Chair’s Report for April 9, 2002

 

Senate update

1.      Important links to agendas, minutes, Chair's Reports and other sites of interest are available
on the Senate web site: http://www.uwec.edu/Usenate. Senate Chair’s Report will be available on this site by noon the day of the Senate meeting.

2.      For up-to-date news from UW-System, check out: http://www.wisconsin.edu/news/

3.      For up-to-date news from state news sources, check out: http://www.thewheelerreport.com/ 

4.      During debates, Senators may speak only twice to any motion or amendment. Each speaking term is limited to 10 minutes. The Chair will add names of those wishing to speak to a speaker's list upon recognition.

 

Open Forum Items from Senate Executive Committee Meeting minutes

1.      Committee noted there has been a lot of discussion on campus about faculty/academic staff salary package; Would like to consider making statement about classified salary situation; Feel appropriate for Senate to register concern that classified staff are left out of discussion; Have been working without contract since July; Classified staff significantly affected by budget situation; Even if settlement reached, on average could take up to five years to equal dollar amount received this year by faculty; Proposed increase of $20 per month for health insurance would wipe out much of any raise; As workload for faculty and academic staff increases, additional work filters down to classified staff; Also many LTEs on campus in most precarious situation. Discussion of what could be done to recognize service of classified staff followed.

 

Other Items from Senate Executive Committee Meetings

1.      Consensus - if necessary, an extra Senate meeting will be held April 30th rather than an Open Discussion

 

Items discussed with the Senate Chair

1.      A reception will be held to celebrate Kathie Schneider's winning the UW-System Academic Staff Award for Excellence.  The reception will be held on April 17th, from 3:00 to 4:30 in the Wisconsin Room of Davies Center.  Please come and have cake and coffee or punch and help us celebrate with Kathie! – Counseling Services.

 

Faculty Reps Meeting – via teleconference April 5, 2002

1.      Reviewed the Board of Regents meeting recently held (see Regent notes below) and provided update on budget status. System personnel suggested campuses thank the Democrats for supporting the University and encourage both the Democrats and Republicans to fight for parts favorable to the UW System in either plan in the joint conference committee.

2.      George Brooks, Associate Vice President of Human Resources – spoke about early retirement. The Senate Democrats’ plan proposed adding 3 years of service and 2 years of age and $20,000 into sick leave account. It would be a very attractive plan to those interested in retiring within 5 years. Clear that it would require a higher employer contribution in the next few years to make up for those withdrawals. Brooks more concerned with what impact it will have on the System. Brooks says UW would have about 8800 faculty and staff that would qualify under this proposal and well over 35% might take advantage of it which could be devastating to some departments. Have talked about the ability of bringing those people back as reemployed annuitants. If we could bring them back, could save a sizeable amount on the fringe benefit line. There would be a cost. If everyone would leave at the end of June 30, 2003 – would have to pay out an instant tab of over $23 million if all 8800 left in terms of unused vacation, sabbatical time, etc. Not sure what form this will be. Made it clear that cannot have this option without the ability to bring the people back. Under current law cannot have any contract with an employee that says we will reemploy the person. Once an employee retires, we can immediately talk with the person and say ‘after you have been off the payroll for 30 days, you can come back as an employee’. We wouldn’t be allowed to give anyone the fringe benefits if the person were hired back – this is where the savings to the state occurs. Must understand that the state Democrats plan is to reduce the number of state employees. Second goal is to make sure that the state employee unions will not suffer massive layoffs. This is basically mortgaging the future.

3.      George Brooks – pay plan option – controversy since 1983 when stopped 10-payment plan for those hired after 1983. Planned to go to 12-payment plan when in 1987 went to new software. Now in early stages in implementing new payroll-benefits system. In discussion now with vendor (Lawson Software) as to how flexible the system can be. Haven’t resolved this yet. In survey of Big 10 institutions and U of Chicago found that we and only one other institution do not have a 12-month plan for faculty. Currently looking at what options are available and what faculty want. Question: If only ONE way is possible with the new software, which payment option would faculty want to have?

4.      Institutional Senate Reports:  Green Bay – faculty status for IAS, concern about preserving distinction between tenured faculty and untenured faculty; looking at language for tenure review process at university. La Crosse – spending time on budget cuts; strategic plan coming forward, updating after 10 year gap; found no rules governing suspension of a program, only rules for eliminating; approved new admission standards and readmission standards and two new master’s program; recommended to Chancellor to have new joint committee of faculty, staff, classified, and students to look at issues across campus. Milwaukee – took up issue of accreditation, voted to stay with NCA; many discussions on budget, good deal of opposition to early retirement options; discussion of faculty governance especially in terms of committee reporting to faculty; concern about support services, especially for charging students for printing charges of papers. Oshkosh – advising – faculty and students indicate that it is the worst thing we do; talk of more faculty involvement; want some differential tuition for improving this, but if students don’t come up with the money, how will it be funded in times of base budget reductions? Also issue for teaching load – most faculty have load modification plans. How will there be a load change if there is a reduction in instructional staff (using faculty for advising) causing less faculty to teach more; looking into emeriti privileges; students want voting rights in faculty recruitments; proposing a joint conferencing committee that will work out differences before issue goes on. Parkside – budget issues on minds, workload study committee to study if workloads need to be adjusted due to budget cuts. River Falls – going to be considering new mission statement and set of general objectives for general education program; motion to develop a balanced calendar; beginning work on student-faculty evaluations and administrator evaluations. Stevens Point – passed a high tech/high pay program at Senate level, unless budget is worked out, may not fly. Extension – passed motion for right to choose collective bargaining; looking at family leave policy and personnel files policy, especially where files are located – who keeps them, who puts something in the file, and how an individual can get something out of them; looking at budget issues and shared-revenue issues; about 20 people on staff opting for Federal buy-out option for Extension workers causing some concern.

 

Board of Regents Meeting – April 4-5, 2002

1.      The UW System Budget - An Overview: With the State Senate poised to vote on its version of the bill to balance Wisconsin's budget, Regent President Jay Smith started Thursday's meeting by presenting an overview of the UW System budget. His comments focused on answering questions about the UW System budget that have been asked in recent weeks. His presentation (see web site: http://www.wisconsin.edu/news/2002/r020404a.htm )  included several charts and graphs that helped explain the university's extremely complex budget. "During this process, we have all gotten the question: 'Why is a $100 million cut so bad when you have a $3 billion budget?' I want to spend a few minutes today answering that question," Smith said. "One thing we've all learned this past month is how little our budget is understood, at many levels. In the past, we have not done very well at explaining our budget to the public. …. (See Figure 8 enclosed) As you can see, our funding comes from five general sources - the federal government; gifts, grants and contracts; auxiliaries, hospitals and other receipts; fees including tuition; and state GPR funding. Funds that are received from these entities are, for the most part, targeted for very specific areas. As you can see, the bulk of funding from the federal government goes to research, extension and outreach and student financial aid. Funding from gifts, grants and contracts also largely supports research and public service. Our auxiliary funding is used to operate residence halls, student unions, cafeterias, athletics, printing centers, parking, bookstores and the hospital. The major sources of student services and instructional support - that is, the day-to-day teaching in the classroom - are state GPR funding and student fees.  In fact, virtually all student fee money is used for instructional support. Of our state funding, a certain portion is restricted and can only be spent on specific areas designated by state law such as debt service, and utilities.  So the state funding that we control represents about $893 million. Of that, roughly 60 percent goes to instruction and student services. The rest is spent on our physical plant, libraries, technology, farm operation, research, financial aid and administrative support like payroll, personnel, and fiscal management.  This is the key number -- $893 million in state support. That is why a $108 million cut to the UW System would be so damaging - it represents roughly one-eighth of our state operating budget.

2.      Check out the full Board of Regents minutes on the web. http://www.wisconsin.edu/news/2002/r020404b.htm and http://www.wisconsin.edu/news/2002/r020405c.htm . 

3.      Other General Session topics (details in the minutes on the web):

+ Resources: Building Our Resource Base through a number of different options.

+ Quality: Issues Relating to the Future of Academic Libraries, presentation by Ken Frazier, director of the UW-Madison General Library System

+ Milwaukee Partnership Academy with UW-Milwaukee Chancellor Nancy Zimpher presenting a new campus-community partnership to improve the education of children in Milwaukee through better teacher preparation.

+ Celebration of Baldrige award to UW-Stout for quality activity. Chancellor Sorenson reviewed process involved and how the application for Baldrige evolved. (see comments http://www.wisconsin.edu/news/2002/r020404b.htm )

4.      Education Committee: Report on the variety of creative and effective orientation programs for educating students about the sensitive subjects of sexual assault and sexual harassment; Cora Marrett, UW System senior vice president for academic affairs, told committee members that orientation programs are expected to include both oral and written materials covering sexual assault and sexual harassment.

5.      2001-2002 annual report on minority and disadvantaged students. With respect to funding, Marrett reported that in the 2000-2001 academic year nearly $26 million was spent on programs for students of color and disadvantaged students. Approximately half of that funding was raised by the campuses from private sources. The fundraising goes for scholarships, workshops and other creative efforts, Marrett said, and the success of the fundraising "symbolizes the determination across the System." … Funding is used in two general categories: for scholarships to attract and retain students of color and disadvantaged students, and for programs that create supportive, nurturing environments and encourage social integration of students. … UW-Oshkosh Chancellor Richard Wells observed that, with respect to retaining students, "we do not have enough of the right kinds of intervention and support strategies for all students - this is a massive need." Marrett noted that during the upcoming biennial budget discussions the board will be presented with a plan titled "Undergraduate Imperative." Included will be advising and other strategies intended to enhance success for all students, she said.

6.      Heard presentation on a B.S. in Athletic Training at UW-Eau Claire. Regents responded favorably.

7.      UW System President Katharine Lyall gave an update on the status of admissions. Have admitted about half of the 5,500 full-time students authorized by the board last month when it lifted the suspension on undergraduate admissions. Full Text of President Lyall's Report at http://www.wisconsin.edu/news/2002/r020405b.htm

8.      Deferred Maintenance. For the 2001-03 biennium, the UW System's backlog of deferred building maintenance is estimated at $800 million, according to Nancy Ives, assistant vice president for capital planning and budget.  Ives added that the UW spends about $115 million a year on ongoing cyclical maintenance needs.

 

Legislative Update

1.      All the activity surrounds the budget. See http://www.uwsa.edu/univ_rel/govrel/lupdate/index.htm for details.

 

 

Academic Staff Representative’s Report

 

The next Academic Staff Rep’s meeting will be a teleconference on Thursday, April 18, from 9 - 11:00 AM.  Because of travel restrictions, meetings for the remainder of the year will be by teleconference.  Also because of travel restrictions, the annual Leadership Conference has been cancelled.

 

 

Committee Reports

 

Executive Committee – Chair Harrison

Continued discussions about the language of the Nepotism policy and why System Legal doesn’t like our wording. Provost Satz and Chair Harrison will work on new language this summer. The next meeting of the Executive committee will be April 16th at 3:00 PM in Schofield 202.

 

Faculty Personnel Committee – Chair Keniston

Committee has completed its commentary on faculty work load. Document will soon be available from the Senate web site. Final meeting for the semester is April 16, 2:00 PM in the Eagle Room.

 

Academic Staff Personnel Committee – Chair Wilcox

The ASPC will meet this Thursday, April 11, at 2:00 PM in the Birchwood Room.  We will be discussing a motion regarding eligibility for IAS with “faculty status.”

 

Academic Policies Committee – Chair Lozar

Our next meeting will be on April 16--our annual meeting with the University Assessment Committee.

For the record, at our meeting on March 26 we approved the inclusion of Dance (DNCE) and Performing Arts (PA) prefixes for inclusion in GE Category IV, subcategory a. We also approved American Sign Language (CDIS courses 301, 302, and 303) as meeting the foreign language/foreign culture requirement for the baccalaureate degree.

 

Physical Plant Planning Committee – Chair Stuettgen

Physical Plant Planning Committee met on April 2.

Physical Plant Planning committee is currently reviewing:

~ request to increase square footage of hard surface behind Zorn Arena to better accommodate semi trailer and bus traffic related to large performance events presented in the Arena

~ request to review hours of permit parking enforcement (particularly Hibbard, but looking at the entire campus)

~ UW-EC energy conservation efforts

~ progress on the riverbank stability study

Next meeting will be Tuesday, April 16 at 3 pm in the Alumni Room of Davies Center.

 

Budget Committee – Chair Carpenter

The Senate Budget Committee will meet in the Arrowhead Room of Davies Center on Friday, April 19, from 11-12.  Both the Provost and the Chancellor will join us.

 

Compensation Committee – Chair Wick

No report.

 

Nominating Committee – Chair Wendler
             Nominations for Senate Chair-Elect accepted from floor

 

Technology Committee – Chair Lang

Will met with Jim Lowe on April 2nd to get an update on where UWEC is re: admin systems.

1. Tools for data warehousing pilot with Oracle database will be functioning this summer with training this summer or early fall.

2. Request for Service (RFS) for consultant was submitted 3/12 and due date for submissions is 4/4. Senate Tech committee will be represented on working group reading submissions. Senate Tech committee will be organizing meetings of faculty and staff this May when consultants are on campus. Faculty and staff need to be prepared to talk about what they like about what we have now and what they hope to gain.