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May 9, 2001 Minutes

Members present: Hays, chair, Reese, Stutzman, Brennan, McKinney, Skerpan-Wheeler, Stimmel, Blevens, Blanda, Renick, Stone, Gillis, Peeler, Sawey

Guests: Margaret Vaverek, Mike Moore, Ted Hindson

Meeting was called to order at 4:03 pm.

    Hays announced that a post tenure review hearing for Ryan Rudnicki was to be held in the Regents' Room, 11th floor JCK on May 10, 2001, at 9:30 am through 5:00 pm.  The Senators were urged to attend because it was the first post tenure review to reach this point and this process is necessarily of great interest to faculty.

    Diana Hunter, chair of the Faculty Research Committee, presented the Research Enhancement Grant report with funding recommendations.  Senator Renick absented himself from the meeting during this report because he had a proposal under consideration.  The committee recommended funding for 17 of 28 proposals for a total amount of $123.628.00. Dr. Hunter wants to encourage faculty to contact their departmental Research Advisory Committee member for help in submitting proposals for consideration in the Fall.  These representatives are able to critique proposals before they are submitted to ensure that all the requirements of the proposal process have been completed.  There will be substantial funds still available for the Fall round of proposals.  The report of the Faculty Research Committee was accepted by the Senate (Skerpan-Wheeler, Gillis) unanimously.

    The Senate then discussed the newly proposed PPS to regulate and guide the Research Enhancement Grant proposal process.  The major change would be to establish a single proposal cycle in the fall of each year. In addition, the process is to become increasingly quantifiable so that scores can be "normalized" so that proposals from the various disciplines can be better compared.  The discussion was animated.  The item was RTA'd for the next meeting when everyone will have had an
opportunity to study the documents.

    The 42nd Senate then broke for refreshments and said good-bye to exiting Liberal Arts Senator Skerpan-Wheeler.  The 43rd Senate reconvened at 4:50 pm and welcomed Dr. Ted Hindson as the newly elected Senator from Liberal Arts. Senators Reese, Renick and Brennan returned through re-election.

   The Senate then turned to the task of electing new officers. Oren Renick, nominated from the floor and elected unanimously, is the new Faculty Senate Chair. Fred Blevens, nominated from the floor and elected unanimously, is the new Faculty Senate Vice Chair. Joan Hays volunteered to serve as secretary and was unanimously accepted for this position.

    Senator Sawey then introduced a motion concerning the length of time a student may wait before requesting a change of grade.  Recently a student requested that a faculty member change a grade from a class taken 9 years ago.  There is apparently no university policy that limits the amount of time that can pass for a request of this nature.  After a lively discussion that considered state records retention laws and the time that grades must be kept it was moved (Sawey, Stone) that the limitation for changing a grade should be the same as that of an I turning into an F, one year.  This motion was passed unanimously.

    Under old business the Senate looked over the Report of the Staff Council concerning Staff Salary Issues that was sent to the President's Cabinet.  The Senate, after some debate, determined to support the Staff Salary Report (Sawey, Gillis) in principle, as a position paper.

   The Senate then considered the most recent minutes of the Budget Committee report and include in these minutes information concerning the Football Budget as an FYI item.

   Football Budget:

The football deficit projections for the fiscal years 2000-2006 totals almost $5,000,000 ($4,980,000) using the sum of the best case scenarios.  This scenario assumes that ticket sales exceed 17,000, sponsorship revenues increase, travel costs decline, etc. The minimum acceptable scenario (cumulative loss of $6.4 million) requires that 17,000 discounted tickets be sold.  Additionally, this scenario uses the minimum expenses needed to reach and maintain a Division I-A program.  These losses do NOT include the cost of the new stadium. Even the worst case scenario assumes that ticket sales will reach 17,000 by 2006.  Given current attendance of approximately 5000-8000 this seems overly optimistic.

Briefly, the Budget Committee has grave concerns about this plan.  While national exposure may be valuable, is it worth a minimum of $5,000,000, or more likely, much more?

Chair Renick mentioned that the patient satisfaction letters for providers are considered appropriate and acceptable to Bill Fly.

Under new business Senator Blevens expressed concern at the low level of funding granted to the University Star from Student Service Fee monies. This will be an future agenda item.

The Senate decided to meet the last Wednesday of June, July, and August for its summer meetings.  The June and July meeting will begin at 3:00 pm and end at 5:00 pm.  Possible agenda items for the summer were considered.

The minutes from the May 2, 2001 meeting were approved with changes.

The meeting was adjourned at 5:58 pm.