Academic Staff Assembly Minutes 10-09-17
ACADEMIC STAFF ASSEMBLY MEETING MINUTES
272 Bascom Hall
Monday, October 9, 2017
3:30 to 5:00 p.m.
272 Bascom Hall
Monday, October 9, 2017
3:30 to 5:00 p.m.
Provost Sarah Mangelsdorf called the meeting to order at 3:32 p.m.
Automatic Consent: The Academic Staff Assembly minutes of Monday, September 11, 2017, were approved.
Guest: Chris Caulkins, Benefits Services, Office of Human Resources
Chris Caulkins told the Assembly about a new online benefits counselor called Alex. Information entered during your session is not collected, and you also don’t have to enter any information to use Alex.
Chris also outlined changes to benefits this year, which are very few for employees in Madison. These include the lack of domestic partner coverage for 2018. Domestic partners will be offered COBRA for 36 months of health insurance. WEA Trust will now offer the national health insurance coverage. There are several reasons to take action: opting out of health insurance and using a health savings, medical flex savings, or child care savings flex account.
There are no premium changes for 2018. 2019 health insurance premiums may be impacted by participation in the wellness assessment.
Guest: Kathi Kilgore, Academic Staff Professionals Representation Organization (ASPRO)
Kathi Kilgore is the lobbyist hired by ASPRO. ASPRO was founded in 1989 by the Academic Staff Assembly at UW-Madison.
The state budget was signed in the middle of September about 3 months late. As part of the budget, the Board of Regents will begin to develop performance metrics. There will be 4 metrics under each goal. These need to be approved by the Joint Committee on Finance. They also need to develop measurements for the faculty and instructional staff teaching workload.
ASPRO will be meeting with Ray Cross at the end of October. They will be discussing the performance metrics, instructional load, pay plan distribution as well as other items of interest to academic staff.
There are a few floor sessions left in the Assembly and Senate. There have been two competing bills introduced in the Senate around fetal tissue research. There will likely be other bills introduced that will be of interest to UW-Madison.
Guest: Rebecca Blank, Chancellor
Chancellor Rebecca Blank thanked everyone who works on shared governance. There is a lot of good news. Graduation and retention rates are at an all-time high. The 6-year graduate rate is 86%. The All Ways Forward Campaign has raised $2.2 billion after 4 years including full tuition scholarships for 1,000 undergraduate students.
There are several new initiatives this year including restarting the cluster hiring program to hire 3 new members in 3 different departments. This program will strengthen interdisciplinary research.
There is also the Badger Promise program. If you are a Wisconsin resident and transfer here from a Wisconsin two-year college, you will get one year of free tuition if you are a first generation student, and two years if you are also a Pell eligible student.
This year’s budget included no funding cuts. It does include a pay plan in the second year of the biennium. It restored some maintenance funding as well as including capital funding for a Bascom utilities project and the parking ramp in front of the Veterinary Medicine building.
The campus has been working to raise funding by expanding summer session offerings, raising out of state tuition to market levels, fundraising through the Foundation, professional master’s programs and working on the student mix between in-state and out-of-state and the total number of students. Last year UW-Madison admitted 73% of Wisconsin applicants.
This year’s Discretionary Compensation Fund Program will be $4 million for staff, and the bonus program will also be $4 million.
In regards to campus climate, the Chancellor renewed her call for all units to continue to engage in inclusivity and diversity discussions. There will also be a study group looking at the two different groups called KKK that existed on campus in the 1920s.
Standing Committee Reports
Kevin Niemi, ASEC chair, shared that ASEC worked with Michael Bernard-Donals in identifying academic staff to serve as Hostile and Intimidating Behavior (HIB) liaisons. The HIB website will be coming out towards the end of this month. ASEC also sent responses to the Board of Regents regarding the “Freedom of Expression” and “Administrative Hiring Policies.” Kevin remarked that the quality of applications for the KKK study group were excellent.
Ed Elder, Co-Chair of the Mentoring Committee, reported that they have 88 mentees and 32 mentors this year. They are challenged in getting enough mentors. This year there will be groups of mentees assigned to a mentor. Their kickoff for the program is next week, and they will have a fall event in November.
Anna Paretskaya, Representative of District #257, gave an update on the Faculty Assistant resolution passed by the Assembly last spring. Faculty Assistants do work that is similar to Teaching Assistants. The Faculty Assistants in ESL were reclassified as Lecturers during the summer. In addition, the Faculty Assistant rates in the College of Letters and Science were raised, so new Faculty Assistants were hired at a higher rate. Those Faculty Assistants with PhDs did not receive a raise. Alyssa Franze, previously a Faculty Assistant with ESL and now a Faculty Assistant in Sociology, shared her personal perspective with the Assembly.
Kevin Niemi presented the annual report on Assembly Business for 2016-17. There were a total of 13 resolutions passed by the body.
ASPP Chapters 3 and 5
Bruno Browning (ASEC) moved the Academic Staff Assembly approve changes to ASPP Chapters 3 and 5. Seconded. Motion Approved.
Provost Sarah Mangelsdorf talked about the two changes in Board of Regents policy. The free speech policy is not how UW-Madison would have written it. The composition o fthe search committees for President of UW System and chancellors will have 5 Regents, 2 faculty, 1 staff, 1 alumni/friend, and 1 student. No chancellor or vice chancellor can be required to have a terminal degree.
There will be a search launched to fill the vacancy left by Ed Van Gemert’s retirement. This is also a new Dean at the School of Business, Ann Massey.
The Provost reminded the Assembly that the performance bonus funding can go to anyone regardless of funding source. Supervisors must be current on their performance evaluations to receive an adjustment.
Adjourned at 4:51 pm.
Minutes submitted by Heather Daniels, Secretary of the Academic Staff