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Academic Affairs and Faculty Quality (ASH 208)
Health Affairs (ASH 202)
Governance (ASH 208)The University of Texas System Faculty Advisory Council
Ashbel Smith Hall, 200 West 7th Street, 2nd Floor
Austin, Texas
April 28, 2011    10:00 am – 5:00 pm
April 29, 2011     9:00 am – 2:00 pm  

Attendance
April 28, 2011

Dan Formanowicz, President (UT Arlington); Bobbette M. Morgan, Secretary (UT Brownsville); Murray Leaf (UT Dallas); Amy Jasperson (UT San Antonio);  
See sign-in sheets.

Review of the Minutes
March 24-25, 2011

Minutes from March 24 and March 25, 2011 were presented.  Murray Leaf made a motion to accept the minutes and Tim Allen seconded the motion. The motion passed on Thursday, April 28, 2011.

Agenda/Issue 1 Announcements

Dan Formanowicz, our President, discussed the agenda and recent developments that will be addressed over the next two days.

Agenda/Issue 2.
Laura Chambers, Director of Employee Benefits

The projected increase is projected at 9%, but it may be only 7% depending on the legislature.
Her office has reviewed 375 bills that affect benefits. Ninety eight thousand individuals are covered by the UT System plans.
The self-funded insurance program allows flexibility in terms of where the increases occur. Because of the short notice and short timeline to enroll the survey of employees will be used from last year.
This is the last year to have $5000 in the Flex-Plan. Next year it will be a maximum of $2500.
Dependents can be up to 26 years old and married and be covered under their parents policies.
The Voluntary Retirement Program has 875 funds to choose from. A UT System Actuary oversees performance. They are working to reduce the funds to 250 choices. You can keep money in the funds but won’t be able to add new money to those no longer on the list.
There is no plan to provide for improved retirement rates. The 10% could come from them. Retirees are being considered. There will be no changes for the next two years.
Furloughs have been discussed. Right now they cannot be done.

Agenda/Issue 3.
David Prior, Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, Pedro Reyes, Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Planning and Assessment, Dale Klein, Associate Vice Chancellor for Research

Dr. Prior thanked Dan F. for his service to the UT System over the last two years. Criminal Record Checks, Financial Exigency, and Conflict of Interest have been major issues. Dan was presented with a gavel for his service.
Visits to the campuses have gone well. Regents Hicks and Stillwell have been attending also. There was no whining—people are focused on students and moving ahead in spite of the budget cuts proposed by the legislature.
The handgun bill is slowed down, Sen. Zafarrini has said she will pull the bill if the handgun flier is attached.
Public information has been requested by the Texas Tribune, Texas Public Policy Foundation, and others. It will be released tomorrow with the caveat that it is draft and not completely analyzed. Pedro Reyes is now working to help generate information for the regents. Names, base salaries, benefits, and number of courses taught will be released.
We will review the data released and provide input. We should minimize the value of the data. The value of scholarship and research is what needs to be emphasized. The OP/ED piece by Peter O’Donnell this week was very well done.
The Task Forces requested by the Board of Regents were to report out by May 15, 2011.  It looks like this is unlikely. The Productivity Task Force is meandering around a bit, but will be meeting again next week.
Fundamentally universities are about research and teaching. What we learn we share with our students.
THECB has proposed a $10,000 bachelor’s degree. They are proposing a way to accomplish this.

Agenda/Issue 4.
Bryan Allison, Executive Director of Technology---Commercialization and Advisory Services

 

A timeline of the UT System Administration Modifications was presented. Bryan Allison came from Ohio State. He started here in January and has visited all campuses but Permian Basin.
Their office hosted a symposium in January with 130 participants from across the state.
The symposium brought forth help in identifying early stage capital, connections with investors, develop better understanding of “how to work with” UT System would improve technology commercialization, and create a public search engine of capabilities and assets.
UT System has the best royalty split of any higher education institutions in the United States.
License bundling would provide reduces costs to multiple institutions.
Top Tier Agenda for 2011:
Intellectual property scorecard.
Make available resources to help position UT System as “open and ready” to do business.

Agenda/Issue 5.
Committee Meetings

Academic Affairs and Faculty Quality (ASH 208)
Health Affairs (ASH 202)
Governance (ASH 208)

Agenda/Issue 6.
Campus Reports

Dan Formanowitz and Murray Leaf, Murray, Tim met with Chancellor Cigarroa, Executive Vice Chancellor David Prior, Pedro Reyes, Dan Sharphorn and Barry Bergdorf about Post Tenure Review and on-going faculty evaluation. A template will be drafted for us to discuss.

Agenda/Issue 7.
Friday, April 29, 2011

Nominations for Chair-Elect:
Janet Steiger, Murray Leaf, James Eldridge
Vote Results: Murray Leaf will be Chair-Elect
Nominations for Secretary:
Elizabeth Heise, Ed Jackson
Vote Results: Elizabeth Heise
Academic Affairs and Faculty Quality (ASH 208)
Health Affairs (ASH 202)
Governance (ASH 208)

Agenda/Issue 8
Committee Reports

Academic Affairs and Faculty Quality: We have continued to work on Best practices and have put together a cover letter and encourage each institution to review the ideas with their faculty.
David Cordell and Carola Wenk will serve as Co-Chairs of this committee for next year.
Health Affairs: A resolution in support of increased numbers of residencies was developed by the committee and supported by the UT FAC membership:
INSERT RESOLUTION HERE
Governance: Two recommendations and one resolution were presented. Send links on workload policy to Murray Leaf. Also send any information on Post Tenure Review. These will be added to the electronic binders for our use.
A resolution in support of the UT System leadership was developed by the committee and supported by the UT FAC membership:
INSERT RESOLUTION HERE
Amy Jasperson and Ed Jackson will serve as co-chairs of the Governance Committee for next year.
The letter drafted by Dan, Tim, Murray, and Mansour and modified by the
UT System FAC membership will be sent to the Regents. INSERT RESOLUTION HERE
INSERT RESOLUTION HERE
Bobbette Morgan and Elizabeth Heise reported out on events at UTB/TSC.

Agenda/Issue 9.
Steve Collins, Associate Vice Chancellor for Governmental Relations and Special Counsel

Following the Elephants in the Parade---
Believe everything you read.
Appropriations Bill, HB 1, passed the House now has been sent to the Senate. Twenty one votes have not been collected in order to discuss the bill in the senate. Sen. Ogden is trying to get 21 votes for discussion. The gap between the two bills is unusual. House: 23 billion less than current budget—the Senate version is about $12 billion less, but is considered a “hot check”. The “hot check” is our best option. More money for nursing, special items for higher education, more for medical institutions, hold harmless—no institution would lose more than 15%.
The rainy day fund may be tapped again for another 3 billion. Governor Perry says no. Sen. Ogden is the only statesman.
The budget will go into the summer. Probably around July 5, 2011. A one year budget could be certifiable, but not the best way to go about this.
The biggest priority is hanging on to what we got. It isn’t going to happen. Health insurance at UTB is bollixed up. We have to work on this in conference.
Institutions are working on defining the mechanism to draw tobacco funds. It may die on its own lack of merit.
Trying to reconcile the budget for this year is still under way. The THECB will be receiving back ARRA grant money—federal stimulus funds. Institutions must send it or lose it.
Democracy is what we get that the majority deserves.
We are not different from what is happening nationwide.
Senate bill 272, Tuition revenue bonds isn’t moving. The Board of Regents can do something independent of the legislature.
Tuition hasn’t been discussed much during this session. Almost no political pushback.
UTB won’t be receiving a TRB, but the System is looking into leasing space.
Gun bill, open carry, may get out of the house---but no support in the senate. There is a major bill (Zaferini) and Wentworth wanted to add the concealed handgun flier. Zaferini pulled the bill down. The whole thing may die. The UT Presidents are ready to let the bill die.
There is a bill that will change the Texas Grant---may pass.
Emerging research universities-probably will not any money this year. University of Houston is stopping the movement. Houston and Dallas could receive funds if someone blinks.
Telecommunications discount---ATT reduced costs.
Outcomes based funding—THECB—works to redistribute money within the formula. Probably won’t pass this time.
Bill to eliminate longevity pay—affect staff and health institutions. Currently it is frozen. This probably won’t pass.
Senate Bill 5: smokers pay higher co-pays.
A bill on furloughs will probably pass. It is viewed as a tool in the tool box for administrators to balance the local budget.
Pray for the legislature!

Agenda/Issue 10.
Sandra Woodley, Vice Chancellor for Strategic Initiatives

Sandra brought us each a copy of Research Briefs. Graduation rates, Productivity and Efficiency, and Faculty Work are the topics.
Taskforces are to complete their work by the end of July. Originally the date was May 15, 2011.
Recommendations will go forward to academic affairs at the end of summer. Input can be provided and then it will go to the Regents in early fall.
Degrees, benchmarks, and longitudinal data can be used to develop institutional profiles. The cost per degree and kind of degree could then be provided.
The UTB data is bad and you aren’t. Lots of things are going on there.

Agenda/Issue 11.

 

Adjournment

Dan F. adjourned the meeting at 1:00 pm.

FAC Executive Committee Meeting

Dan will be in touch with the Exec. Committee as he works on the 15 minute presentation to the Board of Regents for the August Board of Regents Meeting. If research, tenure, and post tenure issues are still a concern those will be the issues. Topics will be adjusted as needed.
The telecampus consortium is looking at on-line courses. Faculty get on-line hours or contact hours, but the currently isn’t a way of counting something in between. Policy needs to be developed—it may be a recommendation from the Taskforce.
A discussion about the data being released by the UT System and how it will be treated by outside entities occurred. The data and the electronic binders are public information.
We need to be ready to respond to how the data may be interpreted. A response needs to come quickly. We must provide information to clarify issues. Some people want to help us. Refer faculty to speak with Dan F. if contacted by reporters or agencies.  
Opinion pieces could be written to highlight higher education.  Dick Armey supports the TPPF. There is another group, Friends of Gov. Perry is also out.
Pedro Reyes and Dan Sharphorn will be putting together a “strawman” on post-tenure.
Three two-day meetings will be held next year for the FAC. An Executive Board meeting will be held prior to the Fall meeting.
Executive Board meeting was adjourned at 2:00 pm.

 
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