Staff Senate Minutes - April 20, 1999
Employee of the Month: Connie Fie, Secretary in the Department of Economics.
Present: Dave Bargen, Dennis Choplin, Dee Ellingson, Shelly Fleck, Carol Hines, John Lakey, Kathy Livingston, Tim McMullen, Mike Miller, and Bonnie Mumm. Arriving later in the meeting was Sue Petersen.
Absent: Steve Robinson and Jane Sheldon.
Guest: Cheryl Bressington
- Call to Order
- Adoption of Amended Agenda (Bargen/Hines).
- Minutes were approved as printed.
- Unfinished Business None.
- Committee and Search Reports.
- Cheryl Bressington (ex officio member) reported on the U-Wide Benefits Committee meeting she attended. UNK voting members of the committee are Mary Tiedeman, Renee Besse, and Alan Jenkins.
The U-Wide Committee did vote to issue requests for proposals on long term care (nursing home insurance) and also proposals for vision care. The vision care would be similar to the prescriptions. There would be a co-pay for eyeglasses and contacts. This would not cover laser surgery or radial keratotomy. The insurance companies are not putting forth policies that include that.
The committee had a request from Metropolitan Life to add them as an investment option for the retirement plan. That request was denied.
One of the wish list items that came from Staff Senate, was to increase life insurance amounts for employees. There was tentative approval of that. Now it will have to go through Nuflex. If it is approved, it would go into affect January 1, 2000 and add coverage up to $500,000.
Lakey asked if they discussed sick leave usage, beyond five days, for a dependent crisis situation. Bressington said they didn't so she will mention that at the next meeting.
The other item discussed was adjusting the basic retirement plan so that people, age 25 (instead of 26) with two years of service, would be given an opportunity to start participation. Another change is in the month you reach age 25, you are eligible to enroll. You don't have to wait until the July 1 date. If a person is eligible and chooses not to participate, they will not be eligible again until they reach age 30 when it becomes mandatory. This is an IRS regulation for the university's retirement plan.
Livingston mentioned there had been some discussion that there might be an increase in the percentage the university would contribute. Faculty had been pushing for this, but one group can't benefit more than another. It was tabled and may come back again at the June meeting. Another item discussed was for the university to pay part of the employee's long term disability insurance.
At a prior meeting, the University of Nebraska Health Promotion Committee had presented a proposal to establish a wellness program for employees, which would be funded by the Group Health Trust Fund. That proposal is being refined and will come back to the committee.
A question was raised about attendance of the UNK representatives. Bressington noted that if individuals are not able to attend these meetings, they might want to step down and let someone else attend. The other campuses are very vocal about what they want in the benefit package and those decisions affect UNK. Representatives are selected by the Chancellor. Lakey noted, with the exception of the faculty representative, he would like to see Staff Senate send names to the Chancellor.
- Executive Committee
Mumm informed the Senate of the items discussed when the Executive Committee met with the Chancellor. Agenda items were: 1) The visit to UNL campus concerning Staff Senate 2) Staff Senate representation on committees 3) Morale (Senate's efforts include employee of the month, recognition certificates, service award letters, staff recognition fund) 4) The evaluation process 5) Employee orientation 6) Class compensation and pay equity issues 7) Celebrating Excellence (retirement & service luncheon) 8) Chancellor Breakfasts (The Chancellor asked for invitation lists) 9) Budget cuts (Chancellor explained they are budget reallocations (not cuts) for the next four years) 10) Salary inequities and if UNK will reach market and peer midpoints (The Chancellor noted she had taken a letter to the President's Council the week before. U-Wide studies had been done, but the Council didn't agree with the results or think they are sufficient. They will study it again.)
Lakey commented that when the university put together a budget request for the state legislature, they used the percent that U-Wide was off the average. UNK feels that since they included our difference from market to come up with that average, and we are farther from market than the other campuses especially in the area of staff, we should receive a greater percentage of the money in that area. It was not accomplished this year, but UNK will continue to put this before them.
The Chancellor was asked for financial support for a Hub ad on the employee of the month and also for the July staff recognition event. The Chancellor said there was no money available at this time.
The Executive Committee will try to meet with the Chancellor again in a couple months.
- Procedures Committee
McMullen reported on the meeting held Monday. Bressington attended that meeting also and brought the committee up-to-date on new policies not currently in the employee handbook. Work is continuing on new handbooks.
McMullen presented Senate members with two recommendations from the committee for changes to the by-laws. The first is how officers are elected. The revised wording is as follows:
Officers are elected for one-year terms by Senate members as the last item of business at the October meeting. Newly elected Senate members are asked to attend the meeting and participate in the election. Members whose terms are expiring will not be allowed to vote in the election. New officers will assume their duties effective November 1 through October 31, concurrent with the Senate year. The Director of Human Resources will conduct the election, with nominations being accepted from the floor. Election will be by secret ballot; a simple majority of the votes will elect. It is suggested that the President have served at least one year on the Senate.
Livingston suggested for newly elected members it read they participate only in the election. Lakey asked if there was the required two-thirds present to vote for a change in the by-laws. That requirement met, Mumm called the question. Livingston moved that the revision for the election of officers in the Staff Senate By-laws be approved as noted. Bargen seconded the motion which was unanimous.
The second recommended change to the by-laws was the addition of election of members to serve on the Professional Conduct Committee. That wording is as follows: The Professional Conduct Committee consists of the President-Elect of the Faculty Senate, two administrative and /or managerial/professional staff representatives elected by the Staff Senate, one tenured faculty representative from and elected by each undergraduate college, and one tenured representative from and elected by the Faculty Senate. The two Staff Senate representatives are elected for one-year terms by the full Staff Senate at the regular November meeting. Only other administrator and/or managerial/professional staff may be elected. Terms of representation run from the conclusion of the election to the following election. The Director of Human Resources will conduct the election, with nominations being accepted from the floor. Election will be by secret ballot; a simple majority of the votes will elect.
Livingston suggested that the two representatives be elected in December, rather than November, so that their term would run the same as Faculty Senate representatives. Livingston provided some background. In the university by-laws, they talk about the Professional Conduct Committee in conjunction with the Faculty. But in there, it also states that this Professional Conduct Committee would also apply to administrative and managerial/professional. In the past, the Chancellor appointed one individual to represent this group. Staff Senate requested that Faculty Senate change their by-laws to allow Staff Senate to elect two representatives. Office/service is not governed by this committee; that is why the elected representatives would come from just administrative and managerial/professional staff members, but would be elected by the full Staff Senate.
Livingston made a motion to modify the recommendation so that representatives would be elected in December with their terms to begin January 1. McMullen seconded the motion, which was unanimous.
Livingston then moved to adopt the revised addition to the Staff Senate by-laws concerning the election of representatives to the Professional Conduct Committee. Bargen seconded the motion, which was unanimous.
Ellingson asked if they wanted to elect representatives now to serve until December. It was decided to place that on the May agenda.
- Employee Recognition
Hines showed members the new yearly plaque for pictures of the employee of the month. Choplin passed out individually wrapped lifesavers with labels to attach which say "You are a lifesaver for UNK. Thanks for doing a great job." The idea is to carry some with you and when you see someone doing a good job/deed to give him or her one. This includes students, staff and faculty.
- Performance Management
Ellingson stated at the April 14th meeting, the committee was given two handouts by Lakey. The first was the final version of the NU Values Competencies. The second handout was reviewed for the first time; it was the first draft of NU Values - Job Family Titles. There are 18 job families. Within each job family there could be different job behavior indicators. Each job indicator category will have a minimum and maximum salary range and every job on the university campuses needs to fit within some job family. Anticipated implementation would be July of 2000.
Lakey informed the Senate that the 18 job families have been divided among the four campuses. UNK has been given three families. Those include Administrative Support, Maintenance Operations, and Business Operations. Now eight to ten people per family need to be assigned to a committee to establish the behavior indicators for that family. Lakey and Bressington, along with university consultants, will meet with each committee and provide instruction as to how to accomplish this. Then all university campuses will get-to-gether and fine tune the results.
When complete, every job within the family will have a behavior description which will place it in a slot at a certain pay level. Then supervisors in each department should be able to use it to classify their people.
Lakey noted this needs to be completed within the next six to eight weeks. The first step is how to select the 8-10 people for each of the three families. Those persons will have to make a commitment to attend all meetings, which could include as many as 20 hours of work. So there needs to be a commitment by the supervisors to allow time away from the job. Lakey noted that the Performance Management committee would probably be asked to help with this process.
- Technology Advisory Committee
Livingston noted the group is going to be reorganized. They are changing the composition of the group since several other campus committees have been eliminated. Several items that have come before the group include 1) A brochure, which will go out to all prospective students informing them that residence halls are wired for computers. 2) A survey of all faculty regarding their use of technology in the classroom (Results will determine where support is needed and what kind of support.) 3) Establishing a process whereby people on campus can apply for Student Technology Fee monies. Right now the committee is focusing on wiring, as well as the general labs.
- Wellness Committee
Fleck announced that the Well Workplace Luncheon, at which UNK will receive the Gold Award, would be May 13 beginning at noon in the Ponderosa Room. Lakey noted the luncheon is for the whole Kearney community. Fleck asked if anyone is interested in attending the luncheon to please contact her. Other upcoming events include 1) Walk Out On Your Job, which is May 19th. Snyder is hoping for 200 UNK employees to participate. They would walk from the campus to the Kearney Clinic, then participate in that walk before walking back to UNK. 2) April 21st at 7:30 p.m. is the Safety Walk around campus with Bill Davis. 3) The City Olympics is in June and Snyder is hoping to form a team from UNK. 4) The MS Walk is this weekend.
Lakey announced that Kate Snyder would be leaving UNK to complete her doctorate at Kansas State. She will be hard to replace. Earlier in the month, Snyder was presented with a certificate of recognition from the Senate for all her hard work. Lakey also informed the Senate that the Deans provided the Wellness Program funding this year. They have tentatively agreed to do that one more year. Lakey was concerned that with all the reallocations, this might get cut.
- New Business
Mumm announced that VC Randy Haack had planned to be here to discuss salaries, but he had to go to Lincoln. So Lakey was taking his place. Lakey gave each member a packet of information which shows how salaries are going to be allocated. This process was pushed up this year since there was a need to get the new salaries into the system before converting to the ASP. First the President's Council approves these figures. Then budget officers receive the guidelines and the Chancellor and Vice Chancellors set additional guidelines for each specific campus. Budget worksheets from the budget office will be distributed on April 30th to the Chancellor/VC's who in turn will distribute them to the departments. This is where salary increases are recommended. Chancellor Johnston must provide the final approval for the UNK Campus. The Budget Office then has to put salaries on line this year by June 1.
Lakey noted the Board of Regents' policy does require annual evaluation of performance of university employees to be used in determining salary adjustments. Requirements are 1)Office/service employees must have a current year performance evaluation on file in Human Resources. 2)Managerial/professional employees must have either a performance evaluation on file in Human Resources or a letter from the supervisor stating he/she has a current evaluation on file. 3)Human Resources must have on file a list from the vice chancellor that provides the name of each director in their division that has had an annual evaluation of performance completed.
Guidelines for 1999 salaries are: 1)Faculty increases are based on the collective bargaining agreement. Graduate assistants have a 3.8% salary pool established ($4,870 for 1999-00 academic year). 2)Administrative salaries and administrative stipends have a 4.625% salary pool established to be distributed entirely on the basis of performance and market factors. (1999-2000 Department Chair Stipend $2,535 AY and $507 summer). 3)Managerial/ professional staff have a 4.75% salary pool for distribution based upon performance and consistent with university guidelines. Three percent will be based on satisfactory service and the remainder of the pool will be used as a reward for performance and to address market factors. Guidelines for minimum and maximum salary ranges must be observed. 4)Office and service employees have a 4.75% salary pool established for distribution based upon performance and consistent with university guidelines. Individuals with satisfactory service will receive a 3% increase of base salary. The remainder of the salary pool will be used as a reward for performance and to address market factors. Guidelines for minimum and maximum salary ranges must be observed. 5)The Chancellor must approve all salary increases that exceed 10%.
The Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs will notify individual faculty of their salary. The Human Resources office will distribute salary notifications to personnel other than faculty. That information will go to the appropriate vice chancellor and then be distributed on down to the directors and supervisors. The supervisors will then notify employees. One of the things that has to be worked on from last year is that not all supervisors were informed as to what each employee was receiving. Additional information in the report showed the overall salary guidelines for all campuses. Except for faculty, salary percent increases were the same. Lakey said he felt UNK should be receiving a larger percentage for staff employees to get them in line with the other campuses.
Lakey mentioned salary guidelines were established and sent out before the Legislature has appropriated the funds. This has not been done in previous years. If the anticipated funds are not allocated, this could change everything. Members were reminded this information was being provided to the Senate, but public release needs to come from the appropriate officials.
- Summer Hours
Lakey stated offices have to be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Employee hours can be staggered as long as these hours are covered.
- Summer Activity
Due to the lateness of the hour, several agenda items were postponed till the next meeting. Mumm mentioned if the Senate is going to sponsor a fun event in the summer, a committee needs to get started on it. Mumm noted if she doesn't have volunteers by the next meeting, she will appoint a committee.
- Committee Appointments
- Technology Advisory
VC Roark had requested names of three candidates who would be good contributing members for the Technology Advisory Committee. The Executive Committee suggested Tim McMullen, Kathy Livingston and Bonnie Mumm. Mumm asked if there was anyone who would like to have their name submitted. Dave Bargen voiced interest. It was decided to forward the names of Bargen, Livingston and McMullen. The Co-Chairs of the committee will select one.
- Child Care
Senate was asked to submit two names for the Child Care Committee. The Executive Committee suggested Carol Hines and Shelly Fleck. Mumm asked if there was anyone else who would like to be considered. Members agreed to forward those two names. VC Randy Haack will select one.
Mention was made that Earl Rademacher had been selected as the Hub Freedom Award recipient for the area of education. Mumm read a certificate of achievement the Senate will present to him; members signed the certificate.
- Adjournment was at 12:05 p.m.
The next meeting will be May 18th at 10:30 a.m.