Staff Council (“SC”)
November 15, 2006
Action Items Completed…
ü The SC minutes of October 18, 2006 were unanimously approved and entered into record. These minutes are available online.
Information Items Presented…
o SC President Susan Martin—whom the SC would like to warmly welcome back after her recent medical leave—reported the following:
The SC Executive
Committee would like to thank long-time member, chair, and web coordinator
§ SC officers learned of another departure after the meeting and would like to thank long-time member, chair, and 2nd Vice President Delana Gifford for her invaluable contribution to the SC. Among her accomplishments are the reinvention and revitalization of SC Awareness Month as well as dozens of vacancies filled. Time constraints and family commitments require that Gifford take a break from the Council. She will be missed!
§ The SC Executive Committee would also like to recognize Representative Heather Kemp for her outstanding work on behalf of the Staff Affairs Committee. Kemp has compiled a valuable knowledge base of issues explored by the committee in recent years and was also responsible for organizing constituent feedback on campus food services into a concise, informative report.
§ Welcome to Representative Jennifer Fleming, who attended her first meeting in November.
§ Please urge your colleagues to share their good news: the SC “Applause Page” is always seeking announcements regarding staff members’ professional transitions within the university or community awards or honors. Contact the SC Office for details.
o SC Committee Chairs then made the following reports:
Prior to the meeting, the SC shared feedback, negative and positive, on food service on campus via a report compiled by the Staff Affairs Committee. Clemons noted that he had carefully read the feedback and promised a written response to the comments in December 2006. He did respond, however, to some initial questions posed by the Council:
§ Q: Are the catering services, processes, and terms set?
§ A: No, they will be up for review in the coming months and are subject to change.
Q: Once the
A: The food courts in
§ Q: What is the nature of Chartwell’s contract with the campus?
A: A new contract is
being drafted and will soon be signed.
The term is for seven years with an option to renew and, as recent
contracts with Chartwell’s, was developed in the interest of necessary
investments for the
§ Q: Does the talk of possibly outsourcing IU Bookstores have any connection or bear any similarities to negotiations with Chartwell’s (re: the need for investment on campus)?
§ A: No. President Herbert has mentioned the possibility of exploring bookstore outsourcing; unlike dining, it would be a university—as opposed to campus—decision.
§ Q: What is the status of vending (Canteen and Coca-Cola) contracts on campus?
§ A: Canteen is managed by Chartwell’s and is, therefore, governed by its contract. The contract with Coca-Cola was negotiated at the university—not campus—level and has recently been renewed.
In closing, the SC thanked Clemons for his time and he thanked the Council for engaging in these important conversations. Staff Affairs Co-Chair Becky Thacker reminded Clemons that staff spend a great deal of time on campus and that nutrition, access (including class and workday-friendly hours), and affordability must be among Chartwell’s chief priorities as they move forward. Representative Leslie Kidwell closed by noting that, while she appreciates Clemons’ time, the extension of Chartwell’s contract may be initially viewed with skepticism, as many staff view Chartwell’s past performance as inconsistent. More information on campus dining is available online.
§ Research III, among the most expensive single building projects in IU history, is slated to begin construction in 2008.
§ A January 2007 opening is planned for the Medical Information Sciences Building at the head of the Canal. Representative Chris Walthers raised concerns about the lack of on-site parking and the reliability of the PeopleMover for staff at the new building; the Staff Affairs Committee will follow-up to express their concerns in more depth.
§ Increased classroom space on campus will likely become the chief priority in the 2009-2011 budget year.
§ Research IV is also likely to be proposed in the near future.
§ The university has submitted its budget request. The request will now undergo review by the Commission on Higher Education and Governor, respectively, who will then issue their recommendations. The upcoming legislative session is a “long session,” meaning the budget is being set for the biennium. Among the highlights of the proposed budget: maintenance dollars and funding for the Life Science Initiative. When asked by Representative Lester Cook about possible reductions in force in said budget proposal, Martin noted that reductions are not planned and will be avoided if possible, but reminded the SC that state appropriations continue to diminish, meaning that the university is more reliant on revenue with each passing year. Amidst social concerns about raising tuition, it can be tricky to strike a balance.
asked by Representative
Alicia Gahimer if Counseling & Psychological Services (“CAPS”)
would move, if not to the
responded to questions about campus expansion by theorizing that “North Campus”
(the area by
§ In response to questions about the potential future use of the Board of Health Building and LaRue Carter Hospital, Martin noted that eventual demolition was planned when the properties were reacquired from the state but that the funding to pursue demolition (nearly $10 million) was not available at this time.
§ Thank you to Chartwell’s for attending today’s meeting and recognizing that quality of life issues such as food services do affect productivity.
§ She is currently serving on Dean Sukhatme’s Academic Plan’s Process Review Team, a committee that will explore ways to review and streamline day-to-day business processes (billing, HR-related tasks, etc.). She encouraged SC members to offer their feedback: "How can we do things better?"
§ Thank you for all of the support and assistance provided by staff as the campus has transitioned to a tobacco-free environment. As weather turns colder, she notes, non-compliance may spike. Information cards explaining the campus policy and available resources for smoking cessation are available from HRA. If you are approaching a smoker for the first time, please simply explain the policy and politely ask that the person to extinguish their cigarette. If you notice someone with a pattern of non-compliance, it is perfectly acceptable to ask for their name and contact their unit of employment or--in the case of a student you see daily but who may not provide a name—to alert the Dean of Students Office.
As always, information and registration forms for professional and personal development workshops can be found online at http://www.hra.iupui.edu/signup.asp.
o Academic Designee Paul Galanti could not attend but, as always, updates on the activities of the IUPUI Faculty Council are available by clicking here.
o SC President Martin led the SC through Campus Committee Reports and items of New Business:
Representative Gary Curto suggested that the SC explore proactive steps it can take in response to concerns, including, perhaps, diversity and sensitivity training. Meeting guest Dan Maxwell urged SC members to engage students and colleagues on this issue as open discourse will be vital to moving forward. President Susan Martin noted that this is a critically important issue that will require further discussion by the Council. The SC is also exploring the option of connecting on a monthly basis with fellow staff organizations like the Black Faculty & Staff Council, which has some overlapping membership with the SC and IUPUI Faculty Council. Feedback and comments should be submitted via the “Hot Topics” form on the SC website.
o SC President Martin adjourned the meeting at 5:05pm.
THE NEXT MEETING OF THE STAFF COUNCIL WILL BE HELD ON WEDNESDAY DECEMBER 6, 2006 FROM
3:00-5:00pm @ THE