University Committee Meeting Minutes 2017-12-18
Minutes approved 1/08/2018
Approved Minutes for December 18, 2017 Minutes approved with changes January 8, 2018
UC members present: Amasino, Bowers (arrived 1:06), Litovsky (arrived 1:13), Ventura, Wanner (chair), Warfield
Others present: S. Smith, A. Cool (UW-Ext), J. O’Meara, A. Kulwiec (UW-Ext), H. Daniels, J. Smith, C. Springer, M. Mayrl
Chair Anja Wanner called the meeting to order at 1:03 p.m. and directed attention to a memo concerning the establishment of an ad hoc governance committee for Cooperative Extension’s transition to UW-Madison. General support. Terry Warfield provided a brief report on the monthly System fac reps meeting. The minutes of the meeting of December 11, 2017, approved with amendments. Jack O’Meara reported that the big action for PROFS at this point is at the federal level, including the imminent tax changes (from which graduate student stipend taxation has been removed) and potential changes to HEA, among other items.
Cooperative Extension faculty members Michael Ballweg and Elmo Rawling, along with Extension Secretary of Faculty and Staff Andrea Cool and School for Workers faculty member Alexia Kulwiec discussed the Extension-Madison merger. Ballweg presented current thinking on the topic from Extension perspective. Ample discussion ensued, focusing primarily on tenure, which differs between the two institutions primarily with regards to research, as well as PTR, scholarly expectations, academic staff, and other related matters. Advisory group on governance seen as especially important. Spin off groups of that one could work on specific issues, but the larger group is needed to identify issues.
Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration Laurent Heller focused on taxes and audits. Full implications of the federal tax plan not yet known and some of the worst items have been removed, but there are still items of significant concern to the university, including impacts on charitable giving, changes to taxation of certain salaries and benefits (such as Olin House), and changes to tax-exempt financing. Perhaps of greatest concern is the long-term implication of a sharp increase to deficit and what that could mean to programmatic cuts over time. Discussion followed. Heller concluded by reporting on the LAB/external audits. Audit of philanthropic side to come out in early 2018 and, while no problems are expected to be uncovered, the framing is likely to set the stage for further audits. Campus has an RFP out to find an outside accounting firm to do the UW System financial statement audit, the first systemwide audit we’ve ever undergone.
Provost Sarah Mangelsdorf reported that she and the VCRGE met with the cluster hire advisory committee earlier in the day. Will be some hard decisions to make on this call and another will come out early 2018. Discussion. UC asked Mangelsdorf why nobody from the current ITC is on the CIO search and screen committee. Following discussion, Mangelsdorf indicated she will make sure there is at least one current member. Mangelsdorf is working with University Communications on a notification to all faculty about the Act 59-required teaching-load reporting that will go live in January. Discussion about messaging, possible conflation by students and employees of campus and System administration, inter-campus communications, and the possibility of a working group to look at how peers are characterizing faculty workload in all its richness. Secretary Steve Smith asked about tenure clock extensions for childbirth at the end of the 6th clock year. Discussion.
Chancellor Rebecca Blank reported on a fun commencement. About 1100 of the 2500 graduating students were there. Blank also reported on a new gift from the Morgridges that will be used for need-based scholarships and faculty matches for fellowships, retentions, chairships. She also reported that the VCSA search committee is complete, with interviews expected in early spring and campus visits while students are still here, and on several events (diversity “thank you” event at Union, Holiday Party in new Union ballroom, Orange Bowl). Blank’s time concluded with a discussion of Extension merger, including other parts beyond Coop, governance advisory board, mixed messaging about tenure, and campus integration.
Steve Ventura moved to convene in closed session pursuant to Wis. Stats. 19.85(1)(c) and (f) to discuss personnel matters. The motion was seconded and passed at 2:48 p.m. The UC considered faculty members for the Protest Oversight Group and for the restructuring/merger governance advisory group. Terry Warfield moved to reconvene in open session to adjourn. The motion was seconded and passed at 3:21 p.m. Wanner adjourned immediately.