Academic Staff Council - January 26, 2009

Present: Van Roosenbeek, Leahy, Kolkmeier, Dodge, Sasaki, Lo, Bean-Thompson, Heyer, Robinson, Vahala
Excused: Burton
Guests: Chancellor Gow, Vice Chancellor Hetzel

Meeting called to order at 1:18pm.

I. Pay Plan

The Regents have recommended an increase of 2.5% in each year of the next biennium.  However it is not currently funded.  This kind of increase is typically distributed as 2/3 performance and 1/3 merit.  Vice Chancellor Hetzel came to get the Council’s opinion of this distribution.  The pay plan is distributed first to the University and then to the four divisions.  If not everyone is awarded merit money, any excess funds are turned back over to the central fund.   

Governor Doyle will be here on Friday in Port O Call at 12:45pm. 

II. Budget

The federal stimulus package has talked about shovel ready projects and Centennial Hall is one of a few in the state.  That has shifted to talk of funding work related to renovation and maintenance.  The Cowley Auditorium and lab renovations have been added to the list.  It is not guaranteed that we would receive any funds.  The University is examining how other states are dealing with their deficits.  The website set up for people to give suggestions on cost saving idea has received about 100 suggestions which have been distributed to the Council.  The goal is to save about 2.1 million dollars. 

Bookstore – The technology in the bookstore is becoming outdated and the purchasing power of a single bookstore is quite limited.  It turns out that neither the Bookstore or Textbook Rental is currently self-sustaining. The university is focusing on bringing a business-minded attitude to running the Bookstore and Textbook Rental. 90% of bookstores on college campuses are outsourced.  Five other UW schools of comparable size have outside groups which manage their bookstore and/or textbook rental.  We will be asking for information from companies who run bookstores on other campuses.  If the employees currently in the bookstore do not find a good fit with the company that comes in, the University will work to find another place on campus for them.  An agreement reached with the outside company would give us at least an agreed upon amount of money per year.  The University would like to use this money to fund undergraduate research.

Alternative Funding for Counseling and Testing – The University is looking at raising fees at the Health Center to support funding for Counseling and Testing. 

Copy Center – The University is looking at doing something similar with the copy center as they considering doing with the Bookstore. 

Mission Statement – The group is still working on it.  A couple ideas have been suggested and are being considered.  The goal is to have a mission statement in February sometime. 

Meeting adjourned at 3:05pm.