Agenda — August 6, 1997

9:30 a.m.–Meeting, Assembly Room of Wilson Library

I. Call to Order

 

II. Welcome Guests, Members of the Press

* Welcome to New Delegates Pat Bigelow, Mitch Copeland

 

III. Opening Remarks

* Executive Vice Chancellor Elson Floyd

 

IV. Special Presentations

* Senator Eleanor Kinnaird

* Sexual Harrassment Officer Judith Scott

 

V. Employee Presentations—Janet Tysinger

 

VI. Human Resources Update

* Laurie Charest, Associate Vice Chancellor, Human Resources

 

VII. Approval of Minutes of the July 2, 1997 meeting

 

VIII. Unfinished Business

* Consideration of Forum Guidelines Revisions (Second Reading)

 

IX. New Business

* Special Presentation from Management of Tar Heel Temporaries (First Reading)

* Special Presentation on New Person Identification System (First Reading)

 

X. Chair’s Report (Executive Committee): Bob Schreiner

* Joint Staff Assembly Meeting August 1 at Appalachian State

* Executive Committee Discussion of TOPS Program, Publicity of In-Range Salary Adjustment Opportunities

* June 11 Community Meeting Minutes Complete

* Suggestion for Forum, Committee Schedule Calendar for Inclusion in Annual Report

* Forum Committee, Divisional Rosters Updated

 

XI. Committee/Task Force Reports

* Nominating—Libby Evans

=> Nomination Process

* Orientation—Joyce Dalgleish/Jeffery Beam

=> October 24 Orientation Planning

=> Five Year Reunion

* Personnel Policies—Peter Schledorn

=> Exempt Employees Work Schedule (Comp Time) Discussions

=> Reclassification Question from UNC Physicians & Associates Employees

 

* Compensation and Benefits—Tommy Brickhouse

=> Revision of In-Range Salary Adjustment Fact Sheet

* Public Affairs—Ruth Lewter/Anne Montgomery

* Recognition and Awards—Laura Grady/Nancy Klatt

* University Committee Assignments—Anne Montgomery/Tommy Nixon

=> Vacancies on University Athletic Council, Buildings & Grounds

* Career Development—Norm Loewenthal

=> Career Growth Discussion

=> New Careers Training Board—George Sharp

* Employee Presentations—Janet Tysinger

=> Ideas for Fall Community Meeting

* University Gazette Insert Task Force—Bob Schreiner

=> Story Assignments

* School Volunteerism Task Force—Libby Evans

* Faculty Council Liaisons

* Partner Benefits—Peter Schledorn

* Legislative Affairs—Tom Sullivan

* Transportation and Parking Advisory Committee Representative—Janet Tysinger

* Outsourcing Team Representatives—Bennie Griffin/Ann Hamner

 

XII. Announcements/Questions

 

XIII. Adjournment

MINUTES

August 6, 1997

Delegates Present

Milton Anthony

Jeffery Beam

Pat Bigelow

Tommy Brickhouse

Lucille Brooks

Eddie Capel

Joyce Dalgleish

Libby Evans

Betty Geer

Tommy Gunter

Thomas Holmes

Steve Jones

Jerry Hall

Phil Hearne

Norm Loewenthal

Connie McPherson

Anne Montgomery

Tommy Nixon

Jackie Overton

Archie Phillips, Jr.

Peter Schledorn

Bob Schreiner

Stephanie Stadler

Cheryl Stout

Nancy Tannenbaum

Janet Tysinger

Chien-Hsin Wagner

Dail White

Beverly Williams

Mary Woodall

Laurie Charest”

 

Delegates Absent

Mitch Copeland

Joseph Ellison

Thomas Goodwin

Laura Grady

Bennie Griffin

Jerry Hall

Bettye Jones

Nancy Klatt

Ruth Lewter

Tricia Mitchell

Rosa Nolen

Frances Rountree

Diana Saxon

George Sharp

Jamie Spruiell

Reba Sullivan

Ann Hamner “

” = Ex-Officio

 

Alternates Present

Donnie Apple

Linda Drake

 

Guests

Ann Dodd

Elson Floyd

Mike Hobbs

Mitch Kokai

Liz Lucas

Judith Scott

 

 

Call to Order, Welcome to Guests

Chair Bob Schreiner called the meeting to order at 9:31 a.m., asking members to sign in and to examine the routing file as it was passed around the room. He welcomed recently promoted Delegates Pat Bigelow and Mitch Copeland, and other guests and members of the press. Finally, the Chair welcomed Executive Vice Chancellor Elson Floyd to give opening remarks.

 

Opening Remarks

Floyd began by announcing that the University would provide additional funds to support the Employee Appreciation Fair. He said that the University would be steadfast in its support of the Fair and that the Fair reflects the University’s continued appreciation of its Employees. Floyd said the Fair was a wonderful occasion to stop and reflect on the work of the past year.

Floyd thanked the Chair and other Employees who volunteered or donated blood at the University Blood Drive July 31. The Drive had been by all accounts a great success, and the University was grateful for Employees’ contributions.

Noting the huge renovation of Lenoir Hall and the construction of Lenoir Pavilion, Floyd apologized for the difficulties involved in navigating North Campus. He had asked workers in construction to examine building a bridge to provide better access to Hamilton Hall and the Union, but was told that this project was not possible due to safety concerns. The University has been very active in exploring methods to deal with the traffic flow problems which should only increase once students return for the fall semester. Floyd asked that Employees who happen upon any creative solutions to this problem pass these on to his office.

The University will be greatly challenged to provide food service for students during the next two years of construction. This task will be accomplished by redirecting students to other facilities around campus. A recently constructed food pavilion near the visitors parking lot at Hanes Hall should help alleviate congestion, but students, faculty and staff will need to grow accustomed to eating somewhere besides Lenoir Hall.

Floyd was confident that once the University has endured these two years the renovations will make Lenoir a much more attractive and useful part of campus. Improvements will range from late-night food service to coffee shops for students studying in the Undergraduate Library.

Given the proliferation of construction projects across campus, the University needs to be mindful of its disabled students when they return in the fall. Construction trucks will necessarily travel on brick sidewalks and will cause some attendant damage. The University has a very good disability section which will work to orient disabled students, particularly visually impaired students, who now face new difficulties in navigating campus. He hoped that the entire University community would pitch in to make the campus more accessible for these people.

Floyd noted the widely publicized set of grievances that members of the Grounds department recently filed. The administration has created an ad hoc committee to examine the breadth of issues raised in this grievance. Unfortunately, these Employees have elected to utilize the formal grievance process, and this process is somewhat rigid in the timelines imposed on grievants and the University. Robert Cannon, the University’s Equal Opportunity Officer, has agreed to chair the five member ad hoc committee that will interview all groundskeepers involved in this concern. The committee will consider a plethora of information related to groundskeepers, including salary information and other data.

Floyd felt it was essential for the University to construct a quick and effective response on this issue, and felt that the administration had effectively moved to accomplish this goal by establishing the ad hoc committee immediately following the groundskeepers’ press conference. Floyd thought it would be more effective for those with similar concerns to approach administrators directly before resorting to the grievance process. He asked that Employees approach the administration directly with other such areas of concern.

Floyd mentioned the establishment of the University Priorities and Budget Committee (UPBC). The UPBC will assemble a broad range of individuals to examine University institutional priorities, issues and concerns based on the leadership of Chancellor Hooker. Members would soon undergo two orientation sessions, and the Chair of the Forum is a member of this committee. Fundamentally, the group will examine University priorities and methods to fund these priorities. Floyd thought the committee’s work should provide a better understanding of how the University will establish a support base for a continuum of concerns, ranging from high priority to low priority.

In addition to the challenge presented by limited eating facilities, Floyd mentioned the problem of overcrowding in the residence halls. However, he said this was a delightful problem to have in comparison with other institutions that commonly struggle with enrollment. He preferred dealing with the problems of greater, rather than lesser, demand on campus resources.

Floyd commended University Housing for its superb job in managing the influx of students, particularly since residence halls and classrooms are also undergoing renovation. The sum of construction and renovation projects will add to the general crowding situation on campus.

It appears that the Legislature will remain in session until at least the end of the month. Floyd noted that the General Assembly was considering salary increases for State employees of around 3-4%, although a final figure was still uncertain. He felt that the University has a very good group of individuals providing leadership in the General Assembly, and has benefited from other strong and well-placed supporters.

Floyd offered to receive questions from the Forum. Nancy Tannenbaum asked if there was any news regarding student tuition issues. Floyd did not know what would happen in this area, stating that most budgetary matters are usually deferred until the end of the legislative session. He would let the Forum know when more information is available.

Given the large number of classroom renovations to be carried out over the next two years, Mary Woodall thought it would be helpful to keep students apprised that traditional classroom times may not be available. She thought there should be more communication to let students know that there would be fewer classes scheduled at 10, 11, and 12 p.m., simply because of a lack of classroom space. Floyd said this was a good suggestion and that his office would get this information out as quickly as possible.

Jeffery Beam noted the amount of media coverage concerning Chancellor Hooker’s push for a performance arts center on or near campus. He wondered how this project fit into plans for science classrooms and science libraries, among other needs.

Floyd said that the Chancellor had spoken repeatedly about his passion to build a performing arts center, and hopes to position this center in a way to contribute to the revitalization of downtown Chapel Hill. He thought it was important for the University to determine how its needs can dovetail with those of the Town. Floyd said that Jonathan Howes, the newly appointed director of University Outreach, will work with the Town’s leadership on this and other topics. The University will also need to engage legislators in this discussion. Floyd reported that a major sticking point in negotiations has been the center’s eventual location; generally, however, the idea has received a broad range of support from community members.

However, Floyd felt that Beam had raised a more fundamental issue: what course is the University taking in relation to campus facilities? To begin, Floyd reiterated that the University will continue to rely on close consultation with community members that was utilized in successfully addressing long-range land use planning issues.

As important as it is for the University to plan its management of parking and transportation issues into the next century, it is equally important that it plan its placement of new and different facilities on its central campus. Floyd thought that the University has done a very good job in anticipating needs on its the outlying properties, but perhaps has not been as successful in planning for central campus.

Soon the University will issue a request for proposals (RFP) to hire independent firms to aid in updating the master plan for central campus. The plan has changed significantly since its last update in the mid- to late-1980s. Administrators will begin immediately to create and develop the RFP and to consider the composition of the group that will examine submitted proposals. Floyd thought such an update was overdue since the campus has utilized somewhat of a piecemeal approach to building issues.

Eddie Capel asked about the progress of the Vice Chancellor for Administration search. Floyd replied that particular search had been a long process. The University has interviewed five candidates, and would interview another in the next couple of weeks. After this final interview, Floyd hoped the University will be able to settle on the proper candidate for the position. He noted that the Chancellor is planning to give opening remarks at the next Forum meeting and may then be able to announce an appointment.

However, almost all other vacancies on campus have been filled, and Floyd said the University should be proud of the quality of the people appointed to fill these positions. He thought the placement of this new group of faces marks the beginning of a very exciting time in the University’s history.

Stephanie Stadler noted that Garland Hershey was stepping down from his position as Vice Provost for Health Affairs. Would this position be filled following his departure? Floyd said that Provost Dick Richardson was examining this question and had yet to make a decision. Nancy Tannenbaum asked if there was an appointment forthcoming for the head of the Admissions Department. Floyd said that this search has begun; three people have been interviewed and one more is scheduled for the next week. He thought the conclusion of this search should closely match the original target date of September 1.

Capel noted that there seem to be a number of Employees in key positions retiring from the University, among them Director of Scholarships and Student Aid Eleanor Morris and University Cashier Kermit Williams. He asked what plans were in place to maintain continuity of operations at the University. Floyd said that the University was tremendously in the debt of Morris, Williams, and other long-time Employees contemplating retirement, for the leadership and direction they have provided the campus. He thought their work spoke to the quality of the people working at this institution. Floyd had worked with Williams and Morris for a rather long time, and said it would be almost impossible to fill their particular absences given the dedication, commitment and quality that each brought to their posts.

However, the University must move forward to fill these posts. Floyd believed that Associate Vice Chancellor for Finance Roger Patterson has already begun the search process for the University Cashier, and the search process for Director of Scholarships would also start soon. Nevertheless, Floyd said Morris and Williams have been sustaining members of this institution who possess a strength of character that others will be hard pressed to match.

Yet, Floyd thought that as such departures occur, they provide an opportunity to pursue more efficient ways to manage operations, in light of today’s influx of information technologies. The University is working to utilize these technologies very aggressively. Both the Cashier’s Office and Student Aid thus have changed and will further change in a multitude of ways. Candidates to lead these areas may thus require a slightly different sets of skills than their predecessors.

Floyd asked if there were any other questions, and said that he had enjoyed the chance for discussion. He hoped that members had the chance over the summer to enjoy vacation time with family and friends.

Libby Evans, following on the Jeffery Beam’s question, noted that the Forum will soon produce an insert for the University Gazette. The insert will provide information about the Forum and Employee issues to the campus community. She thought that any news on a revised master plan for developing central campus would be of interest to readers. Evans asked if documents related to the master plan are available in a form which Employees can study.

Floyd responded that the Administration will hire a firm to research proposals for revising central campus. As this work is done, there will be a series of open forums at which community members can examine proposals and provide suggestions. He recalled that this was a strength of the collaborative process to evaluate uses of the Horris Williams and Mason Farm tracts. Evans asked if Employees will have a chance to examine the final draft of the master plan, and Floyd replied that they absolutely would. He said that the University wishes to gain as much feedback as possible in everything it undertakes, because we all are members of the greater community and have something to offer.

The Chair thanked Floyd for his remarks. He was particularly pleased to hear the news concerning an expansion of funds for the Employee Appreciation Fair. In addition, he was happy to note that the Forum Chair has been included as a representative of staff Employees on the University Priorities and Budget Committee.

 

Special Presentations

Due to unforeseen circumstances, Senator Eleanor Kinnaird was unable to make her scheduled special presentation to the Forum. (She later contacted the Forum Office in hopes of rescheduling her presentation.)

The Chair welcomed Judith Scott, the University Sexual Harassment Officer, to give a special presentation on the revised Sexual Harassment policy. Scott recalled that the Chancellor’s Office annually mails copies of the sexual and racial harassment to all staff and faculty members with a cover letter emphasizing the importance of observing each policy. This fall, the University’s sexual harassment policy will look very different as the Sexual Harassment Advisory Committee has recommended significant revisions. Scott anticipated that most people would be very pleased with the committee’s proposals.

The central aspects of the policy, such as definitions of sexual harassment and procedures by which complaints are handled, will remain the same. However, the presentation of the policy has been reorganized into a different format, emphasizing key topics and providing a more logical flow of information. In addition, the committee simplified the policy’s language and structure to improve readability.

Secondly, the section on student issues has been expanded to provide clearer information to help students resolve their concerns. Perhaps most importantly, the section on administrative review contains additional information that significantly addresses questions and concerns raised in the last four and a half years.

Scott hoped that members would consult with their co-workers and provide her office with feedback on the policy. She offered to respond to members’ questions and concerns, noting that the policy had just been distributed and listeners may be pressed to raise questions immediately. Members had no questions on the policy. Scott reiterated that she would remain available to respond to members’ concerns.

 

Employee Presentations

Janet Tysinger reported there were no Employee presentations scheduled for this month. However, Sandra Brooks-Mathers is scheduled to present in September on “Taste of the Arts,” a program recently opened to staff Employees that involves 7 different departments in its promotion (Playmakers, Morehead Planetarium, Ackland, Black Cultural Center, Carolina Union, Music Department, and Botanical Gardens).

 

Human Resources Update

Associate Vice Chancellor Laurie Charest said she had a brief report after Floyd’s legislative update. She had no additional information to report on the budget bill since last month. However, she understood SPA Grievance Bill nor the Discipline Disclosure Act appear to be active, while the long-term care benefits provision still seems to be alive, with perhaps a 50% chance of passage.

Charest said that Employees should soon receive information about health care benefits through the mail. A number of members indicated that they had indeed received the benefits booklet. Charest commented that the University’s Benefits Director has not yet received the booklet, and she herself received her booklet two days previous. In any case, Employees will have a little more time to make their decisions than in past years. University Benefits staff are working with the University Gazette to include a summary of benefits into the Gazette’s next issue. A summary was not published in the last issue of the Gazette as the relevant information was not yet available.

Charest reported that the North Carolina Flex Plan has put its dental plan out for bid, and emphasized that the University has not put its own dental plan out for bid. Charest was told that North Carolina Flex will have two different carriers for dental insurance in the coming year: American will retain the HMO part of the dental plan, and Blue Cross/Blue Shield will receive the indemnity portion (the traditional plan). This shift means that there will be significant cost increases in the indemnity plan which will range around 20%. The University should receive materials on this shift sometime later in August.

Charest reported that there are currently 442 job openings at the University, a record number of vacancies. Employees are well aware of this fact as they are experiencing the impact of these vacancies in their work areas. Unemployment in the Research Triangle Park area has fallen below 1%; as a result, there is little reason to expect a rapid improvement in the wait to fill vacancies.

Charest stressed that departments experiencing turnover should plan for delays in filling vacant positions. Employment staff are trying diligently to find replacements, but departments will experience difficulty finding and keeping new candidates. Human Resources is engaged in a number of strategies to attract applicants in information technology, an area where the University is experiencing serious problems finding help. Charest asked that Employees try to understand these difficulties. While the general health of the local economy is encouraging, the downside to this prosperity is the long time necessary to attract and keep good candidates.

Lastly, regarding the Career Development Counselor/Careers Training Program position (a split position), a number of good candidates have been scheduled to interview that week. Human Resources hoped to make an appointment soon.

Charest offered to take questions from the Forum. Libby Evans recalled that for true SPA positions, the University could or would not pay for recruiting expenses such as travel. She asked if there was a chance of this policy changing to allow the University to attract candidates from outside the Triangle. Charest was uncertain, but thought that State regulations prohibit use of funds to recruit SPA positions. Eddie Capel said this was correct.

The Chair asked if a unit had available monies in its existing State budget, could these funds be used for recruiting expenses? Charest replied that only non-State funds could be used for this purpose. Capel agreed this was the case.

Cheryl Stout asked if there was a chance that State Employees’ salary increases would be made retroactive to July 1. Charest had no information on this subject, but inferred that the longer the Legislature stays in session, the more chance raises will not be made retroactive. Stout asked if there were any formula to govern these raises. Charest said there was no such formula, and noted that if a raise is given for only 9-10 months of a fiscal year, it has the short-term advantage of costing the State less. As negotiations enter their final stages, the idea of giving up 2-3 months of retroactive salary to accrue future salary and retirement gains for State Employees becomes attractive to legislators seeking to balance the annual budget. No set formula governs the budget negotiations.

Capel noted that private-sector businesses often offers recruitment bounties to workers recruiting appropriate candidates for vacant positions. He asked if there were any possibility that institutions in the more economically robust areas of the State might have an opportunity to offer these bonuses. Charest said this great idea is prohibited by the State.

Linda Drake asked what percentage of the University work force the figure of 442 job openings represents. Charest estimated that around 7.5% of total University positions are unfilled. The Chair added that he had heard very good comments about the Information Technology Job Fair held last week. Charest said that Human Resources was also very pleased with the Fair which followed a State event in which the University also participated. Two hundred and seventy-some applicants attended the Chapel Hill affair. Charest thanked campus departments who donated resources and utilized the Fair to meet with prospective candidates.

The Chair thanked Charest for her report.

 

Approval of the Minutes

The Chair called for a motion to approve the minutes of the July 2, 1997 meeting. Janet Tysinger made this motion, with Tommy Brickhouse seconding. Brickhouse asked if the committee minutes included in the monthly agenda packets were also subject to this vote. Members responded that committee minutes are approved separately by the committees themselves. There was no further discussion, and the minutes were approved without opposition.

 

Unfinished Business

The Chair recalled that the Forum had discussed proposed Guidelines revisions on first reading at the July meeting. Members had recommended some changes to the revisions which were incorporated into the most recent draft. He stressed that nothing added to the new draft of the revisions was not discussed on first reading.

The Chair asked the Forum’s guidance on how to proceed with approving the revisions. Should the Forum vote on the revisions one by one, or take the whole as a package? Members indicated they were comfortable with the revisions as written, and were willing to consider the entire package.

Stephanie Stadler moved that the proposed Guidelines revisions be accepted by the Forum on second reading. Tommy Nixon seconded this motion. There was no discussion on this motion, and it was approved unanimously.

The Chair thanked the Forum for its hard work on this project and thought the Forum had produced important and necessary changes in the Guidelines.

 

New Business

The Chair noted that Delegates have proposed that the Forum hear a special presentation on the management of Tar Heel Temporaries. The Forum agreed by acclamation to deal with this proposal on second reading in September.

The Chair brought forward a similar proposal for the Forum to hear a presentation on the incoming Person ID system. He noted that the introduction of this system will eliminate the use of social security numbers as a means to identify students, staff and faculty in all but a few cases. While seemingly a straightforward change, the shift will present challenges to data processing workers, units and other individuals. Libby Evans added that this change is a very positive one that will maintain the privacy rights of everyone in the University community.

Bob Culp has been appointed to head the Person ID Campus Coordinating Committee; the Chair and the Vice-Chair of the Forum are members of this committee, among others. The Chair suggested that the Forum schedule a presentation to better understand how the shift to the new system will affect the work of campus units.

Nancy Tannenbaum noted that her UNC One Card number is different than her social security number, and asked if the One Card number would be used for the same purposes as the Person ID number. The Chair responded that the Person ID number will not be the same as the UNC One Card number. Janet Tysinger added that all UNC One Cards will be reissued with different numbers as part of the changeover.

Tannenbaum asked if the changeover will preserve the use of social security numbers for certain purposes. Laurie Charest said that social security numbers are required to be used in processing student information related to University payrolls. However, the number will no longer be used as a method to track students by units like the Registrar’s Office, for example. The Chair added that similar shifts away from social security numbers have been accomplished on other campuses.

Peter Schledorn asked the timetable for this changeover. The Chair stated that the shift was scheduled to be completed by March 1998. Cheryl Stout asked what was the reason for the rapid timetable for implementation. Tysinger thought that the shift was designed to coincide with the installation of the new Human Resources Information System.

Given the approaching deadline, Schledorn moved that the Forum waive a second reading on this proposal and approve hearing a special presentation on the system as soon as possible. He did not want to wait to hear about the details of implementation until the next year. Libby Evans seconded this motion which was subsequently approved by acclamation.

Cheryl Stout asked if there was a plan in place to convert University payrolls to the new system. She recalled that a shift from social security numbers to UNC One Card numbers had been attempted in the past and had not been successful. The Chair advised that Stout contact Culp directly for more details on this part of the project. He would work to schedule Culp as soon as possible to speak on the new system.

 

Eddie Capel noted that the University had recently appointed Marian Moore as its new Chief Information Officer. He introduced a motion, for first reading, that the Forum invite Moore to make a special presentation to the Forum at her earliest convenience. Nancy Tannenbaum seconded this motion, and the Forum agreed by acclamation that the item would be placed on the September agenda for second reading.

 

Chair’s Report

The Chair reported that representatives of six institutions attended the August 1 UNC System Staff Assembly meeting in Boone. The group has held meetings with representatives of ten of the sixteen campuses in the UNC System, and will work to secure commitments from these other six before the group’s November 7 meeting.

The Assembly has been working concurrently to provide information and guidance to those campuses looking to begin their own staff assemblies and to construct the umbrella group’s charter and by-laws. The Chair noted that campuses in their initial stages of development are often not able to afford travel across the state for Assembly meetings. He was happy, nonetheless, with the group’s progress this year.

Eddie Capel asked if the group had approached General Administration to secure funds for the System-wide Assembly. The Chair replied that the group had discussed this point, but had not quite known how to go about this process. One obstacle was that the Assembly had heard from only ten of the sixteen campuses, and only around seven campuses have active bodies representing their employees. Thus, the Assembly may have difficulty in obtaining recognition as the representative body for all UNC workers. In addition, financial and staffing obstacles stand in the way of other campuses’ involvement.

Barbara Calderwood, a representative of the Appalachian State University Staff Council, has said she would contact representatives of General Administration to explore the possibility of funding. Capel thought that the group might have more success taking a direct approach with General Administration in soliciting funding than relying on tight campus resources.

 

The Chair recalled that the Forum had discussed Transfer Opportunity Program (TOP) issues at previous Forum and Executive Committee meetings. He had spoken with members and Laurie Charest on this subject. Charest had reminded the Chair that there had been a study commissioned on the TOP program around three and a half years ago. He asked that interested parties examine this report for further information.

 

The Chair asked if Tommy Brickhouse, Chair of the Compensation and Benefits Committee, had any comments regarding the publicity of in-range salary adjustment issues. Brickhouse had received a revised fact sheet from Jerry Howerton of Human Resources that addressed the three questions members had raised about this data: 1) a list of departments that have granted in-range increases; 2) the number of Employees who have received these increases by department; and 3) the number of SPA positions (including vacancies) in each department. Brickhouse noted that one department has submitted an in-range plan but has yet to provide an adjustment, although many departments have submitted plans simultaneously with providing adjustments. The fact sheet also should list departments that have no plans for granting in-range salary adjustments for their Employees.

This data will be incorporated into the document. In addition, Brickhouse recalled Reba Sullivan’s question concerning the percentage of the increase of State funds provided by receipt-supported State accounts. Lucille Brooks noted that some State funds are indeed receipt-supported. When the assertion is made that in-range salary adjustments come from State funds, she wondered if receipt-supported agencies are included within the category of departments deemed “supported by State funds” in the fact sheet’s analysis.

Laurie Charest thought that Brooks’ question was related to data raised earlier concerning the percentage of State funds a department receives. She emphasized that the funds mentioned are State-appropriated funds, and do not include receipt-supported funds. Brickhouse was worried that the analysis was growing too detailed. Libby Evans proposed that the Forum go with the data already available, an approach that Brickhouse favored.

 

The Chair referred members to the June 11 Community Meeting minutes. The Forum Office will follow up on Employees questions soon.

Libby Evans presented her idea that members create an annual Forum calendar. She and others thought that there should be more concrete documentation of Forum activities that occur on a annual basis. The Chair noted that some Forum committees are very driven by calendar-based activities while others respond primarily to need. In addition, the Forum Office has a number of tasks that must be accomplished on deadline.

The Nominating and the Orientation Committees have already begun developing calendars depicting a schedule of activities and accompanying tasks necessary for success. The Chair encouraged other Forum committees to develop similar calendars at the same time they create their annual reports. These two documents will serve as an operational guide to incoming committee chairs. The Chair thought Evans’ idea was a very good one, and said that the Forum Office would take responsibility for collating information into a master calendar.

The Chair referred members to their packets for copies of the Forum’s committee and divisional rosters.

 

The Chair recalled Floyd’s praise of the University Blood Drive and stated that the drive had been a tremendous success. Employees played an overwhelming part in performing volunteer work and providing donations. The Chair said that the flow of donors through the donation process went very smoothly, and the drive benefited from many good volunteers. The only thing that went wrong was that the air temperature in the Dean Dome had become very cold with unexpectedly mild weather, making donating somewhat difficulty for some. He thanked all who donated or volunteered, and encouraged others to consider giving their time in a similar fashion next year.

Nancy Tannenbaum asked if the drive met its goal for the year. The Chair reported that the drive attracted 1,034 donors and collected 934 units of blood. There were 196 first-time donors, around 10% more first-time donors than in 1996. Libby Evans said that the drive was the second largest one-day drive in the country, behind only that run by the San Diego Chargers NFL football team.

The Chair thanked Human Resources and Programs Manager Patti Smith for their great efforts to make the drive a success.

 

Committee Reports

Libby Evans, Chair of the Nominating Committee, reported that nomination forms for the 1997 elections have been mailed to campus Employees. She encouraged members to seek out good candidates for election to the Forum, and to submit these names to her or the Forum Office by August 8. The Nominating Committee and its ad hoc members will verify every nominee’s willingness to run. She particularly encouraged Employees to find representatives from Divisions 2 and 3, as these have historically had fewer nominees than other divisions. The Forum Office has received a great number of nominations through the mail and via the Forum web page.

Evans reported that given shifts in the population of Employees within various employment divisions, Division 1 has gained a seat and Division 2 has lost a seat on the Forum. She explained that the number of each division’s representatives depends on the number of Employees in that division as a percentage of the total number of University SPA and EPA non-faculty Employees. Based on changes in these percentages, Division 1 gains a delegate and Division 2 loses a delegate. These percentages are captured on the Forum nomination form, and are available from the Forum Office.

Peter Schledorn asked if these percentages were based on each division’s number of Employees or number of positions. Evans replied that the request to Administrative Information Services had specified the number of Employees in each Division. She would advise future Nominating Committee chairs to request that AIS specify one or the other in its report. Recalling Laurie Charest’s statement that there are currently over 400 vacant positions at the University, Schledorn thought that determining representation by the number of approved positions in each division would make the overall percentages less subject to labor market fluctuations or hiring difficulties.

Laurie Charest was uncertain how to address Schledorn’s concern but added that there are a number of vacant positions on the books that are still inactive. She thought that any change in representation would need to be based on active positions because some areas have positions which are inactive but yet to be abolished. Charest said that many inactive positions have no chance of being revived.

Evans thought that if the intention of the Forum is to represent the Employees of the University, “number of Employees” would be a better measure of representation than “number of active positions.” Cheryl Stout thought that using the number of vacant, active positions as a measure of representation would present a logistical nightmare, and urged the Forum to continue using number of Employees to determine representation. Evans thought Stout had made a very strong point.

Jeffery Beam asked how many Delegates would be elected in 1997. Evans said that 22 delegate positions will be contested in the coming campaign.

Norm Loewenthal suggested that Evans review the script that Nominating Committee members will use in verifying candidates’ intentions to run for the Forum. Evans said that members will remind nominees that Forum service is counted as worktime, but will emphasize that nominees should check with their supervisor before agreeing to run. The script will stress the Forum’s stringent attendance policy. The script also will request contact information for nominees’ supervisors, as this information is needed to contact supervisors about membership and promotion concerns.

Loewenthal asked what could be done at this stage in the election process to aid those Employees interested in running but hesitant to approach their supervisors—how might the Forum support their interest and respond to questions supervisors might have? Evans suggested adding a statement to the Nominating Committee’s general script a request that nominees provide information on the Forum to their supervisors, so that supervisors can contact the Forum if they have questions. Eventually, she hoped all campus supervisors would be aware of the contributions and responsibilities of Forum service.

Peter Schledorn suggested that the Forum request that Chancellor Hooker address a letter encouraging supervisors to make time for Employees to run and work on the Forum. In his capacity as a supervisor, Schledorn had not received a statement from the University supporting service on the Forum. Evans praised this suggestion. She recalled that Chancellors Hardin and Hooker have been asked to provide statements of support for the Forum to be used in the solicitations for candidates which are sent to all Employees. However, there has not been a general letter of support sent to supervisors.

Laurie Charest said that there was not currently a database of supervisors available, but one might be available from the new Human Resources Information System when it is implemented. She suggested that a letter be sent from the Chancellor to the deans, directors and department heads list; while this list does not go to every supervisor, it might be a good place to start. Eddie Capel suggested including a statement from the Chancellor as a part of the Forum’s Gazette insert. Evans thanked Capel for his idea and the Forum for its good questions.

The Chair encouraged first-year Delegates to consider running for officers’ positions in 1998.

 

Jeffery Beam, Co-Chair of the Orientation Committee, referred members to the group’s minutes in the monthly agenda packet. The group had been very busy, discussing the buddy system and the new delegate Orientation. Orientation for incoming members will take place Friday, October 24 in Student Union 205-206, as ongoing renovations have precluded the use of the Toy Lounge in Dey Hall.

The committee has decided that the Five Year Reunion and Reception should take place from 8:30-9:30 a.m. before the November 5 Forum meeting. Beam had given poetry readings to 150-200 children in the Wilson Library lobby, and so anticipated that the lobby would be able to host the reunion. The committee will now work on finding a caterer and determining a list of past members and dignitaries to be invited.

The group also discussed the January Retreat and the annual calendar idea, and had established tentative schedules for planning the retreat and orientation sessions. Beam asked members to see him if they had ideas for January Retreat speakers.

 

Peter Schledorn, Chair of the Personnel Policies Committee, said the group had discussed the work schedule issue internally within its group, and hoped to bring its ideas to representatives of Human Resources at some point. Schledorn had been unable to arrange a meeting with the Employees from UNC Physicians & Associates to discuss their reclassification issues. The committee has one or two other issues to discuss and has done preliminary research on these as well, and hoped to have more to report in the next month.

 

Tommy Brickhouse, Chair of the Compensation and Benefits Committee, had a comment regarding that group’s minutes. He noted comments that the faculty compensation need was much greater at UNC-Chapel Hill than it was at other System institutions—the main reasons cited being a desire for higher quality faculty and the cost of living in Chapel Hill. Brickhouse had asked, in a letter to Kathy Dutton and Kitty McCollum, why standards for faculty raises would not also not be in effect for staff. For example, Brickhouse thought that a clerk/typist in pay grade 59 working at UNC-Chapel Hill has to be more highly educated and meet greater expectations than counterparts at other System institutions. These Employees incur the same cost of living difficulties that University faculty do; why cannot the same standards for soliciting raises apply equally to UNC-Chapel Hill faculty and staff?

Brickhouse had yet to receive a response to his letter but would endeavor to set up a meeting with Dutton and McCollum when possible. Libby Evans asked if it was possible for the University to determine the number of vacant positions on other system campuses. She presumed that the higher cost of living in Chapel Hill was a strong argument for increasing staff salaries, but added that the University’s relative inability to fill vacant positions also presents a rationale for increased staff compensation at UNC-Chapel Hill.

The Chair rephrased the question: has the State created a regional difference in compensation based on global market positions in the University System. Laurie Charest replied that the University had advocated such a supplement to the Office of State Personnel and the Legislature but had not succeeded. The Office of State Personnel has informed the University that their data does not support the provision of regional, or geographic, salary supplements.

Addressing hiring difficulties and their relation to Employee compensation, Charest thought a more accurate comparison would be based on local turnover data. This information is available from the Office of State Personnel on a campus by campus basis. However, Charest observed that turnover at UNC-CH has not recently matched that on other System campuses, although this fact may change with the local fall in the unemployment rate.

Evans thought that any argument for higher salaries relying on turnover or geographic data should be certain that the relevant data can be quantified and indeed support staff salary increases. Charest thought that the problem could be broken into two parts. She anticipated that Brickhouse’s statement that responsibilities for the same position are greater in one location are greater than another would receive an answer from the Office of State Personnel that increased duties should be recognized by reclassification into higher salary grades. Charest advised that the problems of reclassification and recruitment be considered separately from geographic pay considerations.

 

Anne Montgomery, Co-Chair of the Public Affairs Committee, had nothing to report.

Neither Laura Grady or Nancy Klatt, Co-Chairs of the Recognition and Awards Committee, were present to report but minutes of that group’s most recent meeting were included in the monthly agenda packet.

 

Tommy Nixon, Co-Chair of the University Committee Assignments Committee, said that group had not met that month awaiting clarification from Athletic Director Richard Baddour on Employee representation on the Athletic Council. Baddour indicated that he was willing to have an Employee who is not a Forum member serve on the council. The committee would soon provide Baddour with 3-4 nominees for this position.

Anne Montgomery had spoken with Brenda Kirby concerning the representative to the Buildings & Grounds Committee. This representative will not need to be a Forum member. Nixon asked that committee members meet briefly after the meeting to discuss these two issues.

Nixon had received a letter from Patti Smith requesting nominees to serve on the selection committee for the new Excellence in Management Award. This group will annually select two University managers for this award. It will meet once every year, and any Employee may serve. He hoped that listeners would consider serving or nominating co-workers.

 

Norm Loewenthal, Chair of the Career Development Committee, said the group had included its minutes in the monthly agenda packet. The committee had held an important discussion on career growth with Laurie Charest and Nora Robbins, and the minutes preserved these ideas for discussion.

Loewenthal noted that the search to fill the Career Counselor position was underway. Milton Anthony, the Forum’s representative on the search committee for that position, said the group had been worked with Ken Manwaring in winnowing down candidates to the four who would be interviewed in the next week. Loewenthal recalled that the position would be funded for only one year, as far as he was aware. He added that the position’s work seemed to be of interest to Vice Chancellor of Women’s Issues Marsha Collins, and Loewenthal had conferred with Collins to discuss joint funding of the position.

Regarding academic credit issues, Provost Dick Richardson and Chair of the Faculty Pete Andrews will meet with the committee in September. Andrews will appoint a liaison from the Faculty Council to the Career Development Committee and the New Careers Training Board. The committee will spend its August meeting preparing for September.

The committee followed up on Executive Vice Chancellor Elson Floyd’s request that it work with Human Resources to explore the concept of career growth options with the possibility of creating a task force to explore the issue further. Part of the discussion with Charest and Robbins touched on the advisability of creating a new task force. Many good ideas arose in this discussion and the group plans to continue talks with Human Resources.

The discussion also outlined specific obstacles associated with a career growth ladder for Employees. Loewenthal asked if Charest would reiterate her views. Charest stated that the University is different from the corporate world that can pre-select for open positions, thus creating a clear progression for the promotion of certain workers. As a State agency, the University must hold open all vacant positions for competition, and thus cannot know who will be selected for a position in advance. There are also other issues and legal constraints that undermine possibilities for a career growth ladder.

Loewenthal noted that these issues are outlined in the committee’s minutes. However, ways also exist to provide career growth options for University Employees: increased compensation, training opportunities, incentives for managers to hire from within, better use of the TOP system, and building career planning into the performance review process. He thought the meeting had been a good opportunity to exchange ideas, but the committee concluded it was premature for it to make recommendations on career growth at this point. The Career Development Committee will meet again on August 21.

Loewenthal reported for George Sharp on the progress of the New Careers Training Board. That group had been unable to form a quorum in July, and could not evaluate financial requests. Nonetheless, the group engaged in a good discussion of organizational issues. The board will meet August 12 to examine these postponed funding requests.

The Chair thanked Loewenthal for his report. He would enter discussions with Loewenthal and Charest to secure permanent funding for the Career Counselor position. Eddie Capel recalled that in 1996, the Career Development Committee felt it could oblige the Forum only to fund a pilot program for the position, intending for the Forum to decide whether to recommit funds on an annual basis. The Chair imagined that this impermanence may discourage candidates from applying for the Career Counselor position. Charest recalled for listeners that the Staff Development Fund is based on the earnings from an endowment of funds has been already raised and will vary in yield from year to year.

 

Janet Tysinger, Chair of the Employee Presentations Committee, reported the group was planning the Forum’s the Fall Community Meeting. She asked members to present their ideas for the meeting or its format.

Tysinger recalled that the Spring Meeting had combined presentations from University officials and open microphone questions. Libby Evans proposed that the committee that examine Employee concerns raised at the Employee Appreciation Fair to find a topic that has not recently addressed. The committee could choose this topic, then publicize the event as held “in response to Employee concerns expressed at the Employee Appreciation Fair.” Others thought this was a very good idea.

Eddie Capel suggested that the Forum request either the Chancellor or Laurie Charest present information on how the recent legislative session affected the University and its Employees, possibly providing documentation on the impact of these events.

Tysinger asked the group’s feelings on holding an open mike session. Peter Schledorn thought it important to have an open mike component to the meeting, although the entire meeting did not need to hold to this format. Stephanie Stadler thought that some Employees left last year’s open mike session rather unfulfilled, because questions were not addressed on the spot. She thought it would be more useful for Employees to hear issues and plans from administrators and then have a chance to respond and ask questions. Tysinger felt this exchange was a strength of the Spring 1997 Meeting.

 

 

The Chair reported that the University Gazette Insert Task Force had begun to make story assignments. He encouraged everyone requested to contribute to do their best. The Forum will rely on editorial and graphic design assistance from Gazette staff. The Chair also proposed that every Forum committee provide a small blurb on how their work contributes to the work of the Forum. He asked contributors to be ready to meet a deadline of August 25 for publication in the Gazette’s September 18 issue.

Libby Evans asked that Employees with good ideas about “unknown” University resources to contact her for inclusion in her article.

 

 

Libby Evans, convenor of the School Volunteerism Task Force, reported the group had not made as much progress as it would have liked over the summer, but was not giving up. Evans would soon meet with Pam Bailey and Becky Irwin of Chapel Hill/Carrboro Schools concerning the “Walk for Education” to take place on a Saturday in September. While Employees will not be able to use child involvement leave for this project, she thought it was still worthwhile. The group will need adult volunteers and will provide more information as it becomes available

 

Forum liaisons to Faculty Council Committees had nothing to report.

 

Janet Tysinger of the Transportation and Parking Advisory Committee had nothing to report. Connie McPherson announced the names of the representatives on the long-range parking and transportation task force;

 

* Transportation and Parking Advisory Committee Members: Vince Kopp, Steve Matson, Janet Tysinger, Marshall Wade (resigned), Jean Cox, Willie Scroggs, Jerry Fife, Ned Brooks, Frank Brown, Tom Smith, Eric Munson, and Tom Kmetz

 

* Employee Forum representatives: Gwen Burston, Libby Evans, Dianne Hill, Herman Huang and Eric Plow

 

* Faculty Council representatives: Mary Lynn, Eileen McGrath, George Fishman, Rachel Willis, Hank Frierson, and Terrance McIntosh

 

* Student Government representatives: Rebecca Hockfield, Scott Hammack, Emily Williamson, Arant Shah, Bryan Wimbush, Katherine Kraft, and Mo Nathan

 

* Jonathan Howes, director of University Outreach, and Richard Stevens, chair of the Board of Trustees, also will serve on the task force.

 

The task force should begin its meetings in August.

 

Laurie Charest reported on the activities of the University Outsourcing Team in the absence of Bennie Griffin and Ann Hamner. The team had met August 4 and was due to submit its semi-annual report on the outsourcing study in July. Most of this report was drawn from the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document that was prepared for the Forum’s Spring Community Meeting.

This year, the team is scheduled to study Grounds Maintenance and Heating, Ventilation & Air Conditioning (HVAC). The team has been engaged in a process to find consultant to determine competitiveness of these units; however, the procurement process for finding this consultant is not complete, although the teams have made a recommendation on the consultant they would like to hire. Paperwork for this recommendation has been submitted to State Purchases & Contracts and is awaiting awaiting approval. This delay has put the team some 6-9 months behind its September deadline for this part of the study.

An updated and more comprehensive list of the services the University currently outsources has been sent to General Administration. Charest emphasized that more services are not being outsourced; rather, the University has capturing more detailed information about those activities it already outsources.

Finally, the team discussed how to respond to a General Administration requirement that the University seriously consider outsourcing all maintenance functions in all newly constructed buildings. To date, this requirement has not affected the University because all capital projects have been additions to existing buildings, and so have been incorporated into existing maintenance responsibilities. However, now new University buildings are coming on-line.

The team decided to inform General Administration that until a decision is made concerning outsourcing of maintenance functions, new buildings will be staffed with temporary or time-limited employees. Bruce Runberg has been engaged to draft a formal response to this effect to General Administration. The Chair asked which buildings could be affected by this new requirement. Charest mentioned the McCall Building and the Carolina Living & Learning Center as buildings that will be immediately affected.

 

 

Announcements/Questions

Libby Evans asked if the Forum would host a bag lunch after the meeting. The Chair had planned to have the lunch in either September or October, and thus had not scheduled the lunch. Nonetheless, he thanked Evans for baking brownies for attendees.

 

In the absence of further discussion, the Chair called for a motion to adjourn. Cheryl Stout so moved, seconded by Joyce Dalgleish. There was no discussion, and the meeting adjourned at 11:08 a.m.

 

 

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

 

Matt Banks, Recording Secretary

 

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