Chair’s Report for May 11, 2004


Senate update

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

2.       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.


Senate Actions signed off by the Chancellor

1.       Election of Faculty Representative

2.       Election of Academic Staff Representative


Open Forum Items from Senate Executive Committee Meeting minutes

1.       Alex Smith brought forward issue on behalf of Mathematics Department. Fullbright Scholar returning to campus from Gaza, Palestine, emailed horror story about treatment by INS. Eventually scholar returned to Gaza because of threats and fear. Chancellor Mash indicated Karl Markgraf aware of situation and working on it with Jan Morse and Fullbright people. Will check into situation and communicate with Math Department

2.       Michelle Washebek, president of conservation group on campus came to follow up on passage by Student Senate of resolution calling for use of 100% post-consumer recycled paper on campus. Petition signed by many students willing to pay extra fees to support. Wished at very least to see increase in percentage of use of post-consumer waste paper. Can refer to Physical Plant Planning Committee for review of issue – motions from Student Senate not automatically placed on Senate agenda. When Student Senate originally passed resolution, Vice Chancellor for Business and Student Services analyzed possibilities. Problems arose because of state contracts and increased costs. Involved not only higher purchasing costs, but increased maintenance costs and reliability problems for high speed printers using the lower quality, more dusty post-consumer recycled papers. Willing to take another look at this time to see if marketplace has changed


Faculty Reps Meeting – teleconference April 30th

1.       Most of the time was consumed with discussing how to make sure those external to the System understand how valuable sabbaticals are. Suggested that when the guidelines for the next round of sabbaticals is published by System, more details be included on how to clearly state the purpose of the sabbatical and how it benefits the students, the discipline, and/or the community.

2.       Next meeting date to be determined.


Board of Regents Meeting – May 6th & 7th in Madison

 (notes from News Summaries at

1.       Building upon months of collaboration between the University of Wisconsin System and the Wisconsin Technical College System, the UW System Board of Regents approved updated credit transfer policies on Friday (May 7) at the conclusion of its May meeting. The changes, approved unanimously, will:

  • Enable UW institutions to transfer technical college credits earned in occupational/technical courses on a course-by-course basis;
  • Increase to 30 the number of general education credits students may transfer to UW institutions from technical college applied associate degree programs; and
  • Permit students who complete a newly aligned WTCS liberal arts associate degree at MATC-Madison, MATC-Milwaukee, or Nicolet Area Technical College, to satisfy university-wide general education requirements at any UW institution.

The regents delayed action on the approval to Friday’s meeting to ensure that students transferring to UW institutions from UW Colleges and WTCS institutions would receive equal treatment with regard to how courses transfer and fulfill requirements.

2.       The UW System’s biennial budget request for the 2005-07 state budget cycle could include several items that stem from the regents study of the university’s future, titled “Charting a New Course for the UW System,” Freda Harris, UW System vice president for budget and planning, told the board on Friday. “The university is striving to maximize its positive impact on the state’s economic growth,” Harris said. “It all begins with students.” The request could also help further Gov. Jim Doyle’s Grow Wisconsin plan, which seeks to grow a high-end economy for the state, by educating citizens who can earn higher incomes, contribute to the state’s workforce and help attract new companies to Wisconsin.

One recommendation would ask the state to restore 300 faculty positions to the UW System in 2005-07, Harris said. The UW System has lost more than 600 faculty in the past decade, yet at the same time, has increased enrollment by more than 9,000 students. Restoring the faculty positions, which would cost an estimated $38.7 million in state funding, would allow improved student-faculty contact and could increase retention and graduation rates, yielding additional graduates eligible to work in Wisconsin, Harris said.

Another recommendation, from the Educational Quality Working Group, would seek to move faculty salaries in line with peer levels. Nationally, salaries at public universities increased 2.1 percent in 2003-04, while the state of Wisconsin approved a 0 percent pay plan for university employees in 2003-04 and a 1 percent pay plan in 2004-05, Harris said. To avoid a staffing crisis, maintain instructional quality, and help close the UW System’s 6 percent salary gap, the university may request an estimated $80 million in state funding.

The UW System’s two-year budget request could also include $10.6 million in funding to support technology and library infrastructure and programming. Harris noted that the recommendations would align with the priorities of the United Council of UW Students and follow recommendations the board heard in March about financial aid, recruitment and retention. The board is expected to begin reviewing the UW System’s 2005-07 budget request at its June meeting.

3.       One hundred faculty and staff members, who work for institutions throughout the University of Wisconsin System, were named the system’s first “Wisconsin Idea Fellows” for their extraordinary public service contributions, including outstanding service to local communities, research and outreach to businesses and nonprofits alike, and contributions through their fields of study to the quality of life and the economy of Wisconsin.


David Franks, Professor, Special Education - Franks received the Reta and David Martell Distinguished Service Award from the Eau Claire Association for Retarded Citizens in 2003 and was recognized by the Eau Claire Area School District's Early Childhood Special Education staff for 20 years of service in 2000.

Eric Jamelske, Assistant Professor of Economics and co-Director of the Chippewa Valley Center for Economic Research and Development  - Jamelske spearheads several new initiatives to provide economic expertise to the Chippewa Valley business community and often joins other faculty to make presentations to local business groups.

Kevin Jones, Director, Small Business Development Center - Jones, selected by his peers as the outstanding SBDC staff member for 2003, works to connect the campus and community in regional and economic development though many activities, including the Angel Investors group, Innovation Center, Momentum Chippewa Valley, and Entreprenurial Training.

Kevin Klatt, Assistant Professor, Psychology - Klatt is the director of the UW-Eau Claire Campus Autism Program, in which students provide behavioral interventions for young children with autism. He has been instrumental in influencing state and local funding policies to expand treatment options for autistic children.

Karen Maddox, Professor, School of Nursing - Maddox served on the Health Communities 2000 Committee in Eau Claire County, is involved with Chippewa County Healthy People 2010, and is an integral part of the National Youth Sports Program, held at UW-Eau Claire each year.

Andrew Phillips, Chair and Professor, Department of Computer Science - Phillips has developed collaborations with local industries such as Silicon Logic Engineering and Cray, Inc., and has partnered with Chippewa Valley Technical College and UW-Stout to help meet the engineering needs of the Chippewa Valley.

Chris Theo, Head of the Graphic Design program in the Dept. of Art & Design - Theo expanded UW-Eau Claire's working relationship with local nonprofit organizations by connecting Graphic Design students with business and organizations in developing visual identity systems, stimulating economic growth while providing students "real world" experience.


Legislative Update

(notes from the Legislative Updates at

1.       Earlier last week Assembly Republicans held a closed caucus to discuss TABOR. Senate Republicans will caucus this week on TABOR, amid indications that the Senate is in favor of what is described as a “TABOR-lite” proposal – i.e., a constitutional amendment that might simply say that state expenditures cannot exceed revenues. Procedurally, the Legislature must act on language by August 1, 2004. The UW Board of Regents has already passed a resolution opposing TABOR, as did the Wisconsin Technical College System Board. The Badger Action Network (BAN) communicated with its several thousand members about the issue earlier this week.

2.       The Senate is scheduled to hold a Veto Review Session Tuesday, May 11 to consider the Revisor's bills (SB-557 through SB-564) and appointments by the Governor.  In addition, the Senate may take up legislation that JCOER is expected to pass on Tuesday (see below). JCOER is expected to make adjustments to treat non-represented UW employees the same as other state employees relative to health insurance payments.

3.       The Assembly will hold its Veto Review Session on Wednesday, May 19.

4.       An extraordinary legislative session on health care is likewise planned for Wednesday, May 19, in both houses.  The Medical Assistance bill, and two other health-care related bills, are among those being considered. A vote on a “property tax freeze” proposed by Speaker Gard may take place later this month in concert with a modified constitutional amendment to limit state spending.

5.       The Senate Higher Education and Tourism Committee and the Assembly Colleges and Universities Committee held a joint session on Thursday, May 6.  UW System President Katharine C. Lyall, Regent President Toby Marcovich and Regent Guy Gottschalk updated both committees on the status of the “Charting a New Course for the UW System” study and the impact of budget cuts to the university.  President Lyall also delivered a brief presentation on access, quality and financial aid during which she was joined by UW-Madison Dean Phil Certain and UW-Eau Claire Chancellor Don Mash. Following the UW System presentations, the two committees heard about the benefits of Wisconsin’s membership in the Midwest Higher Education Compact (MHEC) from MHEC representatives and from the United Council of UW Students regarding their 2005-07 budget priorities.

6.       On Tuesday, May 4, the Joint Committee on Audit approved a request by Sen. Rob Cowles (R-Green Bay) to audit the State Vehicle Fleet. According to the Legislative Audit Bureau, among the items the audit will address are:

  • An analysis of the number of vehicles owned and leased;
  • A review of how decisions to personally assign vehicles are made and monitored, including how agencies determine whether it is less costly to pay employees mileage for use of their own personal vehicles rather than to purchase state vehicles;
  • A determination of the extent to which state employees have reimbursed the State for personal mileage on state vehicles and whether existing policies appropriately limit the personal use of state vehicles.

7.       The Joint Committee on Employment Relations (JCOER) will meet at 9:30 a.m. on Tuesday, May 11 in Room 412 East, State Capitol. Topics include:

·         Public hearing and possible executive action on recommendations of the Director of the Office of State Employment Relations (OSER) for modifications of the 2003-05 compensation and benefit adjustments for UW System senior executives, faculty and academic staff;

·         Public hearing and possible executive action on the 2003-05 tentative agreement between the state and the WSEU, AFSCME Council 24 professional social services collective bargaining unit;

·         Public hearing and possible executive action on recommendations of the OSER Director for modifications to the 2003-05 compensation plan for classified and certain unclassified employees;

·         Public hearing and possible executive action on recommendations of the OSER Director to assign division administrator positions to Executive Salary Groups.