OPERATING STAFF COUNCIL MEETING
MINUTES 9/12/02
8:30AM - HSC406

Present:   Judy Burgess, Elizabeth Buck, Gay Campbell, Sara Clayton, Michele Crase, Marcia Dick, Ada Hetland, Linda Jennings, Jay Monteiro , Glenda Jones, Theresa Kinniry, Joe Koch, Andy Small, Donna Smith, and LaRonda Thuestad.

Excused:  Dena Olson

Guest:   Steve Cunningham, Tim Griffin, Kim Hensley, Jan Rintala, and Jodi Tyrrell

I.     Call to Order

        The meeting was called to order by President Sara Clayton at 8:35AM.

II.    Approval of Agenda

        A motion was made to approve the agenda.  The motion was seconded and passed.

III.   Approval of Minutes of August 8, 2002, Meeting
 
        A motion was made to accept the minutes as amended:
                V.B.  Tyrrell announced that the secretarial registry will be voided on August 30, 2002.  The  week of September 9th will be set aside to take new
                tests for the secretarial registry.  The typing  part of the test will be lifted if one has taken that part of the test within the past two years.
                            Delete sentence that reads, “The tests will be 2 ½ hours long.”
                V.B.  3rd Paragraph.   Add Human Resources to first sentence before web site.  Change  sentence to read, “After that, HRS will begin the process to
                fill the position.”
                VI.B.  Change “girls”  to “team.”
                VI.E.  Correct typographical error.
        The motion was seconded and passed.

IV.  Treasurer’s Report

        Elizabeth Buck distributed copies of the Treasurer’s report for the two-month period ending 8/31/02.  Buck went through the report with the Council,
        explaining the expenses and the balances.  After general discussion, a motion was made to accept the report.  The motion was seconded and passed.
 
V.    Announcements/Correspondence

        1.      Sara Clayton announced the Council of Councils Conference to be held Friday, October 11, 2002, at the University of Illinois at Chicago.  Clayton
        also distributed copies of the agenda for the Council’s perusal and a sign-up sheet for those interested in attending the event.

        2.     Clayton passed around a copy of a memo from Steve Cunningham explaining the new procedure for filling secretary vacancies.

        3.     Clayton announced that Provost Legg asked the Council to appoint someone to be on the search committee for the Vice Provost.  Donna Smith was
        appointed.  Smith will check to see if she will have the time to serve.  If Smith cannot serve, Theresa Kinniry will represent the Council on the Search
        Committee.  The second alternate will be Marcia Dick.

        4.     Clayton had a copy of the CMS Group Insurance “Opt-Out” Plan memo from Steve Cunningham for anyone on the Council to look at if they had not
        seen it.  Clayton announced that Cunningham would be visiting the Council’s meeting today, and if they had questions concerning any of these memos, they
        could ask those during Cunningham’s visit.

        5.      Michele Crase announced that if anyone had concerns about campus parking or sidewalks, they should e-mail those to her.

        6.     Judy Burgess announced that Michele Crase has been promoted to Associate Director of Environmental Health and Safety.

        7.     Jodi Tyrrell announced that Elizabeth Ortiz has resigned from NIU and that her last day at Northern will be Friday, October 4, 2002.

        8.     Tyrrell announced the annual fund-raiser for RAMP [Regional Access and Mobilization Project] on Saturday, September 21, 2002.

        9.     Tyrrell announced that Ken Mundy had distributed a memorandum to Human Resources personnel with information on the cost of printing paper
        checks compared to direct deposit, that Human Resources will be open on the mornings of 11/29/02 and 12/30/02 for people to pick up paper checks,
        and that an on-line student employment application is being created.

        10.    Tyrrell informed the Council that the State Universities Civil Service Systems Office has developed three classifications in the Civil Service category
        and is proposing a three-year pilot program.  All three of these classifications will require a degree. The classifications would be Accounting Associate,
        Business/Administrative Associate, and Human Resource Associate.  The idea with this program is to get a larger group of people eligible, while allowing
        each university to develop their own specifications, giving more flexibility with Civil Service jobs.  The Rule of Three will be suspended, and scores will be
        banded.

        11.     Burgess announced that she is resigning as Operating Staff Council representative on the University Council.  Joe Koch will become the ex-officio
        member, and Linda Jennings will serve as his alternate.  Marcia Dick will serve as Clayton’s alternate.

VI.   Committee Reports

A.    Personnel/Staff Development/Benefits

        The first meeting of this committee was held September 9, 2002, and Ada Hetland and Dena Olson were elected co-chairs.  Hetland has contacted Scott
        Mooberry and is on the list to receive a copy of the minutes of the University Benefits Committee.  This will help the OSC Committee with questions that
        may come up and keep them from going through the same issues again.  Some issues they may discuss would be bi-weekly payroll and chiropractic care if
        recommended by a physician.

B.    Elections and Appointments.  No report.

C.    Public Relations

        Koch announced Linda Jennings as the Chair of the Award Committee and listed committee members.  Koch also announced that the Public Relations
        Committee meets the 1st Thursday of each month.

D.     Visiting Committee

        Jan Rintala, Chair of North Central Association Reaccreditation Self-Study Plan Committee joined the Council meeting at 9:15 a.m.  After
        identifying herself to the Council, Dr. Rintala distributed a handout to the Council and then described the purpose of the committee and the major
        components of the reaccreditation process.  She does not anticipate a problem with this process, but the university does have to make the case.  This is
        important because it can impact eligibility for funding.  The NCA team is scheduled to visit the campus in February 2004.  They will make sure the report is
        true and honest and meets the 24 General Institutional Requirements, as well as the five criteria required for accreditation.  NIU goes through this process
        every ten years. After a general explanation of the process, Dr.Rintala opened the floor to the Council for discussion.

        Steve Cunningham, Associate Vice President of Administration and Human Resources, joined the Council at 10:15 a.m.  Cunningham distributed
        a copy of the overview document of the strategic plan for Human Resource Services [HRS] Excellence 2003 Initiative.  He explained that following many
        retirements last spring, as well as the implementation of the PeopleSoft Human Resource Information and Payroll systems [HRIS], HRS had to reorganize.
        This was officially carried out last May.  Cunningham introduced Kim Hensley to the Council.  Ms. Hensley leads the technology for HRS and is the
        Director of Operations.  Roughly 60 people work in HRS and they carry a very large set of responsibilities.  New information systems cause substantial
        change in daily operations, then upgrades come along, bringing more change. The next PeopleSoft upgrade is scheduled for 6/1/03. HRS is charged with
        multiple responsibilities, including institutional compliance, external audit compliance, grievances and investigations, information system management, and an
        extensive network of human resource policies and procedures; while also maintaining qualitative services, such as counseling, conflict resolution, employee
        relations, and representing NIU in serving as the friend of our employees.

        After giving the Council time to peruse the HRS overview document, Cunningham lead a discussion on any of the topics members wanted to discuss.
        Cunningham reminded the Council that change cannot be stopped, and he is aware that there is a sense that HRS needs to do a better job communicating
        all the changes to the campus community, which are extensive.  In responding to questions about internal promotions in HRS, Cunningham shared that his
        philosophy of leadership is to encourage employee development, including internal training and upgrades and to promote internal mobility.  He indicated that
        this type of career mobility is an important benefit for Civil Service employees.

        One of the Council’s largest concerns with HRS is the telephone answering and customer service system.  Hensley asked anyone on the Council to feel free
        to participate in testing new systems and to e-mail her with their suggestions.  She also volunteered to distribute drafts of campus requirements for HRS
        transaction processing to all the Council members that wanted copies and informed the Council that forms on the website were being enhanced almost
        daily.

        Both Cunningham and Hensley reiterated that HRS is here to serve the campus community in the best way possible, emphasizing qualitative services for
        everyone.  The Council members and Cunningham spent time in discussion and dialog.  Cunningham ended his session distributing a DRAFT copy of the
        University Holidays schedule for 2003 that will be taken to the University Council for ratification before becoming final.
 
E.     EAC.  Clayton announced the meeting at Springfield, Illinois, on October 3 and 4, 2002.  No report.

F.     UAC.  No report.

G.     University Council

        Burgess reported business as usual at the meeting.  Sue Willis, Executive Secretary of the University Council, announced that the minutes and reports from
        each meeting, as well as campus committees, are now available on the web.  President Peters reported that NIU is holding steady after a 13.8 billion dollar
        adjustment.  Peters expressed some concern for student services and wants to work to keep those at a high level.  He reported that new maintenance
        projects have been deferred, doing only the ones necessary.  The FY03 budget seems intact, still early for FY04.  November 1, 2002, is the deadline for
        IBHE appropriations applications.  NIU is asking for 1M for planning and 16M for Stevenson Hall renovations.

        Barsema Hall did open two months earlier than planned and was under budget at completion.  NIU’s student enrollment growth is up this year to around
        25,000.  That number includes 18,000 undergraduate students, 6,500 graduate students, and 330 law students.  President Peters is wondering how far we
        can stretch without getting new faculty.  He does not want to put a cap on student enrollment.

H.     Special Events Committee.

        LaRonda Thuestad and Sara Clayton will be meeting with Dr. Eddie Williams to discuss next year’s event.  Holmes Student Center will be in the midst of
        repairs on the ballroom, so the Council would like to hold the event at the Convocation Center.  If Dr. Williams approves this request, Dena Olson will
        check to see if a shuttle could be provided for the event.

VII.     Old Business

No old business.

VIII.    New Business

No new business.

IX.      Adjournment

A motion was made to adjourn the meeting at 12:05 p.m. The motion was seconded and passed.
 
 

Respectfully submitted,

Gay Campbell
OSC Secretary