Staff Assembly Minutes
May 8, 2014
Blue Creek Bay Room, SUB
Call to Order: 12:00 pm


New Employee Introductions:
· Graydon Stanley introduced Denise Moore, the new Interim Veteran’s Advisor
·
Welcome!


Guest Speakers: President Joe Dunlap
We have five sources of revenue for our budget; state appropriations, county tax, PTE funding from the state, and tuition. As many of you know our enrollment is adversely related to the economy. Over the last eight years we have enjoyed unprecedented growth at NIC. But as the economy has gotten better our enrollment has dropped, which is consistent with national trends. This year our enrolment declined about ten percent, so our tuition income declined about ten percent. We are going to assume enrollment will continue to decline another ten percent, so we made some budget adjustment last fall in response and then as we went through the budget process this spring, we took into account the potential reduction next year. So we have reduced our budget by 2.3 million dollars which is pretty significant. One of the planning assumptions we wanted to adhere too was that we wanted to maintain all full-time positions, if possible, and I am very proud to tell you we have not had to lay off a single full-time person! Different areas of campus could take a greater reduction in their budgets, so we didn’t take a flat percent. For example in the facilities budget we had very significant savings due to energy conservation, so they were able to cut more from their budget. Instruction saved quite a bit from their budget by not hiring more adjunct instructors, due to the enrollment decline. The state has mandated there will be a one percent increase to wages. But they did not give the college any funds to cover the increase. So we had to come up with additional funding and in addition to that, based on the recommendation by the Meet and Confer Committee the administration agreed we would go forward and request a step increase for every employee. A step increase is roughly a two percent increase in pay.
Then we looked at how to fund that, which would be $600,000 to $700,000. We have some options, we could reduce our budget, increase tuition or take the three percent we are allowed from property taxes, or a combination. An interesting phenomenon has occurred with the increasing property values, we could take our full three percent, and if you owned a $200,000 house your property tax would actually go down about two or four dollars per year because the county has increased the homeowner’s exemptions this year. Plus a significant amount of new property helps to offset our portion of the taxes.
We have made that recommendation to the Board. We met with every Board member individually and we have planned a budget workshop to help the Board understand our requests, and finalize the budget. The second reading of the budget is later this month, we are hoping it is approved then.
In my newsletter I sent out yesterday I pointed out some significant accomplishments. I am very proud of all the accomplishments this year.

Information/Updates:

Election of new officers- Nancy Edwards
I want to thank everyone who accepted the nominations! For Vice Chair, we had Jessica Grantham and Lila Tatum, the new Vice Chair will be Jessica Grantham. For Secretary we had Kristi Granier and Kathy Kraus, the new secretary will be Kristi Granier. The Senators how ran are: Mindy Patterson, Colleen Ward, Andrea Woempner, Jacob Rothrock, Alex Degolia, Rex Fairfield, Kym Browning, Kelly Hopkins, Josh Gittel, Betsy Conery, Jeff Davis, Suzie Deane, Thomas Scott, Kecia Siegel, Jett Dougherty, Donya Gadley, Jessica Bennett, Colleen Hoffman, Vicki Morgan, Melissa Mewhinney and Michelle Lewis. The new senators are Josh Gittel, Betsy Conery, Kelly Hopkins and Kym Browning. Senate Alternates will be Teresa Henderson and Kelly Lyons.
They will be joining continuing senators Chantel Black, Lynn Covey, Nashea Noble and Heidi Schrader.
The new Chair is Carol Jones. (Passing of the Top Banana)


Commencement/Golf Tournament- Nashea Nobel, Chantel Black, Stacy Hudson
Commencement is Friday, breakfast is at 7:30 a.m. in the SUB. If you are in the processional, you need to be in Boswell by 9:30 to start at 9:45 a.m. Stacy is spearheading the cheer squad this year to line the street and cheer on graduates. The ceremony should be over around noon. Then the golf tournament will start around 2 p.m. at Ponderosa Golf Course.
There are over 20 retirees this year so take some time to write on the poster/picture boards we will have on easels at the breakfast. On your breakfast table grab one of the flags so you can come out at 9:45 a.m. to line the street and cheer. This is the whole reason we are here!

Vacations- Josh Gittel
In the past at the end of the year if you have over 30 days of vacation it’s “use it or lose it”. Now it is 240 hours. But since we are on bi-weekly payroll the periods don’t always end on June 30th. You must use any vacation over 240 hours by the end of the last full pay period in June, which is June 29th. Take into account what you will earn for vacation time that pay period. We will be sending out courtesy emails next week for folks who are close because we don’t want employees to lose their vacation time.

Staff Appreciation Awards- Carol Jones
The committee for the awards narrowed the field based on the strength of the nominations. There were many great nominations, thanks to everyone who nominated. (All nominations were passed out to nominees who were present.)



Construction – Garry Stark
Today at 2 p.m. we have a bid opening for repaving College Dr. it was originally going to start after commencement but due to a snafu with the state, it will be a week later. It should be done by July 1. We also got some money from the state to redo the roof at Workforce Training Center and install hardware to use access cards for most of the buildings on the main campus.

IT Services Memorial Day weekend – Steve Ruppel
We have core router changes to do, for our two main routers that mirror each other. Every packet of information goes through these routers so this is a really big deal! It was last done about ten years ago. We have been testing and are now ready to install. We will start on Friday the 23rd, with intermittent outages on the 24th and 25th. If you advise students let them know that weekend they will not be able to register for classes. And instructors will not be able to work in Blackboard, etc. Hopefully we will have a soft landing on the 26th, which is Memorial Day, so nobody will be here! We will use the Cardinal Connect to send out messages when we are done.


Weapons Policy – Alex Harris
We had a discussion with the Board on the direction they would like us to take with our weapons policy, due to House Bill 1254, which allows people with a special permit to carry a weapon on campus. The question of how we address this will come after we have the policy. But I want to assure you, I am respectful of our processes but we have to have procedures in place on July 1 when the law goes into effect. I am not trying to push this through quickly. We do have a solid policy in place now, we really just need to have an exception for the new law. Places that seat over 1,000 such as Boswell Hall, the gymnasium and the Residence Hall will still be off limits to carry a concealed weapon. We tried to keep the policy thin and the procedure thicker, to keep it simple when people refer to the policy, and they can look at procedure for specific questions. We will probably see changes over the next few years so we may have to modify the procedure or policy. There are still unanswered questions, about leases properties and who is responsible for those.
Please read the policy and procedure Nancy Edwards will email after the meeting and send me your input, or you may send it to your college senators. They will be voting on it next week. Once this is in place we will have a list of frequently asked questions. It is still your responsibility to report any weapons on campus to security, they can check and make sure the individual has required permit.
Because we wanted direction from the Board, we presented them with these options:
· Arm a highly trained security force, through a phased-in plan, along with a school resource office through CDA Police Dept., which is the most expensive, and less than 40 hours per week coverage
· Not arming our security officers, increase the number of security.
We want to increase the visibility of security on campus whether they are armed or not. They will, however, all be wearing bullet proof vests.
We have been working on this for over six months and still have much to work out. There is a perception we will be less safe and, perception is reality, so we need to do everything we can as administration and security to make sure that that perception does not take over and we feel just as safe on June 30 as we do on July 1.



Reports:
Senate Report—Chantel Black
We do not have the agenda yet for next week so this is what we went over last month. We had the second reading of the program evaluation policy and procedure is still tabled, as well as filling vacant positions with benefits. All of the other HR policies I mentioned last month have passed their second readings so they will go to the Board. We also heard the first reading of the Student Union Advisory Board Committee as a standing committee, and of the Sustainability Committee as a standing committee, so we will be hearing the second reading of those. And we apparently will be talking about weapons!

Board Meeting Report—Nancy Edwards
Joe explained what happened at the Board meeting in regards to the budget, Alex explained what happened in regards to weapons so I will cover who received tenure, they are; Peggy Wasserman, Nursing, Michelle Galey, College Skills, and Eric Mack in Math.
Celebrating Success was Philosophy Conference that many of our students were able to attend.


Good of the Order:

Shout-Outs:

Kylene Lloyd from Sara Fladeland, Jessica Grantham and Josh Gittel from Sara Fladeland, Michelle Lewis from Colleen Hoffman, Garry Stark from Carol Jones, Copy Center from Ed Kaitz, Steve McGroarty from Matt Sebby (verbal), to Huihsin Chung from HR, Rhonda Smalley from Betsy Conery (verbal). Nancy Edwards from Carol Jones



Adjourned: 1 pm