THE UNIVERSITY OF TENNESSEE AT CHATTANOOGA
FACULTY COUNCIL MINUTES
March 21, 1996
Signal Mountain Room
ELECTED MEMBERS PRESENT: Betsy Alderman, Tom Bibler, Martha Butterfield, Terry Carney, Ken Carson, Prem Chopra, Neal Coulter, Ahmed Eltom, Leroy Fanning, Nick Honerkamp, Bruce Hutchinson, Phil Kazemersky, Doug Kingdon, Tom Kozubowski, Renée Lorraine, John Lynch, Jim Macomber, Tom Payne, John Phillips, Verbie Prevost, Barbara Ray, Katherine Rehyansky, Joyce Smith, Maria Smith, Margaret Trimpey, Sally Young, Shela Van Ness
ELECTED MEMBERS ABSENT: Mary Brabston, Robert Duffy, Shawn Evans, Bob Marlowe, Jim McDonell, Gail Meyer, Anna Panorska, Bill Prince, Mike Russell, Kristin Switala
EX-OFFICIO MEMBERS PRESENT: Jane Harbaugh, Fred Obear, Charles Renneisen, George Ross, Grayson Walker
AMONG THE GUESTS PRESENT: Rebecca Carlisle, Gene Ezell, Ralph Moser, Tim Summerlin, Heather Wilson
Call to Order
The meeting was called to order at 3:20 p.m. by President Martha Butterfield.
Approval of Minutes
Professor Edgar Shawen contacted the secretary about the wording on page four: "[t]he Tennessee Attorney General has already ruled it unconstitutional." The Attorney General does not rule; therefore, the sentence should read "[t]he Tennessee Attorney General has already determined it unconstitutional." The minutes were approved as corrected.
President Martha Butterfield said that she was pleased that there were many articles about UTC in the most recent UT Alumnus. She hoped that the trend of featuring work by UTC faculty and students would continue.
Professor Gene Ezell, who was elected to the Faculty / Administrative Relations Committee last semester, has submitted his resignation because he considers it a conflict of interest after his election as Faculty Council President. Nominations for this committee will be taken from the floor at the full faculty meeting in April.
Professor Maria Smith, in the absence of Chair Greg Sedrick, explained the changes which had been distributed for the March 7 meeting. Most were clarifications of existing policies. Professor Doug Kingdon moved, and Professor Leroy Fanning seconded the motion to approve the changes.
Professor Terry Carney asked if the change meant that a student could take courses in another discipline to try to raise the GPA. Director of Graduate Studies Deborah Arfken said yes, if the students advisor approves. Professor Carney requested clarification: Even if the courses do not count toward candidacy, they are still computed in the GPA? Professor Arfken said yes.
President Martha Butterfield wondered if with the new registration system, graduate students couldnt register for whatever they wanted. Professor Arfken agreed, but said that any such courses would still count in the GPA. Professor Verbie Prevost said that students would still have to have a certain GPA in their courses for candidacy.
The motion passed by voice vote.
Faculty Rating of Administration
David Shepherds report will be moved to the April 4 meeting.
Budget & Economic Status
Professor Tom Payne said he will circulate a memo about what the committee has done and that the committee will meet on April 15 to follow up on some items.
Of special interest to his committee has been the Governors recommended 3 % raise, 2 % which is to come from the state and 1 % from UTC. The 401 (k) matching funds program, which matches participant contributions up to $20 / month, is funded only until June. It is not currently included in the Governors budget recommendations. The committee would like to make the matching funds aspect permanent, and then work to have the amount of the matching contribution made larger. He noted that recommendations from THEC should give UTC better funding opportunities.
The Committee had one action item, a proposed change to the description of the Budget and Economic Status Committee brought about by the realization that having some members with previous experience on the Committee was very helpful. The Committee proposes this change: "Appointees to the Budget and Economic Status Committee should serve for two years. These two-year terms should be staggered so that approximately one-half of the Committee will be replaced each year. This will provide continuity and will allow members to effectively participate in the complete budgetary process." Professor Tom Payne moved the change, which was seconded by Professor Verbie Prevost.
Professor Ken Carson asked how the change would be implemented. President Butterfield suggested asking current members to serve again. Professor Bruce Hutchinson asked if there was significant turnover on the committee. He wondered if we are opening Pandoras box to other committees to ask for longer terms. Professor Carson noted that there is current language on page seventeen of the Handbook that committee members should rotate off at the end of three years of service. Professor Terry Carney offered the amendment to make committee membership three years and investigate it further. The Committee could come up with wording and a method of implementation. His motion was seconded by Professor Renée Lorraine.
Professor Tom Bibler explained that the problem is that there are some committees that everyone wants to be on; the Budget and Economic Status Committee is not, however, one of them. He is not sure a resolution will help that. President Butterfield said that much time has to be spent learning the responsibility of the Committee; then dealing with the budget is another problem. She then tried to get a sense of what the Council wanted. Did we want to emphasize that continuity is needed on all committees and ask the Handbook Committee to work on appropriate working and implementation? Council responded that no vote was needed and that the matter could be handled in a consensus framework. The Handbook Committee was asked to look at the current wording and be sure that it was consistent throughout the committees.
Professor Payne then thanked the Administration for an excellent dialogue. He especially appreciated Vice Chancellor George Rosss willingness to supply ongoing information in a timely manner.
As a related matter, President Butterfield asked Mr. Ralph Moser if he had handouts explaining THEC funding. He responded that he is getting them copied.
Dean Charles Renneisen said that it might be a good idea to push our Hamilton County delegation to extend the 401 (k) provisions, or even push for the increase and be satisfied with the extension. Professor Payne explained that about 27% of eligible employees now participate. The legislature believes that if the matching funds were made permanent, a substantially larger number of people would sign up. He reiterated that it is not in the current budget for expansion. Chancellor Obear and Mr. Moser believe that it is in bill form. Professor Terry Carney asked if the Committee would prepare a resolution on the 401 (k) matter for the next Faculty Council meeting. Chancellor Obear said that the legislature plans to adjourn April 20. Dean Renneisen asked if President Butterfield would contact other Faculty Council presidents to see if they wanted a joint resolution. Professor Honerkamp recommends that we contact other Council presidents.
Mr. George Ross said that he is still compiling information about County and City school teachers salaries, but would talk today about the budget. He thanked Dr. Karen Adsit of the Teaching Resource Center for helping him to put together the presentation. He explained that we receive $69 million, not quite 6% of the system budget. There is a long budget process which begins on each campus and moves upward in the system. Individual units hold budget hearings. The bad news is that no one got what they asked for. The good news is that some of the difference will be made up for in additional student fees. In each case, they try to accommodate the most critical needs first. In fact, there is talk of instituting a technology fee. The good news is that no cuts are anticipated, and there may be a small raise. Our campus priorities include finishing fiber optic cabling and the library.
Professor Verbie Prevost noted that many universities have their budget available on line. Could ours be on line soon? Mr. Ross explained that they are looking into that possibility, but it will probably be two years before they can do that. In the meantime, the budget is available at the circulation desk of the Lupton Library.
Professor John Lynch asked for an explanation of the technology fee. Mr. Ross explained that it would be used to do upgrades on existing computers and add computers to give students greater access. Chancellor Obear reported that four or five regents schools already have technology fees in place. President Butterfield believes that we need to have a fee to replace expendable lab materials, but that this fee was different, addressing the problem of repairing computers and upgrading them.
Professor Ken Carson said that Mr. Ross had called our budget "level," but he believed that if we have to fund 1/3 of the proposed raise, the operating budget will necessarily decrease. Mr. Ross said that was true, but we will get an increase. Professor Tom Payne said that the Budget and Economic Status Committee would like increased communication from the faculty and would welcome questions from the faculty that the Committee should address.
Ad hoc Calendar
Professor Terry Carney, chair, said that the calendar changes were suggested to make absences in MWF classes more equitable and to provide for a possible snow make up day. Professor Ken Carson said that there are fifty-seven Wednesday activities as opposed to ten Friday activities; thus the proposed change means we lose less instructional time. Professor Terry Carney moved, and professor Nick Honerkamp seconded the motion to approve the proposed calendar changes.
Chancellor Obear asked if the snow makeup days applied to both Fall and Spring semesters. Professor Carney said yes. Professor Margaret Trimpey asked when the changes would begin. Professor Obear said that the fall calendar had already been set, so the first time that the fall break change could be instituted would be Fall 1997.
When asked about students feelings about the matter, the representatives from the Echo, Rebecca Carlisle and Heather Wilson, said that they had had no communication from students about these issues.
Professor John Lynch asked if they had considered starting fall break at 5:00 Wednesday. Professor Carney said no, because they wanted to address the two-day week problem.
The motion passed by voice vote.
The Resolution regarding the teaching of evolution went to the legislature, but the bill has been voted out of committee by a narrow margin.
Mr. Richard Brown deferred his report on the move to Metro until April 4, when he will have more information.
Chancellor Obear had extra tickets to the symphony which he offered to an interested Council member.
Professor John Lynch said that he had received a Faculty Verification Statement from the bookstore about course packets. The statement releases Barnes and Noble from any liability. He wondered where the University fits into this situation. President Butterfield had not yet seen one. She has heard of lawsuits where faculty did not have copyrights. Therefore, they are saying that it is your responsibility to get copyright approval, and if you do not, you are liable. Mr. Ralph Moser said that he will talk to Barnes and Noble and get back with the Council on this matter. President Butterfield said that at one time, Barnes and Noble would get copyright approval for faculty. Professor Renée Lorraine asked if President Butterfield knew of an instance when a university had been sued, to which President replied, no, just faculty.
Dean Charles Renneisen said that the report to the NCAA is in the library at the circulation desk. The peer visit takes place April 14-17.
Professor Anna Panorskas father passed away. Council extends its sympathy to her in her loss.
We have just three meetings left for committee reports. Those which have recommendations with them must circulate with the Faculty Council information which comes out before the meeting. The Executive Committee sets the agenda the Thursday before the meeting.
The meeting was adjourned at 4:34 p.m.