Texas Tech University

Minutes for July 8, 2009

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  • Call To Order:
    • 2008-2009 Staff Senate President, Ron Nail
    • 3:00 PM, Senate Room, Student Union Building,
  • Officers Present:
    • Ron Nail, President
    • Chris Leisinger, President Elect
    • Len Markham, Secretary
    • Tamara Ginter, Treasurer
  • Guests:
    • Dr. Guy Bailey, President Texas Tech University
    • Mary Diaz, Assoc. Vice President, External Affairs
    • Nathaniel Haddock, Staff Ombudsman
  • Welcome:
    • Ron Nail
  • Roll Call:
    • Len Markham
  • Absent:
    • Shannon Crossland, Elizabeth Massengale, Pam Tipton, Kyle Clark, Michael Glass, Kathy Smith, Virginia Downs, Heather Medley, Kar Sata, Maria Vega, Sharon Yeates, Ashley Britton, Becky Evans, Dawn Moreno, Hope Calvillo, Steve Allsup, Jerry Cowen, Brad Jury, Linda Champion, Alicia Marez, and Frances Watso
  • Guest Seaker:
    • Dr. Bailey spoke of accomplishments during the past year, his appreciation for the staff of Texas Tech University, the Senate and Ron Nail. He continued with a presentation entitled It’s Our Time: the 2009 Legislative Session. He first pointed out the good news and then the bad news from the last legislative session.
      • Good News:
      • We are in Texas—other states had budget cuts but Texas did not
      • General Academic Institutions received 7.33% increase through state funding formula
      • TTU received $4 million one-time appropriation for not raising tuition/fees in FY09.
      • Formula funding increase = $7.78 million (4%)
      • New money = $3.7 million (1.92% increase)
      • House bill 51—thanks to State Rep Branch, St. Senator Zaffirini, Duncan and Shapiro:
        • Two new competitive funds for ERUs
        • Texas Research Incentive (TRIP) – important for now. It is a matching fund for private gifts to enhance research The focus of TRIP is a state match for private gifts; we are well-positioned. If the state funds are insufficient to match eligible gifts, those gifts “roll over” to the next fiscal year.
        • Nat’l Research University Fund (NRUF) – important for future. Is a permanent, dedicated endowment to enable ERUs to achieve prominence as major research universities. Restricted research expenditures of at least $45 million for at least two years and meet four of six set criteria.
      • Bad News:
      • Compared to competitors, TTU did poorly - TTU’s funding = about ½ of the average increase for 4yr schools
      • Why we got what we got - TTU did poorly compared to UH and UTD (pay raises/ new positions depend on funding formula)
        • The Texas Formula
          Allocates funds based on weighted student credit hours (WSCH)
          Each “funding code” assigned a weight based on instructional level and discipline; for example a freshman English class is weighted less than a graduate science class.
      • Our WSCE percentage has declined over the last two years. The decline was due to:
        Stagnant enrollment growth
        Decision to reduce Law School enrollment
        Failure to maximize SCHs during summer of 2008 (before next legislative session
      • These funding differences are not the result of political decisions; each institution got what it earned.
      • More Bad News:
      • In FY 2010-11 we will see an actual decline in our funding from another source of state appropriations.
      • All of the state’s universities except for UT Austin and Texas A&M receive money from the Research Development Fund (RDF).
      • RDF appropriations are based on a 3-year average of restricted research funding. Because our proportion of the state’s restricted research funding declined, our RDF allocation will decline by $1,222,154. Our research did not keep up with our competitors.
      • Largely as a result of stagnant enrollments relative to the growth at other eligible institutions and stagnant total research expenditures, our HEAF allocation will decline by $3,510,568 per year beginning in FY 2011.
        • HEAF allocations are based on three factors: (1) complexity [i.e., formula funding], (2) space deficit—a factor of number of students and research expenditures, (3) replacement value of facilities at 2%.
        • HEAF is our primary source for facilities and start-up packages. A decline in this revenue source will make faculty hiring and the construction of new facilities more difficult.
      • Some Implications (here is the point):
      • A continued decline in WSCH production and restricted research funding will lead to very serious problems for us.
      • First, our formula funding and our RDF funding will continue to decline relative to our competitors.
      • Second, our salaries will continue to decline relative to the rest of the state (we have already fallen from 4th to 8th)
      • Third, we will be poorly positioned to take advantage of new opportunities for emerging research universities.
      • What Can We Do:
      • Good news, we are in control of our own destiny
      • It doesn’t have to be this way—our fate is in our own hands
      • To improve TTU funding:
        Increase our weighted student credit hour production
        Increase our restricted research expenditures
      • Window of Time: by Summer 2010 (next legislature evaluation of SCH).
      • Plan for increasing our WSCHs
      • Rapidly increase our graduate enrollment, especially at the doctoral level and in science and engineering
        2 million for 80 doctoral fellowships in FY09
        Double support for 160 new doctoral students in FY10
      • Rapidly increase the number of transfer students, focusing on Phi Theta Kappa (jr/community college honor society members).
        $1 million allocated in scholarship funding this spring
        Anticipate doubling our funding for FY10
      • Redouble our efforts to recruit high quality freshman
        Major recruiting events in Houston, Austin, and Dallas (around TTU football games in that area)
        Rapid response to applicants
      • Make appropriate changes in recruiting to recognize the changing demographics of Texas
        Partnerships in the Rio Grande Valley
      • Improve retention and graduation rates
      • Create a new incentive-based budget model
      • Plan for increasing restricted research expenditures
      • New doctorial fellowships support the expansion of research. Areas that can generate additional research funding have received priority for fellowships.
      • Target faculty recruitment for researchers who bring research money with them.
      • Emphasize endowed chairs for leaders of research teams that generate substantial competitive funding and can bring their teams with them.
      • Conclusion: It’s our time
      • Texas Tech University has a unique opportunity to become Texas’ next national research university.
      • Current trends in the institution, however, have us moving in the wrong direction.
      • To achieve national research status, we must enhance both our WSCh production and our restricted research.
      • We must do this immediately, and we need the involvement of everyone on campus to be successful.
  • Recognition:
    • Ron Nail recognized 2008-2009 officers and Staff Senators and handed out certificates of appreciation.
  • Outgoing Senators:
    • Ron Nail, Sammy Arguello, Melanie Chaffin-Poeling, Michael Gellner, Kay Hill, Maria Vega, Sharon Yeates, Steve Allsup, Jerry Cowen, Jessica Carrillo, Mary Elkins, Michael Glass, Marlene Kenady, Janet Veal, Brad Jury, Mary Harris, Marci Beasley, and Greta Cullers.
  • Remarks:
    • Ron Nail, President 2008-2009 Staff Senate
      • Ron thanked the senate for his time as President thanked the senate for allowing him to serve.
    • Chris Leisinger presented a gift to Ron from the senate, thanking him for his service.
  • Induction-Officers:
    • President Ron Nail swore in the new officers.
      President – Chris Leisinger
      President Elect – Beverly Pinson
      Treasurer – Tamara Ginter
      Secretary – Sandy Gellner
  • Induction-Senators:
    • President Chris Leisinger swore in the new senators.
      New Senators 2009-2012:
      • Dale Ganus - EEO Administrative/Management
        Glenna Andrews - EEO Clerical
        Connie Brown - EEO Clerical
        Meredith Gooch - EEO Clerical
        Debbie Holt - EEO Clerical
        Kathy Schuessler - EEO Clerical
        Tina Vecchio - EEO Clerical
        Sam Beavers - EEO Crafts and Trade
        Bruce Bills - EEO Professional
        Kim Eggleston - EEO Professional
        Ray Perez - EEO Professional
        Aleesa Ross - EEO Professional
        Britta Tye - EEO Professional
        Ashley McPherson – EEO Technical
        Pam Smith – EEO Technica
  • Adjournment to participate in reception provided by the President's Office.


TTU Staff Senate