February 19, 2013 Forum Executive Committee minutes
Attending (those who signed in): Dan Barmmer, Gena Carter, Tammy Cox, Jill Crowder, John Gullo, James Holman, Arlene Medder, Chris Meinecke, Danny Nguyen, Jackie Overton, Myra Quick, Charles Streeter
Chair Jackie Overton called the meeting to order at 11:30 a.m. She invited Tammy Cox to present the Forum’s monthly budget report. Cox asked if the committee preferred to see a general accounting in the report or more specific details about the budget. Danny Nguyen said that he preferred to see more detail. Dan Barmmer asked about getting a comparison of this year’s expenses with last year’s, particularly salary support for the Chair. Cox said that $10,000 is usually devoted each year for this purpose. The Chair noted that since Human Resources business manager Dee Perry retired, there has been a struggle to get items paid. She recalled that she had become Forum Chair in March of 2010 but the previous Chair had received the relevant salary support. She noted now that the practice is to pay half the salary support on January 1 and the rest on June 1, which puts her department out of pocket for services rendered since the beginning of the fiscal year. She noted that Public Safety does not receive revenue derived from fines, as the Legislature has deemed that this money should go to local school systems. The Chair noted that she would make a set of requests of the Chancellor’s office as one of her final acts as Chair. Danny Nguyen offered to work with Cox and Forum Assistant Matt Banks to create a roll-up comparing past expenditures with present ones. It was noted that the Staff Development fund expenditures are separate from the Forum’s accounts. The Chair thanked Cox for her efforts to make the Forum accounts make sense. She asked Banks to price out plaques and certificates for the three Kay Wijnberg Hovious outstanding delegate awards, the departing Chancellor and Provost, and former employee Paula Schubert, among other items. Cox asked what the Forum has done to get special allocations of funds. The Chair said that she has made formal requests of the Chancellor.
The Chair noted that the Forum would continue to serve pizza at quarterly Executive Committee meetings to recognize the work that these members do. She asked Myra Quick to send out a notice requesting food for the Wednesday, March 6 social. The Chair said that the Forum had received approval to hold a food drive at the men’s basketball game March 3 at 2 p.m. in the Dean Dome. Delegate Todd Hux will handle distribution of barrels to hold the food, and the Interfaith Council will pick up the food at 5 p.m. that afternoon. She said that Athletics and Sports Marketing will handle publicity. The Chair said that even in a depressed economy Forum members have a responsibility to give back. She noted that a flyer had gone out publicizing the food drive. She noted that the Chancellor’s search is underway. Listeners desiring more detail should contact Board of Trustees Chair Wayne Hargrove. Members discussed Chancellor Thorp’s imminent departure to Washington University of St. Louis later this year.
The Chair noted that the UNC System Staff Assembly will meet April 15 and 16. She said that UNC System President Tom Ross will address the Assembly the morning of the 15th. She proposed that the Executive Committee conduct its business on-line that month and meet at General Administration during the time of Ross’ speech. The Chair asked that Matt Banks e-mail the agenda indicating when Ross will speak when it becomes available. Myra Quick made this motion, seconded by Jill Crowder. There was no discussion and the motion was approved unanimously.
Regarding the NC Vision Coalition, the Chair noted that the group had proposed to monitor progress and implementation of the Advisory Committee on Strategic Directions report. Dan Barmmer proposed that the committee become a part of the Legislative Affairs Committee’s work. James Holman noted the need for more staff participation on the Coalition. Barmmer moved that the NC Vision Coalition become part of the Forum’s Legislative Action Committee. Myra Quick seconded. There was no discussion, and the item was to be placed on the March Forum agenda.
Regarding sexual assault awareness month, James Holman noted that a drafted resolution had come from the work of himself, Christina Lebonville, Dan Barmmer, and Danny Nguyen, from Alan Moran’s original idea. Barmmer read the resolution. Jill Crowder wondered if the University still offers HAVEN (Helping to Advocate Violence Ending Now) training. Gena Carter commented that former grievance coordinator Martha Fowler used to conduct training with Equal Opportunity/ADA Officer Ann Penn. Nguyen said that ideally all employees would be ready to speak with victims of sexual assault under the HAVEN training guidelines. Jill Crowder noted that many Grounds employees wear the HAVEN buttons on campus after having received this training. Members discussed revisions to the resolution. The Chair said that student victims who do not want their names recorded can go to Student Affairs instead of Public Safety. Tammy Cox noted concerns about repeat offenders. The Chair referred Cox to the Clery Act which governs sexual assault reporting. Chris Meinecke moved to suspend the rules regarding first readings in the case of this resolution so that it could be considered on second reading at the March meeting. The committee approved this motion by acclamation.
Dan Barmmer proposed inviting Shamecca Bryant of the Orange County Rape Crisis Center to explain how to deal with sexual assault concerns. The Chair noted that Director of State Relations Jennifer Willis [since moved to April], Dean of the School of Government Mike Smith, and Stephanie Miller of the General Alumni Association are scheduled speakers for March. Dan Barmmer asked about the purpose of having some speakers at Forum meetings. He proposed having agendas available three weeks before meetings to allow delegates to familiarize themselves with speakers. The Chair said that her purpose is to introduce Forum delegates to campus movers and shakers. She noted Dean of the School of Nursing Kristen Swanson as an example of a campus mover who had obtained a Ph. D. program for her School in the past year. Tammy Cox commented that Swanson is highly respected by other deans at the University.
Concerning the Kay Wijnberg Hovious outstanding delegate awards, Chris Meinecke submitted criteria. After some discussion, the committee agreed that the criteria for the award will be presented at the March meeting, voting at the April meeting, and presentation at the Forum’s June retreat. Forum delegates will vote from a ballot and the top three delegates will be selected. The Chair asked that the Forum Assistant include a link to the award criteria and minutes on the March meeting agenda.
The Chair asked for topics for the next Vice Chancellors/Provost meeting. Dan Barmmer commented that the Human Resources benefits statement was a very cool report. He proposed that the document could include information about total state service and retirement benefits. Gena Carter said that these were good suggestions but she did not want to replicate the ORBIT report available on-line. Jill Crowder noted that Facilities Services prints ORBIT reports for its employees every year.
Charles Streeter said that the Education and Career Development committee hoped to work with Kathy Bryant on a survey of educational needs and wants. He said that the committee had a number of ideas for use of the Staff Development fund, including possibly funding subscriptions to Rosetta Stone for employees. It was noted that Chris Chiron had already worked on obtaining Rosetta Stone for housekeepers. Streeter noted that the Forum had taken delivery of the loaner laptops from ITS. He said that ITS will not support these laptops, but they will likely be used for voting purposes during elections. Streeter said that the Membership and Assignments committee will work on logistics for the delegate elections this week. Finally, Streeter said that the Education and Career Development committee had discussed creating a hybrid version of InTouch in order to facilitate production and reduce printing costs. Streeter praised Katie Turner for posting multiple articles on the Forum’s Facebook page.
Myra Quick of the Membership & Assignments committee would handle arrangements for the Forum social in March. James Holman said that the Personnel Issues committee had not met in the last month but would meet next week. Chris Meinecke said that the peer recognition nomination forms have now gone on-line. The committee will accept nominations through April 19. The 3-Legged Stool Community Award nominations form is almost ready to go on-line. The 3-Legged Stool will be presented at the Forum’s retreat June 6, along with the Kay Wijnberg Hovious Outstanding Delegate award. Meinecke asked if there should be one Community Award winner for the entire campus or one per faculty, staff, and student bodies. Matt Banks noted that the Forum has previously issued just one award. The Chair asked Meinecke to see how nominations come in.
John Gullo distributed documents from the UNC System Staff Assembly. He noted questions about the time allotted to read and respond to these documents. He noted support for increasing staff development activities. Gullo noted the mood within the Assembly that going over to the Board of Governors in personnel flexibility might be a good idea. The Chair said that there is likely not a difference between the current situation and moving over to the Board of Governors. Danny Nguyen said that the Human Resources, Diversity, and Benefits committee will meet the next day to discuss a salary increase resolution and the personnel flexibility best practices document. The Chair encouraged Nguyen to use the Forum’s sexual assault awareness month resolution as a prototype for a similar UNC System resolution.
Arlene Medder commented that the Carolina Campus Community Garden had been the source of several science articles. She said that the Healing and Hope program also was underway, along with shiitake mushroom growing, beehive tending, and weed dating. There have been conversations about a proposed redesign of the Garden. The Chair encouraged employees to volunteer for the Garden on Wednesdays from 3-5 p.m. and Sunday from 3-5 p.m.
The Chair distributed copies of the University System’s legislative agenda. She said that the item on “personnel efficiencies and services” will impact staff. She said that President Ross assured the Staff Assembly that General Administration will pursue personnel flexibility and this year it seems likely to happen. Danny Nguyen spoke on the need to write a resolution raising the number of tuition-free classes for staff from two to three. John Gullo recalled that at one time retired employees were allowed free tuition for courses, a benefit which has since ended. He said that the University should revisit this idea. The Chair asked Dan Barmmer and Matt Banks to work on staging a community meeting featuring President Ross and Chancellor Thorp.
With regard to the Vice Chancellor/Provost meeting, Gena Carter said she had received an e-mail from Noreen Montgomery concerning Office of State Personnel policy and dual employment. Montgomery’s e-mail indicated that the spirit of the policy is that adjunct faculty appointments for SPA employees not exceed twelve months and not be renewed. Members noted multiple violations of this policy. Tammy Cox said that dual employment paperwork places the onus on the receiving department to enforce policy. She noted that in the case of EPA non-faculty, this situation is considered an overload of duties which must stop.
James Holman noted a recent meeting with Housekeeping Director Darius Dixon, Vice Chancellor for Human Resources Brenda Malone, Forum Chair Jackie Overton, and Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration Karol Kain Gray. The Chair said that this meeting was a good start to getting everyone to work on the same page. Holman noted that Gray had said she would allow ombuds officer Wayne Blair to attend the next meeting. Holman said that he had produced a list of things for the department to address, particularly with regard to training of crew leaders. He said that the advisory committee had no record of supporting this proposal before it had been suggested recently. The Chair commented that there had been a breakdown in communication somewhere. She said that she would address the subject of Grounds and Housekeeping crew leader training at her next monthly meeting with Chancellor Thorp.
The Chair called for a motion to approve the November, December, and January minutes. Gena Carter said that she had been incorrectly quoted in the December Executive Committee minutes concerning subcontractor background checks. John Gullo proposed to approve these minutes as amended. Arlene Medder seconded. The minutes were approved as amended.
In the absence of further discussion, the meeting adjourned at 1:38 p.m.
Matt Banks, Recording Secretary