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Minutes for April 05, 2006


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•  Welcome

•  Pledge of Allegiance

•  Swearing in of new senators

•  Minutes - stand as approved

•  Treasurer's report - stands as approved

•  Just over $6300 was allocated this spring for scholarships.

•  There was a discrepancy in the budget amounts, but the actual current amount in the budget is $12,913.

•  Roll Call

 

Senators present: Louisa Arriaga, Jana Atkins, Gene Bals, Estella Barron, Joan Blackmon, Eric Burrell, Crystal Davis, Lori Dudley, Sheryl Epperson, Maria Fernandez, Travis Findley, Sandy Gellner, Scott Hall, Judy Hunter, Donna Hurtado, Teresa Impson, Marcia Kawecki, Michelle Kiser, Rick Loper, Guadalupe Luna, Barbara McArthur, Teresa Neal, Kathy Nordstrom, Rebecca Owens, Patti Perkins, Donna Perry, Tony Rando, Donna Rogers, Don Roulain, Ryan Scheckel, Randy Smith, Linda Stracener, Kevin Tunnell, Richard Verrone, Brenda Winn, Barbara White , Leigh Wilson

 

Senators absent: Jaclyn Byrd, Yolanda Coronado, Gerald Cunningham, Bobby Davila, Rick Fullerton, Rocky Gauna, Bill McDonald, Eddie Ramirez, David Shuping, Carol Ann Stanley

 

Guests: Mary Jane Hurst, Tai Kreidler, Gary Lindsey, T. Gilmour Reeve, Donna Walker

 

•  University President Jon Whitmore

The agenda for the President's office consists of the following:

•  Invest in people

•  enrich the educational experience

•  advance research

•  strengthen our partnerships

 

Update from the beginning of the year:

President Whitmore is committed to putting people first. The goal is to try to give raises to employees every year. The year began with a 3% merit raise. Dr. Whitmore will recommend a 2% raise to the Board of Regents for the coming year. This raise will be funded by a tuition increase.

Additional staff was added in recruitment this year. Specifically, they work in the major Texas cities: Austin, Dallas/Ft. Worth, San Antonio. Tech was originally created as a regional university, but now the biggest concentration of students come from the I-35 corridor. Enrollment projections for fall place the student population near the record level of enrollment. However, money comes from the state not based on enrollment, but based instead on the total number of credit hours students enroll in.

Other accomplishments include:

•  Adding an Ombudsman for staff

•  Approval for employees to take a course each semester at no cost.

•  Adding research support for faculty in the Humanities and the Arts

•  Combining student services in one location so students do not have to visit several buildings to take care of common academic and business matters

•  Starting a Cross-Cultural Academic Achievement Center, with employees involved with MentorTech.

The university has goals for more buildings.

•  The Human Sciences building addition is being built.

•  The Experimental Sciences building opened this year which is used for interdisciplinary research.

•  A new residence hall also opened this year for 500+students. It was full this year.

•  Outreach and Extended Studies is getting a new building near the International Cultural Center. This will replace the rented space on the south Loop.

•  Counseling and Student Health are being combined into a new building.

•  The College of Business Administration is raising $25 million in private money to match a similar amount from the state in order to build a new building.

•  The addition to the Law School will break ground early this summer.

Several different kinds of staff awards are available, but there have never been advising awards until now. The advising awards will be available for anyone who spends a considerable amount of time advising students. The first of these may be awarded this spring before the semester is over.

Graduate deans from other institutions around the country have been invited to Tech to meet with Graduate School officials and other academic departments. The university is looking for advice about developing a legislative initiative for improving graduate education (specifically funding). Two deans will be here the Thursday and Friday before Easter. There is nothing wrong with Tech's Graduate School, but neutral sources may be able to give suggestions about how to make it better.

A budget request must be prepared for the next legislative session, which starts next January. The general budget request must be submitted by August. The presidents of the Staff Senate, Faculty Senate, and Student Government Association will be involved. The process will begin with a Budget Advisory Council to discuss options and how to build a case for more money to move forward on certain agenda items as well as future building projects, etc. This council also includes staff, faculty, athletics officials, deans, the Provost, and Senior Vice President Anderes. The 2006-2007 budget will be finalized with the Board of Regents meeting in May. Once this is accomplished, it will be possible to concentrate on needs for 2007-2008.

 

•  Committee Reports

Bylaws (Michelle Kiser)

For vote:

•  Article VI. Standing Committees
Membership/Purpose
Order Change

•  Article VI. Standing Committees
A. Membership/Purpose
1. Nominations Committee

•  Article VI. Standing Committee
A. Membership/Purpose
2. Elections Committee

•  Article VI. Standing Committee
A. Membership/Purpose
3. Grievance Committee

•  Article V. Rules of order
A. Order of Business
1. Pledge of Allegiance

•  Article VI. Standing Committees
B. Organization, Powers and Duties of Standing Committees
7. "Chair of each Standing Committee"

The Executive Board recommends accepting this change

Motion made by Patti Perkins to accept change

Seconded by Michelle Kiser

No discussion

Motion carries

See Appendix A for full text showing changes

 

Motion made by Rebecca Owens to suspend the rules to read and vote on the Fall Break Resolution

 

•  New Business

Resolution on a Fall Break for students. See Appendix B for full text of the resolution.

Motion made by Kathy Nordstrom to approve resolution

Seconded by Michelle Kiser

No discussion

Motion carries

 

•  Committee Reports (continued)

•  Scholarships (Lori Dudley) All paperwork has been submitted for disbursement to the spring recipients. Thirty-two people applied and twenty scholarships were awarded. Richard Verrone and Lori Dudley will submit this information for publication in the local and campus newspapers. The committee will continue working on changes to the application and guidelines.

•  Nominations (Kathy Nordstrom) There is a vacancy on the Elections committee for a Crafts & Trade representative and another vacancy on the Grievance committee for Clerical.

•  Elections (Kathy Nordstrom) The committee met last Tuesday and revamped the nomination form. The form was printed as a pamphlet and mailed yesterday. These are self-addressed to make it easier for people to return them. One nomination has already been received and Nordstrom has received several phone calls of interest.

•  Communications and Public Relations (Randy Smith) Marlene Kenady resigned from the Staff Senate due to a change in her EEO classification. Four volunteers worked the KTXT fundraiser last month. The newsletter has been mailed. The next Welcome Event will be April 20. There may be one more this semester. The committee plans to utilize TechAnnounce more to make Staff Senate more visible.

•  Issues (Teresa Neal/Donna Perry)

•  Payroll deduction for travel savings accounts. There is a $25 penalty for non-travel-related withdrawals. The committee has decided not to pursue this further.

•  The committee spoke with Becky Hyde, Director of Student Business Services, about the new "flat rate tuition" plan. Ms. Hyde explained that it is not exactly a flat-rate tuition plan and that the new plan would not affect employee tuition waiver.

•  A routing sheet is being created to help keep track of resolutions after they're passed. A draft was submitted to the Executive Board and is currently being refined.

•  Several new issues have been received which will be discussed within the committee soon

 

•  External committees

•  Budget Advisory Council (Richard Verrone) The Budget Advisory Council meets this Friday, April 7, to look at the upcoming budget to be presented in Austin.

•  Childcare (Crystal Davis) The childcare committee will meet April 19. This is a joint committee with the Faculty Senate.

•  Academic Council (Rebecca Owens) - Academic Council met yesterday, but did not discuss matters related to staff issues.

 

•  President's Report

Richard Verrone has been involved in the town hall meeting held last month. Staff had the highest attendance at this meeting among staff, faculty, and students. A lot of feedback has been received.

Monday, met with Teryn Stowers, a junior restaurant, hotel, and institutional management major who traded places with President Whitmore for a day. In exchange, Dr. Whitmore attended her classes and parked in commuter parking. Ms. Stowers had several questions about who staff are and what kinds of jobs staff do.

Verrone is working toward a weekly contact with the SGA and Faculty Senate presidents.

Verrone received a call from Dr. Haragan acknowledging the work of the Staff Senate. Verrone invited him to a meeting, and Dr. Haragan plans to attend next month. Although Dr. Whitmore has allocated one meeting a month to the Staff Senate president, Dr. Whitmore has been more generous with his time. In the most recent meeting, Verrone discussed plans to address the Board of Regents in May to emphasize the need for annual raises and to make sure the 2% raise is approved. Dr. Haragan has received a directive to make some changes with the system. Verrone is on the Chancellor's Advisory Committee which will meet in May. He asked Dr. Whitmore about some of last year's issues, specifically telecommuting and the Flint Avenue barrier. Some procedure for follow-up is being developed.

 

•  New business (continued)

•  Gil Reeve is in charge of the Strategic Planning Council. One of the staff members on the committee is stepping down of the council and three nominations need to be submitted to replace this staff member for a 2-year term. The names are given to Dr. Whitmore, and will appoint the member.

•  Mary Jane Hurst states that twenty nominations were submitted for the advising award mentioned by Dr. Whitmore earlier. Fourteen nominations were for individuals and six were for team awards. Only two awards are given in individual category and only 1 for the team category.

•  The SGA established a scholarship drive last year to raise money for a couple of different scholarship opportunities. There are types of scholarships: merit scholarships, awarded on academic merit, and opportunity scholarships, awarded based on leadership and financial need. Verrone recommends the Staff Senate consider contributing to this fundraiser to show Staff Senate and university staff support of students by buying a brick with the Staff Senate name inscribed. The cost to place the brick is $1000. The Executive Board discussed this and is in favor of purchasing the brick. Designation of scholarship type is permissible, and the Executive Board suggests designating the donation for opportunity scholarships. Lori Dudley requested to see the full criteria for these scholarships. Verrone will research this.

 

•  Adjourn

•  Motion made by Randy Smith to adjourn

•  Seconded by Joan Blackmon

•  Motion carries


Appendix A

 

Bylaws Revisions

 

Second Reading

Revisions are underlined

 

Article VI. Standing Committees

A. Membership/Purpose

ORIGINAL ORDER

1. Bylaws & Constitution

2. Nominations

3. Elections

4. Grievance

5. Communications/Public Relations

6. Other Committees

 

REVISED ORDER

1. Nominations

2. Elections

3. Grievance

4. Bylaws & Constitution

5. Communications/Public Relations

6. Issues

7. Other Committees

 

Article VI. Standing Committees

A. Membership/Purpose

1. Nominations

ORIGINAL

The Nominations Committee shall be comprised of one member from each EEO Classification to be chosen within that category. The duties of the committee shall be to seek and recommend nominations for appointments to internal, external, and University committees, as deemed necessary according to Article V, Section 1 of the Constitution.

 

REVISED

The Nominations Committee shall be comprised of one member from each EEO classification to be chosen by a majority vote of those members present of each EEO Classification at the first regularly-scheduled meeting of each year where official business is conducted. Should no members of the EEO classification present be able to serve on the nominations committee, the president may appoint committee members from within the EEO classification.

 

Article VI. Standing Committees

A. Membership/Purpose

2. Elections

ORIGINAL

The Elections Committee shall be comprised of one member from each EEO Classification to be chosen within that category. The duties of the committee shall be to handle all nomination and election procedures as set forth in Article III, Section 1 of the Constitution.

 

REVISED

The Elections Committee shall be comprised of one member from each EEO classification to be chosen by a majority vote of those members present of each EEO Classification at the first regularly-scheduled meeting of each year where official business is conducted. Should no members of the EEO classification present be able to serve on the elections committee, the nominations committee may appoint committee members from within the EEO classification.

Article VI. Standing Committees

A. Membership/Purpose

3. Grievance

ORIGINAL

The Grievance Committee shall be comprised of one member from each EEO Classification to be chosen within that category. The duties of the committee shall be to handle Staff Senate grievances or concerns that may be expressed by any member of the Staff Senate and/or the University community according to Article IV, Section 2 of the Constitution.

 

REVISED

The Grievance Committee shall be comprised of one member from each EEO classification to be chosen by a majority vote of those members present of each EEO Classification at the first regularly-scheduled meeting of each year where official business is conducted. Should no members of the EEO classification present be able to serve on the grievance committee, the nominations committee may appoint committee members from within the EEO classification.

Article V. Rules of Order

A. Order of Business

1. Pledge of Allegiance

•  If there is a standard present and the president feels the situation is suited for saying it then the pledge should be said.

•  If there is not a standard present or the president feels the situation is not suited for saying the pledge then the pledge will not be said at the beginning of the meeting.

 

ORIGINAL

Article VI. Standing Committees

B. Organization, Powers and Duties of Standing committees

7. The Chair of each Standing Committee shall have the responsibility for the effective administration of the committee. The Chair shall record attendance at each meeting and send a report to the Secretary of the Staff Senate. If the Chair or a member of the committee has a problem with a committee member's attendance, they may go to the Executive Board.

 

REVISED

7. The Chair of each Standing Committee shall have the responsibility for the effective administration of the committee. The Chair shall record attendance at each meeting and send a report to the Secretary of the Staff Senate. If the Chair or a member of the committee has a problem with a committee member's attendance, they may submit a formal grievance in writing to the grievance committee detailing the frequency of absences and the impact on the committee. The grievance committee will then gather information and make a formal recommendation to the Executive Board.

 

 


Appendix B

 

Texas Tech University Staff Senate

2005-2006 Resolution 5

April 5, 2006

 

Stating the recommendation of the Staff Senate regarding the current written proposal for a Fall Break

 

WHEREAS, an Ad-Hoc Committee within the Staff Senate Issues Committee was formed to analyze the impact on staff of the written proposal for a student Fall Break; and

 

WHEREAS, the committee's research revealed ways in which a Fall Break as currently written would negatively impact staff; and

 

WHEREAS, these findings, along with suggested alternative solutions, were presented to Nathan Nash, President of the Texas Tech Student Government Association; and

 

WHEREAS, the Texas Tech University Staff Senate has not seen an amendment to the currently written proposal for a student Fall Break;

 

THEREFORE, be it resolved on this day, March 1, 2006, that the Texas Tech University Staff Senate , while it supports the idea of a student Fall Break , will not support the proposal as it currently stands for students to receive a Fall Break.

 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Texas Tech University Staff Senate has expressed its willingness to continue to work with the Texas Tech University Student Government Association on ways that the Staff Senate would accept the implementation of a Fall Break. These include, but are not limited to , a draft response from the SGA which contains an alternative proposal which addresses the specific issues of the TTU Staff, and the use of a more scientific mode of gathering student input regarding a Fall Break .

 

BE IT ALSO RESOLVED that a copy of this resolution be submitted to Texas Tech President Jon Whitmore, Provost William Marcy, Faculty Senate President John Howe, and to the Texas Tech Student Government Association President.