Agenda — July 3, 1996

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

 

I. Call to Order

 

II. Welcome Guests

 

III. Opening Remarks

* Executive Vice Chancellor Elson Floyd

 

IV. Employee Presentations—Kay Spivey

 

V. Approval of Minutes of the June 5, 1996 meeting

 

VI. Chair’s Report (Executive Committee): Ann Hamner

* Creation of University Budget Committee

* University Council Report

* Request to Bruce Runberg, Outsourcing Coordinator, for Employee Representation on Privatization Study Commissions

* Executive Committee Meeting with N.C. State Staff Senate Executive Committee July 9

* Possible Video Conference with Appalachian State University

* Orientation Committee Requested to Handle Briefing of Newly Promoted Delagates

* Employee Presentations Committee Requested to Create Orientation Letter for New University Employees

* Welcome to New Delegate Bennie Griffin, New First Alternate James Rishel; Tommy Griffin New Executive Committee Representative from Division 3

* Aaron Nelson, Dick Richardson Confirm Special Presentations; Joe Totten Agrees to Update Forum on Employee Exit Interviews at September Meeting

 

VII. New Business

* $15 Replacement Fee for UNC One Card Too Much? / Process for Dealing with Employee Concerns

* Forum Video Tape for Community Access Channel, Supervisory Resources; Need for Production Task Force

* Adjournment of State Legislature

* Bag Lunch After August Forum Meeting Near Fordham Court Fountain?

* Addition: Discussion of Academic Calendar

VIII. Committee/Task Force Reports

* Nominating—Dianne Crabill

=> Nomination Form On-Line: http://www.unc.edu/staff/forum/nomform.html

* Orientation—Leon Hamlett

* Personnel Policies—Peter Schledorn

* Compensation and Benefits—Frank Alston

* Public Affairs—Helen Iverson

* Recognition and Awards—Nancy Klatt/Pamela Shoaf

* University Committee Assignments—Vicki Lotz/Jennifer Pendergast

=> Responses to University Committee Requests for Information

=> University Committee E-Mail Addresses On-Line: http://www.unc.edu/staff/forum/committees/commlist.html

* Career Development—Sharon Cheek

* Pan-University Task Force—Ned Brooks

=> University Budget Committee

* Faculty Council Liaisons

* Partner Benefits—Peter Schledorn

* Legislative Affairs—Laresia Farrington

* Long-Range Land Use Planning—Margaret Balcom

 

IX. Human Resources Update

* Laurie Charest, Vice Chancellor, Human Resources

 

X. Announcements/Questions

* University Blood Drive—Bob Schreiner/Fiona Bradley

 

XI. Adjournment

MINUTES

July 3, 1996

Delegates Present

Frank Alston

Mary Alston

Ned Brooks

Sharon Cheek

Peggy Cotton

Mona Couts

Dianne Crabill

Laura Grady

Tommy Griffin, Jr.

Tommy Gunter

Ann Hamner

Delores Jarrell

Nancy Klatt

Vicki Lotz

Sue Morand

Tommy Nixon

Jennifer Pendergast

Archie Phillips, Jr.

Lynn Ray

Creola Scurlock

George Sharp

Pamela Shoaf

Kay Spivey

Reba Sullivan

Alice Taylor

Janet Tysinger

Marshall Wade, Jr.

Chien-Hsin Wagner

Beverly Williams

Mary Woodall

Laurie Charest”

Rachel Windham”

” = Ex-Officio

 

Delegates Absent

Eddie Capel

Frank DiMauro

Kathy Dutton

Laresia Farrington

Thomas Goodwin

Bennie Griffin

Leon Hamlett

Helen Iverson

Bobbie Lesane

Ruth Lewter

Norman Loewenthal

Rosa Nolen

Sarah Rimmer

Peter Schledorn

Betty Watkins

 

Alternates Present

Ann Dodd

Thomas Holmes

James Rishel

 

Guests

Fiona Bradley

Elson Floyd

Mike Freeman

Mike Hobbs

Mitch Kokai

Ruby Massey

Bob Schreiner

Patti Smith

 

Call to Order and Welcome to Guests

Chair Ann Hamner called the meeting to order at 9:32 a.m. and reported that the Chancellor was in Greensboro attending the Governor’s “Citizens’ Forum” on the State Budget. She turned the floor over to Executive Vice Chancellor Elson Floyd.

Opening Remarks

Dr. Floyd expressed his pleasure to meet with the Forum and apologized for the Chancellor’s absence. The Governor is holding a series of public forums on the State Budget, and the Chancellor was attending the one that morning in Greensboro. The Greensboro meeting seemed particularly important since the Legislature may return to session July 8. Otherwise, Dr. Floyd said, the Chancellor would have been present with the Forum.

Concerning the legislative session, Dr. Floyd declared the situation was still uncertain, beyond the Governor’s calling the General Assembly back into session July 8. It is anticipated that the Legislature will finish its work for the benefit of University operations and for the recognition of the contributions Employees make to the State, regarding salary increases and adjustments.

With regard to privatization, Dr. Floyd noted that the Legislature and General Administration have asked that the University examine a number of services. Also, General Administration has requested that each University campus designate an Outsourcing Coordinator to look at a series of functions and report back.

Bruce Runberg has been designated the University’s Outsourcing Coordinator, and Dr. Floyd asked Employees to direct any comments regarding privatization to Bruce’s attention. Dr. Floyd noted that the Forum’s Executive Committee has already forwarded its resolution on privatization, but granted that there may be other steps that the Forum may wish to take.

The Administration has been working hard to fill some key vacancies within the University. The Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs search continues; no offer was made to any of the three recent candidates invited to campus. The Administration will invite another group of three candidates to be interviewed by the search committee and other appropriate officials. Contrary to reports in the Daily Tar Heel, the search was not a mysterious one, Dr. Floyd said. The group of candidates invited are among those evaluated previously. He hoped to conclude the search process soon.

It is essential that the University find the best qualified candidate for this important position. Dr. Floyd granted that the search had dragged on, but noted that much of the delay had predated his arrival on campus. He felt that criticism of the process was likely in any event. If an appointment were made this summer, an editorial would bemoan that action taken while the students were away. Conversely, if the appointment were delayed until the fall, criticism of its vacancy would persist. It becomes difficult to find a solution amenable to everyone, though the Administration would continue its work nonetheless.

There continues to be an open search for the Vice Chancellor of Administration position with three individuals interviewed recently. Dr. Floyd thought there was tremendous likelihood that the University will continue to interview additional candidates for this position.

William Graves has been asked to serve as the Interim Chief Information Officer, a position created to head the combination of Administrative Data Processing, Telecommunications and the Office of Information Technology. Also, the Administration will engage in an aggressive search for the permanent Director of that unit. Dr. Floyd was pleased to report that Dr. Fred Brooks, Professor of Computer Science, will chair that search committee. Staff Employees will be included on the Chief Information Officer search committee, Dr. Floyd said.

The Associate Vice Chancellor for Public Relations position is undergoing an open and continuing search. Dr. Floyd hoped that the pool of applicants would be narrowed soon.

Dr. Floyd reported an appointment will be recommended in July to the Board of Trustees for the Dean of the Graduate School. If approved, this recommendation would be forwarded in turn to the Board of Governors.

The Administration also hopes to recommend an appointment to the Board of Trustees for the Dean of the Education School at the July meeting, hoping for confirmation by the Board of Governors in August.

Of particular concern to staff Employees are the proposed changes in the University Calendar. Dr. Floyd noted the General Assembly’s mandate to System campuses to add class days, a mandate that the University takes very seriously. He said that the options available to the University are very limited. Regarding staff Employees, the recommendation from the University Calendar Committee and approved by the Chancellor is one in which classes will be held on two holidays, Good Friday and Labor Day.

Dr. Floyd is interested in the impact on staff if these two days become teaching days. He felt that the University community must hold further discussions on this issue. Dr. Floyd said that he and the Chancellor were very sensitive to the importance of holidays, but stated that the decision made will be a “consultative” one, involving the Forum’s leadership directly.

Generally, the State requires a given number of holidays for Employees, usually twelve but in some cases eleven, depending on when Christmas falls on the calendar. Understanding the angst related to the issue, Dr. Floyd hoped to resolve the situation within the next month, because he did not wish for Employees to be unable to plan their vacation schedules. The Administration will work openly and diligently to resolve the situation within the month, recognizing the needs of Employees.

Since there were no questions from the floor, Dr. Floyd concluded by saying that the Administration greatly appreciates the work of the Forum and the contributions that each Employee makes to the work of the University. He thought the Forum and Employees vitally important to the equation of excellence that makes up the mission and work of the University. Again, he said that it was his absolute delight to speak before the Forum.

The Chair thanked Dr. Floyd for his kind and candid remarks. She noted that though the University Calendar issue was not on the agenda, she would propose a suspension of the rules in order to consider this item in greater detail.

Employee Presentations

Vice-Chair Kay Spivey reported that the Employee Presentations Committee had not been able to meet in June. The Committee will take up several initiatives in July and begin planning for the Fall Community Meeting. She asked the Forum once more for feedback regarding its preference for the fall meeting, stating she had received support from a Forum member and the Forum Assistant in favor of an open mike format via e-mail, in addition to comments made at the June meeting. Unless she received other feedback to the contrary, the Committee would proceed with this format. Kay also asked members to indicate their thoughts about choosing a panel of area legislators, an open mike format, or some combination thereof.


Approval of the Minutes

The Chair called for a motion to approve the minutes of the June 5 meeting. George Sharp made this motion, with Sue Morand seconding. Nancy Klatt noted that Pamela Shoaf should be recorded as present at the June 5 meeting. The Forum agreed to this change and the minutes as amended were approved unanimously.

Chair’s Report

The Chair noted the great volume of material in the meeting’s routing folder, including the Chancellor’s creation of the University Budget Committee. This Committee was created to respond to University-wide financial issues and to establish mechanisms for funding new University-wide initiatives and is made up of the Provost, the Executive Vice Chancellor, and the Vice Chancellor for Administration. Serving in an advisory capacity are the Chairs of the Forum and the Faculty Council along with other Vice Chancellors and Vice Provosts and the President of the Student Government. She reported that the Committee would gear up fairly soon and said that she was happy to have a part in its work before stepping down as Forum Chair.

The University Council met on June 27, with most of the meeting devoted to discussion of student concerns, including the proposed expansion of the Student Union, a report from the University Calendar Committee, and the Chancellor’s policy to shorten fraternity rush. The Council will meet again on August 21. The Chair asked that members relay their concerns for the benefit of this group.

The Chair reported that the Forum sent a request to Bruce Runberg requesting Forum and Employee representation on various privatization committees and study commissions. She reported a positive response from Wayne Jones and would forward request for representation to the Forum’s University Committee Assignments Committee.

The Executive Committee is scheduled to meet with the NC State University Staff Senate Executive Committee on July 9. The agenda will include salary increases, privatization, and cooperation with North Carolina Central University. Also, since the groups plan to discuss domestic partner benefits, the Chair invited Peter Schledorn to attend the meeting in his capacity as liaison to the University’s relevant Faculty Council Committee. The Chair will report on the meeting next month and praised NC State’s Staff Senate as an active and stimulating group.

The Forum Office has explored the possibilities of a teleconference with members of Appalachian State University’s Staff Council. That group contacted the Forum last year about opportunities for cooperation. The Chair has e-mailed the contact person at Appalachian State and has yet to receive a response.

The Chair noted an Executive Committee memo to the Orientation Committee requesting that the latter brief newly promoted Delagates on Forum procedures and Committee responsibilities. It was felt that the Orientation Committee would be the best group to advise new members, since the group performs the same function for newly elected members each October.

The Executive Committee asked the Employee Presentations Committee to create a Forum letter of welcome and introduction to Employees newly hired by the University. This letter will be included with each new hire’s Orientation packet.

The Chair welcomed (in his absence) Bennie Griffin, a newly promoted Delegate from Division 3, and James Rishel, Division 3’s new First Alternate. Tommy Griffin is the new representative from Division 3 to the Executive Committee.

Aaron Nelson confirmed that he will give a special presentation to the Forum in September, and Provost Dick Richardson will make a similar presentation in October. Joe Totten will update the Forum on Employee exit interviews at the Forum’s September meeting (Ed. Note: this has since been moved to August).

New Business

The Chair noted correspondence included in the agenda packet regarding one Employee’s concern about the $15 Replacement Fee for a UNC One Card. This issue arose after the Employee Appreciation Fair, when the Employee needed her (lost) Card for admission. In this exchange, the Forum Office pursued the item through channels, in a process with which she and the Executive Committee were generally satisfied.

The Employee’s final communication indicated that she wished for this issue to be discussed at a Forum meeting. The Employee was invited to the meeting, but was unable to attend. However, Mike Freeman, from the One Card Office in Auxiliary Services, was present to address the Forum’s concerns about the replacement fee. Based on the enclosed correspondence, the Chair asked the Forum’s opinion of the One Card replacement fee and the process by which the Forum handled the concern.

Dianne Crabill asked if the Quality Improvement Team had recommended any changes to the replacement fees. Mike Freeman replied that the $15 replacement fee was charged to all Card users. The fee represents the labor and material cost of replacement, and was intended to serve as a deterrent to those who do not take care of their Card.

The UNC One Card is used in three basic ways: as a debit card, mainly by students; as static (picture) identification; and as a form of on-line verification; e.g., when entering the Student Recreation Center or checking out books from the library. In case of a lost Card, the current system can stop unauthorized debit card use, but cannot stop unauthorized individuals from checking out books. Mike reported that the University has suffered the loss of books when the system has not prevented illicit use of a stolen Card. The replacement fee reflects some of this lost value.

There is also a limit on how many Cards the One Card Office can replace. A Card carries nine digits, and the magnetic strip on the back has an additional four digits which are hidden from view. One of these digits is a “lost card” number which can accommodate nine replacements (the numerals `1′ through `9′). Mike noted that there have been individuals who have lost their Card four and five times; should they lose their Card more than nine times, the Office would need to redo the entire labor cycle to replace the Card. This eventuality has not occurred yet.

The UNC One Card Office and the Quality Improvement Team are looking for ways to reduce costs, but Mike was not prepared to say that the $15 replacement fee would be eliminated entirely. It appears there is a need for a some kind of deterrent.

Janet Tysinger asked if there were any statistics on the numbers of Cards lost by staff versus students. Mike guessed that no more than 20-50 Cards were lost by staff in a year, with the number of Cards lost by students “much higher.”

Janet asked if it would be appropriate to consider a “one strike and you’re out” policy in which an individual could replace their Card once free of charge, and then have to pay the replacement fee. Mike replied that Business and Finance had discussed a similar proposal in previous years, but that some gray areas regarding this proposal were unresolved.

Rachel Windham asked what the current replacement cost is for a parking sticker, proposing that Employees may value a parking sticker more than a One Card. The replacement fee for a parking sticker was thought to be twenty-five dollars. Mike thought that if an individual signs an affidavit saying that the sticker was stolen, Transportation and Parking will grant “one strike”—a free replacement. He thought a better comparison would be with one’s drivers’ license.

Mona Couts felt that the UNC One Card Office provides a service to an individual who loses their Card, by invalidating the Card and preventing illegal use by others. Given the Quality Improvement Team’s investigation of the issue, Mona still thought that the Card was an important piece of identification and that there should be a replacement fee.

Sue Morand asked if there was a grace period for someone who has not been careless but has had their Card stolen. This is a situation over which someone does not have much control. Mike replied that if the individual can produce a police report saying that the Card was stolen, the Office charges no fee for replacement.

George Sharp asked what was the replacement fee for a North Carolina drivers’ license. This fee was thought to be $10. (Ed. Note: there is also a charge to obtain a North Carolina drivers’ license.)

The Chair asked if the assembly had any suggestions on the process by which the Forum Office handled this Employee’s concern. She noted that the Forum Office tries to refer Employees to the relevant office to handle their concern, offering to perform this function when necessary and to provide a response. If this response does not meet the Employee’s satisfaction, the Forum Office invites the Employee to give the Forum an Employee Presentation.

George Sharp was struck by how personalized the Chair’s response was to the Employee’s concerns. He surmised that he would think well of the way the Chair responded and followed up on the Employee’s questions. He was impressed with the efforts of the Chair. The Chair thanked George and noted that she and the Forum Office attempt to react similarly whenever it receives a question from Employees or the general public. Usually, however, Employees are satisfied upon receiving initial information from departments.

Sue Morand felt that the Chair had handled the matter well in giving the Employee a chance to present her views to the Forum. She was pleased that the responsibility for the issue was put on the original complainant, thus giving that person a choice on the course they wished to pursue.

Janet Tysinger asked how the Forum decides if a particular concern merits more discussion. She asked if the issue should be sent to Committee, such as in the case of the adverse weather controversy. The Chair felt Janet’s was a good question, but that adverse weather concerns were expressed by more than one Employee. She offered that if any Delegate felt that the issue should be referred to Committee the Forum certainly could do that .

Marshall Wade wondered if the replacement fee were discussed at the Orientation for students and new Employees. Mike Freeman answered that he was not certain, but that he would check to be sure that these fees were discussed. Laurie Charest reported that the replacement fee is discussed at new Employee Orientation. Mike ventured that it would be simple to provide a brochure describing the Card, its uses and replacement fees. Ken Litowsky thought a bullet in the brochure discussing the replacement fee could be most effective.

George Sharp asked that record of the Forum’s discussion on the UNC One Card replacement fee would be transmitted to the original Employee. The Chair said that it would.

George then said that he understood that a replacement fee is intended to insure that an Employee does not treat their Card in a cavalier fashion. Yet, in comparison with the $10 fee required to replace a State drivers’ license, a $15 charge seemed excessive. He asked how the One Card Office settled on the sum of $15.

Mike Freeman stated that the fee was in place when he came to the One-Card office and noted that the Office and Team had contacted other colleges and universities to compare replacement fees. They found that most institutions charged $10 to replace identification cards but one institution charged $25 for replacement, and another increased the replacement fee in increments of $5 every time an individual’s card was replaced. In comparison, UNC-CH edges toward the high end of the pack in terms of fees charged. Mike did not see a problem with lowering the fee to $10, but noted there may be considerations of which he was unaware.

Dianne Crabill confirmed that Employees do not pay to receive their UNC One Card. Mike Freeman said this was so, while noting that the Card Office upgraded its system a few years ago and that the replacement fee helped fund this upgrade.

Sue Morand asked whether it indeed cost $15 to replace a UNC One Card and if it did not, where did the excess revenue go. Mike replied that the Card did not cost $15 to replace, and that the excess revenue went into a revenue account. The raw material of replacing a lost Card costs around $2 and labor costs around $1 per card. Mike Freeman did not know the administrative expense of replacing a card, but said that the new UNC One Card system that was put into place with the cooperation of Human Resources cost around $90,000. Consequently, the per unit replacement costs are probably higher than they will be later, after the system is fully amortized.

Mike noted that Employees often use the Card for the Student Recreation Center and asked that Employees submit any other suggestions for use of the Card to him. The Chair thanked him for his presentation and asked if the Forum wished to take action on the issue beyond forwarding a transcript of the discussion to the Employee complainant.

George Sharp was not certain how urgent this issue was in light of other business on the Forum’s agenda. Yet, he felt that the incremental fee idea made sense, suggesting the Office charge perhaps a $10 initial replacement fee and $5 additional for each time the Card is replaced afterward. He proposed a Committee examine the issue further.

Mona Couts noted that a Quality Improvement Team was investigating the concern already. She suggested a recommendation that a Forum member be included on this Team. Mona worried that the Forum was taking the issue out of context, and that there could be many other issues involved of which the Forum was unaware. George agreed with Mona’s point. A proposal to pursue a Forum member’s appointment on the Quality Improvement Team met with no opposition.

Noting that new Employees are made aware of the replacement cost of the Card in their Orientation, Rachel Windham thought it would be a good idea to notify longer-term Employees of this cost. Peggy Cotton agreed, noting that she had only thought about the issue in light of the Card requirement to enter the Employee Appreciation Fair. The Chair volunteered to ask the University Gazette to carry an article or note on UNC Card replacement.

The Chair asked if there were any other comments on the Forum Office’s method of handling Employee concerns. There was general approval of the conduct of the Office, and the Chair pledged to continue as before.
The Chair noted previous discussion of a Video Production for the Forum which could reach a potential audience of 19,000 cable viewers in Chapel Hill, Orange County, and parts of surrounding counties on the University’s Cable Access Channel, Channel 11.

Andy Braun of Video Production says that his department would not be able to help the Forum with a tape until around September at the earliest, since his department is fully committeed to other projects for the summer. The Forum Office will meet with him as soon as he is available.

If the Forum wishes to pursue this project in earnest, Andy advises that a 7-10 minute production would work best given time and staffing constraints. Preliminary work for the project should determine:

* The tape’s audience

* What the tape should convey

* The chronology (script) of the production

* Who will speak

* What will they say

* How will these images be portrayed on camera

The Forum’s presentation to Supervisory Resources, already formulated, could serve as an initial framework (script) to approach these questions. The video could be presented to Supervisory Resources, Delegate Orientation, and Employee Orientation as well on the cable access channel.

Video Production will allow the Forum to use their camera and editing equipment, once a script is written. Forum Assistant Matt Banks has volunteered to work on the Task Force, if there is interest in this project. The Chair and other Forum Officers would participate as subjects in the work, and she hoped that past and founding members of the Forum will lend their talents also.

The Chair felt this idea would be another exciting way to reach a larger audience. She called for a motion to create a Video Production Task Force and for volunteers to work on the Task Force. George Sharp made this motion with Tommy Nixon seconding. Sue Morand proposed that the Forum Office solicit volunteers via e-mail. The Chair agreed with this idea. There was no further discussion, and the motion was approved. The Chair told members to expect e-mail on the idea within the next week.

George Sharp asked whether work on this project would take place during work hours or afterward. The Chair felt this would be up to the Task Force.

Discussion turned to the recent adjournment of the State Legislature. The Chair noted that the Forum agenda had been created prior to the Governor calling the General Assembly back into session July 8. She noted that over 500 hundred people were in attendance at the Citizens’ Forum in Goldsboro.

In response to a request from Clifton Metcalf, the Chair had asked First Alternate Tommy Brickhouse to represent the Forum’s Public Affairs Committee at the Citizens’ Forum that morning in Greensboro. The Chair was reluctant to send a Delegate to Greensboro, because of meeting responsibilities. She looked forward to hearing a report from Tommy.

Janet Tysinger asked how many letters Tommy carried with him to Greensboro that day but the Chair did not know. She asked if there were anything else that members had to discuss regarding the Legislature.

George Sharp asked if it were still useful to phone and mail one’s legislators as private citizens. The Chair certainly thought so.

Rachel Windham asserted that most news articles she had seen strictly referred to the issue of salary increases for teachers and professors, not State Employees. Now is the time for Employees to speak up because it is clear that the Legislature and the media were not receiving the message about State Employees. She urged members to take the time to write or call their legislators.

Janet Tysinger was frustrated because she had written her legislators, but her representatives agree with her position on the plight of State Employees. Other legislators not from this district do not share her position. Rachel did not believe that individuals should limit their comments strictly to legislators from their home district.

George Sharp asked if there were a source for the home phone numbers of legislators. It was noted that the SEANC organization has these numbers (available from their Legislative Switchboard at 1-800-222-2758 or in the Triangle at 833-6436). George did not want to hassle anyone, but noted that if it were a common practice, he would be willing to try it.

Mary Woodall wondered if the General Assembly were really aware of how little has been done for State Employees over the years. George felt this was a good point. Rachel asked if Tom Hocking’s presentation on SPA salary compression were readily available to individuals writing their legislators. She suggested that this information be made available. (This information can be accessed at http://www.unc.edu/staff/forum/issues/salcomp.html.)

Sue Morand encouraged individuals to be specific when writing their legislators in mentioning State Employees. The Chair agreed, noting that the Forum cared about faculty and students also, but thought we should speak up for ourselves.

The Chair noted that August will be time for the Forum’s quarterly bag lunch. The Executive Committee felt it would be nice to hold the lunch at the Fordham Fountain in front of Bynum Hall. Should it rain, the Forum/Faculty Council Conference Room, 202 Carr Building has been reserved for this purpose. The Forum agreed to meet for a bag lunch at the Fordham Fountain after its August 7 meeting.

The Chair requested a suspension of the rules in order to discuss proposed changes to the University calendar. Sue Morand made this motion, with Tommy Griffin seconding, and the motion was approved unanimously.

David Lanier, as Chair of the University’s Academic Calendar Committee, gave a report to the Forum. He noted that the group had already set its calendar for 1997-98, when at the end of the May it received a letter addressed to the Chancellors of all 16 system campuses. In this letter, President Spangler suggested that campuses examine their calendars to insure that 75 instructional days were included in each semester, or a total of 150 in each year. The 1997-98 calendar had 144 instructional days. The calendar needed six more instructional days, three per semester.

The Committee assembled late in June to examine a number of alternatives for increasing the number of instructional days. What was approved by the Provost and the Chancellor will affect two State holidays. Normally the Calendar Committee does not overlap too much with the Employee calendar, as the academic Calendar Committee tries to work around State holidays. Yet, the plan as approved includes classes on Labor Day (Fall Semester) and on Good Friday (Spring Semester). Historically, classes were held on these days until 1974, David said.

The Provost felt that the University could hold classes on these holidays without staff present, but students on the academic Calendar Committee expressed concern about holding classes without staff support. They wondered what food services or departmental support would be available on those days. The Provost left it up to the Calendar Committee to decide what to do about these two holidays.

In turn, David consulted with Ken Litowsky, and suggested that the group come before the Forum to receive input. David understood that the campus has the ability to reassign holidays to other days of the year, as long as Employees receive a legal allotment of State holidays. For example, Veterans’ Day is a State holiday that is added onto the Christmas holiday. NC State adds Veterans’ Day and Memorial Day onto the Christmas break.

There was a suggestion to move the Labor Day holiday to the Wednesday before Thanksgiving. The 1997 calendar for students will designate this as a non-class day for students, and it could be made an Employee holiday at this time. A holiday could be moved to the Friday of fall break, correspondent with when students leave campus.

In the Spring, the Calendar Committee recommended taking Good Friday and moving it to the Friday before Spring Break. This would give students and Employees a break towards the middle of the semester.

David resisted adding days to the Christmas holiday due to the urgent need to process grades and determine academic eligibility for students in the College of Arts & Sciences. Any days lost then hurt departments needing to file grades and eligibility status.

Tommy Griffin pointed out that there are two days every week when students are not here and the University still runs. He did not see the difference between these days and proposed holidays, suggesting that standby and emergency crews be commissioned in a matter similar to nights and weekends. David replied that on Mondays the campus has 23,000 students, but on nights and weekends the campus population shrinks considerably.

Rachel Windham asked if there had been consideration of floating holidays. In clinical areas, medical care must be continually provided and so there must be continual staffing. A skeleton crew works these holidays and may choose later what days they will take as their legal holiday, in consultation with a departmental schedule. Rachel reported that this system has worked well in Health Affairs for a long time.

David replied that the Committee was open to suggestions but said that as a department head he was concerned already about tracking comp time and adverse weather time. Floating holidays would be one more item to track.

Sue Morand thought that the floating holiday idea was a very good one since the entire staff of the University does not deal with students. These Employees should not be penalized on these holidays.

Janet Tysinger felt it ludicrous to think that classes could run without staff to support classrooms, etc. Running the University for two days without Employees would be near impossible, she asserted. She felt that examining alternatives on how to staff these days would be the best way to go. The Chair added that the question of how holidays are determined also could bear examination.

Marshall Wade suggested that the University determine the number of staff needed. He agreed with Rachel that a floating holiday would be the best alternative, particularly if the holiday will not affect the entire staff of the University. In his office, some Employees are in better position to work during holidays: those without families, for example.

Ken Litowsky noted a number of options to deal with this problem. One is the floating holiday, with the administrative hassles already mentioned. However, if the University does not choose to utilize a floating holiday, and Employees are required to work on State-designated holidays, these Employees must receive two and a half times their normal compensation. They must receive holiday premium pay plus equal time off.

In addition, holidays are spaced to give Employees a break between relatively long periods without a break. This situation has been comfortable for Employees, and a change will result in a certain amount of dissatisfaction. Ken recalled that Employees do not receive the same fall and spring holidays that students do.

Also, many school systems close at the same time the University does currently, bringing up the issue of day care for Employees’ dependents. Employees often use these popularly recognized holidays to be with other working relatives and movement of Labor Day and Good Friday may reduce this “family time.”

Laurie Charest noted that if floating holidays are used, all departments must be open and some Employees must work these holidays. Laurie recalled the discussion common to many departments concerning which Employees would be allowed to take New Year’s Day off, since every Employee would want to take this time and some were forced to work. There will be no holiday premium for working Labor Day, but someone will have to work that day. Laurie encouraged members to examine closely the “other side” of a floating holiday.

Ken noted that this problem was brought to the attention of Human Resources only in the last couple of days and that so far, every suggestion has spun off five more questions. He asked Forum members to e-mail any suggestions to him.

Kay Spivey asked what consideration was given to placing these instructional days on fall, spring, or Christmas break. David answered that the Committee had added one instructional day to the previously free Thursday of Fall Break, one day to the end of each semester, and will begin the Spring semester one day earlier. In the Spring, the semester will begin on a Monday and end on a Thursday, versus beginning on a Tuesday and ending on a Wednesday.

Kay asked if students could absorb another day removed from their breaks. David noted that students Aaron Nelson and Katherine Kraft served on the Calendar Committee, and felt strongly that Spring Break should not be disturbed. Kay replied that Employees feel as strongly that Labor Day and Good Friday not be disturbed.

Sue Morand asked how many days needed to be filled. David replied that there had been some confusion about the calendar, since General Administration consulted the 1995 calendar, which had 146 instructional days. The 1997 calendar has 144 instructional days, with the Wednesday before Thanksgiving made a non-class day, and the Spring semester’s beginning moved from Monday to Tuesday. These changes left six days to be replaced, rather than four, if the Committee kept the 1995 calendar in the other respects.

Sue summarized that there are two days that need to be “found” to make room for Good Friday and Labor Day on the calendar. She asked if the semester could be opened another day earlier or later. David replied that another day earlier causes a problem with opening up the dormitories and orientation for freshman students. He noted that orientation used to be three days but has been cut already due to telephone registration. General College feels that freshman orientation days have been cut as much as possible; any more would hurt the instruction of freshmen and the educational mission of the institution.

Mary Alston conceded that it is good to have a week between the end of examinations and Commencement. Yet, she felt it a long time to hold such a break and asked if it would be feasible to add a teaching day to the end of the semester. David answered that the Committee had considered this possibility also. There is a rule on campus that seventy-two hours after the last exam on campus grades are delivered. This means that grades are not delivered until Wednesday, and diplomas must be checked out by the Saturday before Commencement. Thus, there are only two and a half working days to clear grades for around 3,500 students, pull diplomas and prepare for graduation.

David said he was willing to consider one day less and have exams end on Monday, but the Dean’s Office says that the bulk of its clearances must be done for it to do its job in time.

The Chair clarified that the Forum is being asked to consider what to do about the two days which have been holidays for State Employees since the calendar for 1997-98 had been set.

George Sharp asked if consideration had been given to eliminating these holidays for all staff. This course should be unnecessary since many staff have nothing to do with students on a day-to-day basis. He asked if the Committee was looking for ways to insure needed staff were available on campus for these two holidays.

Ken Litowsky replied that the group was not looking to eliminate holidays, but rather to accomplish a staffing need with the least amount of disruption to the academic, medical and staff side. George assumed that the University could designate two other days as holidays and eliminate Labor Day and Good Friday as holidays. Everything is still under consideration, according to David Lanier.

Delores Jarrell mentioned that because classes begin on Monday some offices have been required to open on Sunday. She asked David Lanier whether this was parallel to the issue under discussion. She was not certain which offices were open and which were not on the Sunday before classes, but imagined that these could be the offices that could be designated “essential” to operation during Labor Day and Good Friday.

David recalled that the Chancellor and the Provost felt that the University could operate without Employees for these two State holidays. In speaking with the Provost, he noted that students were not happy with the idea of not having Employees available on these holidays. It was at this point David decided to consult with the Employee Forum.

Laurie Charest conceded the usefulness of keeping these holidays for Employees, but repeated that Employees working State holidays must be paid two and a half times their regular rate. Employees working the Sunday before classes have the option to adjust their schedule to receive comp time or be paid overtime if they work more than 40 hours (one and a half times their regular pay).

Rachel Windham asked if there were staff representation on the academic Calendar Committee. David replied that this was the first time in 11 years that an issue had crossed over into staff concerns. In fact, the Committee’s official name is the Student/Faculty Academic Calendar Committee. Except for David Lanier and Peggy Berryhill, the Committee consists of deans, directors, faculty and student representatives.

Janet Tysinger asked if the 1997-98 calendar is “set in stone.” Laurie Charest and others noted that the Chancellor had approved the `97-’98 calendar, but offered that the same questions will likely emerge in future years. She was not sure that the current situation was irrelevant.

The Chair asked if a motion should emerge from the discussion about the Forum’s recommendation regarding the two holidays, or did the Forum merely wish for David to be aware of the issues involved?

George Sharp felt that essential staff should be on campus during these two holidays, but requiring a broader cadre of Employees would be a big mistake. Thus, he moved that the Forum recommend to the Committee that a way be found to have essential staff on campus during Labor Day and Good Friday while minimizing disruption to the rest of University staff.

The Chair asked if George moved that the Forum recommend floating holidays to alleviate the staffing problem. Ned Brooks noted that the motion as stated did not advocate the use of floating holidays, and that the days in question would remain designated as State holidays. George agreed with Ned’s interpretation. The Chair thanked Ned for his clarification.

The Chair restated George’s motion that Labor Day and Good Friday remain holidays and departments deal with coverage individually for these holidays. George said that it would need to be determined the minimum number of Employees needed to staff the University during these two holidays. Outside of departments directly affected, the holiday would remain as normal for the remaining University staff.

The Chair called for a second. Before the second, Marshall Wade pointed out that Dr. Floyd had pledged to work with the “leadership” of the Forum to resolve the issue. There may be no need for George’s motion, since Dr. Floyd said he would work with the Forum’s Executive Committee. Marshall thought it good that the Forum was having this discussion, but noted that the Forum would already be players in the decision.

George replied that his motion was intended to determine the sentiment of the majority and he was not certain what that sentiment would be. Marshall thought that since the Forum would be part of the decision process, the Forum had no need of a motion; rather, the Forum could make a motion, if necessary, after a decision had been reached.

Janet Tysinger noted that if the decision were to be made in the next month before the Forum were to meet again, it would be best to get the Forum’s consensus now.

Sue Morand made a point of order that the motion under consideration should not be discussed until a second had been obtained. The Chair thanked Sue for her salient point. Ned Brooks seconded George’s motion.

Mona Couts felt that these holidays could follow a similar pattern to what is done already: libraries stay open on staff holidays. What would be needed would be to increase the number of staff in instructional departments on campus during the holidays in question. Every department would not need to stay open. Somehow, the Executive Committee, individual departments or someone else would need to determine for staffing levels.

Beverly Williams noted that in the Student Health Service, for example, Mona’s suggestion would be easier said than done. If these holidays are eliminated, Student Health Service will have to stay open. The Chair commented that many other departments will have to stay open though some have dealt with the problem for years.

Rachel Windham cautioned against forwarding any motion or resolution from the Forum in the absence of clarity about relevant budgetary issues. Employees working on designated holidays will earn premium pay. She urged the body to understand possible impositions on departments that are already strapped for cash.

The Chair asked if there was further discussion. George restated his motion to recommend that a way be found so that essential personnel are present on these two holidays but that the rest of University staff (“non-essential personnel”) have these days as holidays as in the past.

The Chair called a vote, and division was called. Nine Delegates voted for the motion; sixteen against. The motion was thus defeated.

Sue Morand suggested that non-essential personnel be given a floating holiday while essential personnel gain a regular holiday. Representatives from Human Resources indicated that this solution would not work under State policies.

Tommy Griffin noted that holidays are designated by the State Personnel Commission. He asked if the real issue were how the University would pay Employees who would be forced to work.

Laurie Charest replied that this was just one of many pertinent issues. The State Personnel Commission sets the holiday schedule for the State, but universities typically have had much leeway to set their holiday schedule to match their academic activities. For example, there are as many as two extra days added onto the Christmas-New Year break in order to match the academic calendar more closely.

The State Personnel Commission allows the University to set its own schedule as long as it contains the authorized number of holidays and meets statutory requirements. Human Resources submits the University’s schedule annually. One option is for the University to submit a 1997-98 holiday schedule that did not include Labor Day or Good Friday, but every department must be would have to be open on these days. Individual Employees could take vacation leave but departments would have to be staffed with no additional compensation for those working.

Another option would be for the University to move the Labor Day holiday to the Wednesday before Thanksgiving and the Good Friday to the Friday of Spring Break. Laurie recalled Ken’s point that these were nice times to be with one’s families and to break up the University schedule. It would be a long stretch without a break between Martin Luther King Day and Memorial Day and between the 4th of July and Thanksgiving. She also noted that families with small children may have to schedule child care while working during Good Friday and Labor Day, since schools will be closed then.

The Chair asked if the Forum wished to request more time to send this issue to Committee to report back at its August 7 meeting. She hoped that issues could clarify themselves by that point.

Laurie Charest did not know why Dr. Floyd had set a thirty-day deadline to deal with this question except to move along and to allow Employees to plan their 1997 vacations. She said the University’s 1997 holiday schedule may have to be changed. This change would not affect Good Friday of 1997. The earliest change would be Labor Day of 1997. She would be willing to ask Dr. Floyd about the need to resolve the issue within thirty days.

The Chair asked if the Forum wished to refer the issue to Personnel Policies for its August 7 meeting. At that point, the Forum could make a more informed recommendation.

Marshall Wade pointed out that Dr. Floyd had already requested the Executive Committee’s involvement in this process, and he wondered if the Forum needed to hold parallel discussions in two different Committees. The Chair felt that this issue could be worked out with Dr. Floyd.

Janet Tysinger thought that since this was such a volatile issue, it would be best to take the issue out and discuss it with constituents. She advised posting discussion to the Forum list so that Employees would have a chance to explore how they felt about the issue. The Chair asked if Delegates were willing to do this, stating she felt it was a good idea. Members agreed with Janet’s suggestion.

Ken Litowsky cautioned that members should make sure to have accurate information about the different sides of the calendar issue, so that misinformation was kept to a minimum. Janet thought it would be best for an official representative from the Forum post the topic for discussion. Ken referred the group to Section X. Page 23 of the Human Resources Manual for information on holiday pay and holiday premium pay to estimate the exact costs to departments.

The Chair offered to e-mail on the subject to the Forum newsgroup and listserv. Sue Morand asked the Chair to post this information to Human Resources Facilitators, as well.

It was asked that discussion continue within this group. Laurie Charest asked that the communication emphasize that this Labor Day, September 2, 1996, will not be affected.

Beverly Williams asked if there will be any communication from Human Resources to department heads, so that they may respond in turn with their sentiments. Laurie responded that while the department would like to do this, she was not sure what the department’s role was in the discussion, since the decision had been made without consideration of the factors cited by the Forum. Human Resources would like to undertake this communication, if it becomes an option.

Mona Couts wished to confirm that Human Resources and the Forum have a chance to have input into this decision when the next Academic Calendar year is decided. The Chair said she would request Forum representation on that Committee.

Kay Spivey asked why the University could not reexamine the 1997-98 calendar if discussion so warranted. David Lanier responded that the Calendar Committee only recommends, and that on many occasions, including this one, what was recommended did not parallel what emerged from the Chancellor and the Provost. David said that the calendar had not yet been published, anticipating more discussion. He thought reexamination of the calendar would need to go back to the Chancellor and the Provost.

The Chair thanked David Lanier and Ken Litowsky for their time and responses.

Committee Reports

Chair Dianne Crabill of the Nominating Committee noted the group would meet at noon July 10 in room 307 of Business and Finance. She reported that an article would go into the University Gazette announcing the upcoming nomination process. A letter soliciting nominations to the Forum would go out July 15 and all nominations were due by August 3. Employees may make their nominations via the Forum web page at http://www.unc.edu/staff/forum/nomform.html. Administrative Data Processing will help the Committee determine how many Employees are in each Division and provide mail labels for the nomination forms.

Speaking for Chair Leon Hamlett of the Orientation Committee, Dianne Crabill reported the group had met the Thursday before to discuss orientation processes for incoming Delagates. She said that the group would have more news to report in the next month.

Speaking for Chair Peter Schledorn of the Personnel Policies Committee, Sharon Cheek reported the group had met to discuss the exempt Employee issue. An e-mail from Don Thomas concerning parking permit allocations had been discussed also and was included in the Forum’s Routing File. The Committee would welcome any comments on these issues and the academic calendar concern.

Neither the Compensation and Benefits or Public Affairs Committees had anything to report.

Co-Chair Nancy Klatt of the Recognition and Awards Committee reported the group had met and discussed the Employee Fair surveys received concerning University recognition programs. The Committee is creating a letter to send to the heads of departments without recognition programs whose Employees expressed interest in having such a program.

The Committee discussed the proposed name change of the Forum’s Community Award (3-Legged Stool). The Committee decided, after an extensive survey, to recommend to the Executive Committee that the Award retain its original name. The Chair asked that a motion regarding the 3-Legged Stool Award wait until the Forum’s August meeting, when more Delagates would be present.

Pamela Shoaf pointed out that a general request for e-mail had met with little response. She advised the Forum and Committee Chairs send out e-mail in order to receive a substantive response. The Chair agreed with Pamela’s comment.

The Committee discussed creating a booklet about University Awards and Recognition Programs, in consultation with Human Resources. Financial resources may be the main impediment to pursuing this project.

Chair Jennifer Pendergast of University Committee Assignments Committee reported that her group has had much success with e-mail in recruiting representatives to the University Insurance Committee. There are staff vacancies on that Committee as well as the Substance Abuse Task Force and the Sexual Harassment Advisory Committee, from which Darryl Russell has recently resigned.

The University Committee Assignments Committee sent letters to all University Committee Chairs requesting information about the composition and meeting times of each Committee. The Forum Assistant used this information to create an index of Committees with e-mail links to the Chair of each, at http://www.unc.edu/staff/forum/committees/commlist.html. Janet Tysinger commented that Employees may submit a form electronically indicating their interest in serving on various University Committees via http://www.unc.edu/staff/forum/committees/comm_form.html. Jennifer thanked Janet and Matt for their contributions in creating these pages, and recommended that members take the opportunity to examine them.

Chair Sharon Cheek of the Career Development Committee reported the group had met twice in the past month. At the first meeting, on June 11, Norm Loewenthal had given the group a list of available evening classes and demographic data about who takes these classes. The Committee is in the process of surveying a random group of Employees to determine usage and desire to take evening courses. At its June 18 meeting, the Committee continued its work to create the Employee survey.

The Chair asked if Ned Brooks, convenor of the Forum’s Pan-University Allocation Task Force, had anything to say on the new University Budget Committee. Ned noted that the sentence stating that the increase in overhead will not affect schools or departments probably referred to recurring overhead receipts, since the allocation commonly affects non-recurring overhead in schools. Instead, there is a shift of monies more centrally allocated by the Committee than previously. The Chair thanked Ned for his comments.

No Faculty Council Liaisons were present to make reports.

Human Resources Update

Laurie Charest reminded the assembly that the University Blood Drive is July 30 from 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. The University needs donors and volunteers to assist the process. Each department should have a recruiter to contact Employees, or, interested parties may call 96-BLOOD to set up an appointment. Fiona Bradley at 2-2348 is available also for information about departmental recruiters or other questions. To sign up to volunteer, call Bob Schreiner at 6-3942, or Candy Furelle at 2-0438. There is a goal of 1,000 pints and the theme is “Rise to the Challenge of Giving.”

Those who volunteered or donated last year recall enormous problems with lack of Red Cross staffing. This year, the Red Cross have doubled their staff size and have brought in computer registration for those who have donated previously in the area. Laurie hoped that last year’s problems will be resolved, and that the entire process should take a maximum of ninety minutes. She hoped Forum members will tell other Employees about the changes made to improve the process, since the Blood Drive is so important and summer is typically a time of short supply for blood with the students away. The University’s July drive is the Red Cross’ largest one day event and is vital to its efforts. She called upon Forum members to encourage their co-workers to donate and volunteer.

Updating the progress of House Bill 1139, which dealt with grievance policies and procedures, Laurie reported that the Legislature’s adjournment effectively killed the bill for this year. Of course, the bill could be resurrected, but it would have to start completely over in the July 8 session which she did not think a likely possibility.

Laurie reported that the WPPR gathering process is almost complete. Fewer than forty ratings are outstanding for the entire campus. She expected these ratings to be collected soon and Human Resources would have ratings on file for every Employee in the near future.

Laurie introduced Jerry Howerton, the Program Coordinator for the University’s In-Range Salary Adjustment Program. This Program has been approved by the State Personnel Commission and became effective July 1.

Jerry noted that he had received a number of calls after the June 19 University Gazette article about the Policy from Employees and supervisors. Jerry offered his assistance to explain the program and develop a departmental plan. The Policy will be locally administered: departments will determine their own adjustment programs, who will be eligible for adjustments, and their funding priorities for in-range adjustments in conjunction with other funding priorities. In a flexible manner, Jerry will review in-range adjustments requests to insure University and State program compliance.

Jerry noted that several departments have adopted plans developed by his office. He expected the first requests for adjustment to arrive in the next week.

Jerry reiterated that the range of adjustment will be from 1-10%, and the Policy was put into place to deal strictly with the salary compression issue, particularly the lack of substantial merit pay over the years. There is a one page request form which may require additional documentation, job descriptions, etc., but Jerry’s office wished to streamline the process as much as possible for departments creating criteria for approval by Human Resources.

Human Resources will work with departments as much as possible. A memo will be sent to deans, directors and department heads explaining the policy in greater detail and inviting departments to send individuals for training in Policy administration. Human Resources will make training available in July and on an ongoing basis.

Human Resources recommends that there be a departmental plan in place for each department. Human Resources will review requests to insure compliance with State and University policy and the departmental plan.

Rachel Windham complimented Jerry and his office on how responsive they have been in this very complex issue. She said she had heard that his office had provided the best help that some had ever received regarding a new policy on campus. Jerry thought the Policy was a good one and that he was glad to be associated with it. He hoped it would ease some salary compression problems as well as some other salary administration issues. (Model plans and the Forum’s discussion of the policy are available at
Announcements & Questions

Bob Schreiner and Fiona Bradley were present as representatives of the University’s Blood Drive. Fiona noted that Employees could find recruiter and other information at http://www.sph.unc.edu/blood96. Those who would like to be a recruiter for the Drive should phone her or contact their departmental recruiter, or call 96-BLOOD. Employees can get Blood Drive posters from Fiona as well.

Bob Schreiner noted that the Drive needs around 155 volunteers, mainly from 7:30-10 a.m. and 4-6:30 p.m. He asked the Forum members to recruit one Employee each to either donate blood or volunteer at the Drive. The Chair emphasized that the work was an important part of the University’s mission as well as a lot of fun and that she had signed up to work the 7:30 a.m. shift.

The Chair congratulated Tommy Gunter on his recent promotion in Contracts & Grants and Delores Jarrell on her move to the Athletic Department.

In the Forum Office, the publication “Report Card on UNC-Chapel Hill” is available for review. Institutional Research prepared the document, and Employees should feel free to examine the document for comments before the July 10 deadline.

 

In the absence of further discussion, the Chair called for a motion to adjourn. Tommy Nixon made this motion, with Mary Alston seconding. There was no discussion, and the meeting adjourned at 11:25 a.m.

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

 

Matt Banks, Recording Secretary.

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