Meeting Minutes: June 15, 2006

Attendance

Present: Rex Campbell, Leah Cohn, Michael Devaney, Patricia Fry, Bryan Garton, Leona Rubin (for Philip Johnson), Frank Schmidt, Laura Schopp, Lisa Zanetti, Michael Muchow (Librarians), Dean Yarwood (Retirees), and Rebekah Hart (secretary). Absent: Edward Adelstein, Elizabeth Baker, Ken Benson, Charles Borduin, Catherine Holland, Michael Kramer, William Lamberson, Alan Luger, Kenneth MacLeod, Steven Neal, Tom Phillips, Eileen Porter, Anand Prahlad, Jenice Prather-Kinsey, Jim Sterling, Michael Taksar, Wilson Watt, Roger Worthington, Flore Zephir, Adrienne Hoard (Black Faculty and Staff), and Andrew Simpson (AAUP).

Approval of Minutes

The meeting was called to order by Vice-President Frank Schmidt, serving as Chair, at 3:30 p.m. in room S203 Memorial Union. The Council observed a moment of silence in memory of its member, Bruce Bullock. The minutes of the April 13 and April 27, 2006 council meetings were approved, as were the minutes of the April 19 general faculty meeting. Schmidt welcomed new members Bryan Garton, replacing Bruce Bullock, and Leona Rubin, Veterinary Biomedical Sciences.

Report of Officers

On behalf of President Lamberson, Schmidt reported that we now have the authority to revise our website as needed, without requiring assistance from Information Technology. The website is being updated to reflect the recent changes in membership.

Laura Schopp, Observer to the Board, reported that the Board of Curators had not met in June. The next meeting will be in Kansas City in July.

Rex Campbell, representative to the Intercampus Faculty Council, reported that the most recent meeting had been routine, with various System vice presidents giving reports. Included in the information furnished was the fact that retirements are fully funded. There was some discussion of MOHELA; since the Legislature did not pass the necessary legislation that discussion is now out of date. The budget will include two percent for raises. In addition a draft of the President's order for athletic programs was received; the matter will be placed before the Board of Curators at its next meeting. Schopp inquired about how much flexibility President Floyd will have in terms of the faculty wanting a larger role in athletic oversight. Campbell advised that responsibility for the athletic programs was delegated to the chancellors. Schopp said she had heard that President Floyd was meeting with Chancellor Deaton and Athletic Director Alden; Campbell said that he understood they were working together. A statement had appeared that each campus will have an inter-athletic council which will report to its chancellor, who will instruct the athletic directors to carry out policies. Campbell advised that he believes the current proposed policies are satisfactory. Schmidt inquired about the status of the non-tenure track report and Campbell reported that a subcommittee had been appointed by the Intercampus Faculty Council and is working on the report. There has been feedback from other campuses and the proposal is running into some opposition on other campuses, particularly St. Louis. On this campus, it has been approved by the Faculty Affairs Committee and Provost, who is ready to go forward with the recommendations. The main difference between the draft and the views of Provost Foster is that he would like to see more uniformity across campus. A committee has been appointed, chaired by Vice Provost Ken Dean. Dean advised that a conference call between Stephen Lehmkuhle, Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, and members of the Provost's staff, is scheduled for later in the week and the proposal is on the agenda. He reported that the Provost hopes to see an additional title, such as lecturer, added to the package in the proposal.

Action Items

Schmidt reported that, on the recent faculty ballots, the proposal for extension of the tenure clock for new parents had been approved by a vote of 449 yes, 64 no and 8 abstentions. The vote on the shared governance proposal was 426 yes, 58 no and 26 abstentions. These results have been relayed to Chancellor Deaton. Dean noted that the language in the ballot stated the matters were modifications to the Collected Rules, which ordinarily would go to the Board of Curators. Campbell noted that Mizzou Weekly reported the matters as fait accompli, which is premature. Campbell also reported that at Intercampus Faculty Council the feeling was that any campus could implement these policies and there was no sentiment to take the matter to the Board. Dean indicated he needed to talk to the Chancellor about whether the votes should be implemented as policy. If in conflict with Collected Rules, the matter would have to go through the Board. The ballot issue on the tenure clock grants the Chancellor discretion and the one on governance applies at the unit level so possibly they could be regarded as supplementary to the Collected Rules. There was further discussion on the issue of implementation of the votes.

Discussion Items

Tom Freeman, President of the MU Retirees Association (MURA), advised the Council that MURA had reviewed the structure of the Chancellor's Retiree Advisory Committee and was unhappy with its discovery that all of the representatives of retirees on the Committee were ex officio and thus could not vote. This was discussed with Chancellor Deaton and a written request for modification of the structure of the Committee has been sent. John Bauman, member of MURA, advised that he had served on the Advisory Committee, which consists of 5 faculty, 4 staff and 3 ex officio retirees. Among other things, this past year the Committee voted on nominations to receive the chancellor's awards for post-retirement work. The Committee did not, however, address other retiree concerns, even those within its charge, such as retirement benefits. There was a general discussion of subjects within the charge of the Advisory Committee, including periodic pension increases. The Committee meets with President Floyd and Vice President Hutchinson twice a year. It currently lacks a chair; Steve Lambson has been recruited to act as chair. MURA believes the Committee is in disarray. Schmidt asked about the history of the composition of the Committee and Freeman advised he has never known of voting retired members. Bauman stated he did not know when that state of affairs began but it has been place for some time. The Committee once met regularly with the MURA board and was generally active, but is not now functioning. MURA wants an active committee. The Chancellor has been supportive of the request for changes in the composition of the Committee. There was further discussion of the relationship of the Committee and MURA, funding of benefits and other issues. It was noted that the President makes decisions about the formula for and amount of any benefits or increases. Dean said it is his impression that retiree issues are not often discussed by IFC; to some extent retiree concerns differ from those of faculty. Those present indicated a belief the Council should support the proposal to change the composition of the Committee. Schmidt advised that the issue would be placed on the agenda for the next Council meeting.

Schmidt noted that the Red Cross has proposed another faculty blood drive, for some time in July. Council members voiced their support.

Standing Committee Reports

Devaney reported that the Student Affairs Committee has been looking at campus safety. It is pleased to see that painting and other work has been done to improve the safety of sidewalks. There was a discussion about various issues relating to safety on campus, including suggestions that pedestrian warning signs should be red rather than yellow and various issues raised concerning cyclist safety. The committee is collaborating with Pednet. Schmidt pointed out that some of the roads discussed are within State, not campus, jurisdiction. It is possible some funds from the recent grant received by the City might be available to address some of this. Devaney advised that a study had been done of policies on the time for posting grades after finals. Policies on the campus range from one to five days after examinations.

There were no other committee reports.

Other Business

Schopp inquired what the Faculty Council might like to do about rumors that media relations are being consolidated into the President's office. Campbell stated the matter had not been discussed at IFC. He will inquire to learn what, if anything, is happening.

Adjournment

The meeting was adjourned at 4:20 p.m.