MINUTES 12/8/05

8:30AM – Holmes Student Center 406


Present:    Elizabeth Buck, Gay Campbell, Sara Clayton, Marcia Dick, Glenda Jones, Theresa Kinniry,

Joe Koch, Jay Monteiro, Nancy Schuneman, Andy Small,  Julia Sober, LaRonda Thuestad, and Rachel Turner.  


Absent:      Margie Foshe, Jason Hutchison, Linda Jennings


Guests:     Tim Griffin, Jodi Tyrrell 


I.                    Call to Order


The regular meeting of the Operating Staff Council was called to order at 8:40 a.m. on Thursday, December 8, 2005, by President Rachel Turner.


II.         Approval of Agenda


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


III.        Approval of Minutes of November 10, 2005, Meeting


A motion was made to accept the minutes. The motion was seconded and passed.


IV.        Approval of Minutes of December 2, 2005, Special Meeting


            A motion was made to accept the minutes pending clarification of the 75% initiative that Steve

Cunningham spoke of.


V.         Treasurer’s Report


Treasurer Elizabeth Buck reported that there were no expenditures for the month of November so no treasurer’s report was prepared. 


VI.        Announcements/Correspondence


A.         Turner thanked the Council for attending the special meeting on December 2, even though it was short notice.  Turner passed around the ISU Newsletter.  She also passed around the list of classifications for those non-negotiated operating staff that will receive the additional 2% increment on January 1.


VII.       Committee Reports


A.         Personnel/Staff Developments/Benefits


Sara Clayton presented a new draft of the letter requesting that the summer work schedule be made a permanent benefit instead of being decided on a yearly basis.  The letter also requests that the summer schedule begin two weeks earlier in the middle of May, and end the first full week of August.  A motion was made to send the letter.  It will be sent to Steve Cunningham.


B.         Elections and Appointments – No Report.


C.         Public Relations 


            Julia Sober reported that the committee is working on updating the OSC brochure. 


            D.         Visiting Committees/Guests  - None.


E.         EAC  - No Report.


F.         UAC  - Turner reported on the Board of Trustees meeting held December 1, 2005.


            1.  The board approved the construction of parking lots near the residence halls and also to reconfigure the parking lot near the Fieldhouse.


            2.  Kathy Bittner was named Vice President of External Affairs.  Koch asked if Bittner’s appointment meant that a new division has been created.  If so, a representative from the division should be included on the Council.  Turner will look into this.


            3.  IBHE has named Judy Irwin as the new director.  The IBHE will be looking at faculty salaries in Illinois and how they compare to other states.


            4.  It was noted that at the IBHE meeting in Urbana that legislators indicated they did not realize how much the budget cuts hurt educational institutions.


            5.  The NIU Foundation reported that they raised $6.7 million for the Barsema Alumni and Visitor Center and $7.1 million for the new Athletic facility.  They have had 45 gifts of $100,000 or more.  The foundation has also secured a grant to promote women in Engineering.  The foundation has raised $85 million in the past five years.


            6.  President Peters spoke about his involvement with the Abe Lincoln Commission on Study Abroad.  He noted how transformative overseas experiences can be for students and how vital these experiences are to international affairs. 


7.  There was a report on underprepared student programming.  The Upward Bound and ACE programs, serving students in Aurora and Rockford, assist students with preparation for college.


            G.         University Council


1.  Turner reported that there was discussion about the budget.  The budget for next year is still unknown and state officials will likely start budget talks in January or February. As of right now, there is no capital bill.  If one is not forthcoming, it will be the third year in a row without a capital bill.  This is of concern. It is difficult for universities to continue to give raises with no new money coming in and it is not known how long the university can continue to give raises under these circumstances.  All recent raises have been internally funded.


2.  The search committee for a new provost is underway.  Several members are expected to be appointed to the committee to reflect the diversity of the university.


3.  Dean Joe Grush of LA&S is slated to give a presentation about adjusted time scheduling issues to the Board of Trustees.


4.  The Illinois Articulation Initiative looks at whether course offerings fit the core curriculum of a particular degree program.  Universities are now being asked to monitor this themselves.  There will still be oversight by IBHE, but universities will be more involved in the process.


H.         Special Events


Thuestad reported that the annual StaffFest luncheon would be held Thursday, August 3, 2006, in the Duke Ellington Ballroom at Holmes Student Center.


VIII.      Old Business –



            A.         Bylaws Changes


Joe Koch presented a copy of the proposed changes to the bylaws for first reading.  The first proposal would be an addition to Article 1, paragraph 1.25 under the duties of the Vice President.  The change would require the vice president to automatically move into the president position should the elected president be unable to complete his/her term.   


The second proposed change would be 5.12, which states that any Council member who misses three meetings will be notified in writing by the president about the excess absences.  Upon a fourth absence in the course of a fiscal year, the Council member would be removed from the Council.  There was some discussion about whether or not there should be some allowance made for unusual circumstances.  It was suggested that language be added to the proposed change indicating that removal from the Council would occur only after due consideration of the reasons for the excessive absences. Koch will make the proposed changes and the executive committee will review it once more.


            B.        Mail Distribution


Turner presented a draft of the letter regarding the problems with operating staff not always getting their mail.  The Council approved the letter and a copy will be sent to the Building Service department and one to Food Service since these are the two areas where the problem seems most prevalent.


            C.         Ride-Share Program


Jodi Tyrrell said as of right now there is nothing on the HR website, but she said there is a meeting scheduled regarding updating the HR website and she will mention the Ride Share Program.


IX.        New Business –


A.         Guest Speakers


Turner asked if there are any guest speakers the Council would like to hear from. Koch pointed out that the president of the university used to attend one meeting a year to meet the Council members. Andy Small said whenever there are new administrators appointed on campus, they should be invited to speak to the Council.  Small also suggested that Paul Stoddard, President of the Faculty Senate, be invited, and Gay Campbell suggested Laura Lundelius of Parking Services.  Clayton also pointed out that operating staff representatives from various university committees and commissions should be reporting to the Council on the activities of the committees/commissions on which they serve.


B.         Physical Plant


Small mentioned that the Physical Plant has been downsized so much that routine maintenance for departments now takes much longer than it used to and in some cases, the Physical Plant is charging overtime rates to departments for routine things.  Small did not suggest that the Council take any specific action, but he just wanted us to be aware of it.


C.         Employee Bills


Glenda Jones also pointed out that when employees have debts on campus that go unpaid their paychecks can be garnished and they should be aware of that.  It was suggested that an article be placed in the newsletter addressing this issue.


C.         Survey Results


Nancy Schuneman asked Tyrrell about the survey that was conducted several months ago regarding Human Resource Services.  Tyrrell said there was a meeting held to discuss the report.  She said Steve Cunningham has talked about implementing Service Assurance Initiatives.


X.         Adjournment – The meeting adjourned at 9:55 a.m.