committee on Finance
  • Committee on Governance
  • Committee on Grounds and Buildings
  • Committee on Health Services
  • Committee on Investments
  • Committee on Oversight of the DOE Laboratories
  • Committee on Long Range Planning

The responsibilities of each committee are set forth in Bylaw 12, Responsibilities of Standing Committees. The role of the Committee on Educational Policy, regarding contracts and grants, is described in detail in Chapter 1 of this Manual.