Staff Congress
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May 2, 2005


Darlene Allen Rhonda Crisp David Jessie Rhonda Mackin Belva Sammons *Willis Taylor
*Ed Beam Ray Crum Linda Kegley Amy Moore Dallas Sammons Cindy Thompson
Lisa Caskey *Kim Fultz Donna King Pam Moore Rhonda Sloan Jonell Tobin
Joy Cecil Phillip James M. LaFontaine April Nutter Doug Snedegar Terry White
Gaylena Cline Kristie Jenkins Jeffrey Liles Darlene Ramey Stephanie Stewart Elizabeth Williams

*Denotes member was absent

Guests: Roger Barker, Director of Human Resources, Lora Pace, First Year Program & Retention Director; and Jerome Stephens, Student Activities Coordinator

Chair Jessie called the meeting to order at 1:03 p.m.  A quorum was present.  

Motion: To approve the April 4, 2005 meeting minutes.
  Proposed:  Rep. James Seconded:  Rep. Stewart
Called for Vote: Motion was passed with corrections on page two.  Change Lora Paced to Lora Pace.


Chair's Report Chair Jessie reported that the President's Council  had met on Wednesday, April 27.  The council discussed five main items at this meeting.  Chair Jessie passed around a sheet describing the five items to be discussed which included: Communication Plan for new business procedures, President's Leadership Academy, Update on Laptop Computer Program, Diversity Program and Federal Relations Proposal Process.
Vice-Chair's Report No report.
Secretary's Report Secretary Caskey reported the following expenses for the month of March:  $62.06 on refreshments and $76.00 on Staff Congress election sample ballots, leaving a balance of $1,730.22. 


Committee Reports

Credentials and Elections Rep. LaFontaine reported that as of this date there was only one absentee ballot that had been cast for this year's election.  Rep. LaFontaine also reported that Rep. Snedegar would be handling this year's election since she is running for a seat on the ballot.  Rep. LaFontaine reminded Staff Congress members that the on-line voting would open on Wednesday, May 18.  She also asked Staff Congress members to remind their constituents about the upcoming election. 
University Standing Appointments No report.
Fiscal Affairs No report.
Personnel Policies and Benefits No report.

Old Business

Rep. Kegley asked if anyone had checked to see if it would be possible for employees with 15 years of service to receive a discount on parking decals.  Rep. A. Moore stated that she had passed this on to the committee in charge of parking.  Rep. A. Moore stated that she would go back to the chair of this committee and see what decision had been made.

New Business 

Rep. D. Sammons asked Rep. LaFontaine if the on-line voting program prevented staff members from voting again if they cast an absentee ballot.  She also stated that if the on-line voting was open for a longer period of time maybe this would cut down on the number of staff members who cast absentee ballots.  Rep. LaFontaine stated that employees can vote from any computer that has internet access.  Rep. LaFontaine stated that as of this date only one absentee ballot had been cast and that last year we had about 30 people on campus to vote by absentee ballot.  Lora Pace asked if poll stations would be open throughout campus this year.  Rep. LaFontaine responded no because these polls were used very little last year and the Elections and Credentials Committee did not feel the need for them this year as there are computer stations placed throughout campus.  Rep. D. Sammons then stated that they might want to consider having the on-line voting open for a longer period of time for elections in the future.  Rep. LaFontaine stated that she would check with IRCA to see if this would be possible.

Rep. P. Moore stated that after last week's meeting with the President it looked as if the University will not be doing away with the merit pay system, she also asked if it would be possible for someone to look at the evaluation process to possibly make it a simpler form.  Roger Barker replied that Staff Congress was the one who came up with the current form; therefore it needs to begin with Staff Congress.  Rep. B. Sammons replied that previously there was a much longer form that Human Resources had developed and that the current form was streamlined from that one.  Rep. P. Moore stated that if Staff Congress started working on this now then maybe a simpler form could be in place by January 2006.  Rep. A. Moore asked if OHR ever looked at other merit based systems.  Roger Barker replied no.  Chair Jessie asked if we were the only university with a merit based system.  Roger Barker replied no.  Rep. A. Moore stated that her committee would look into this.  Roger Barker then stated that supervisors determine who receives merit pay not the evaluation score.  He then stated that the Vice-Presidents have the final say in how merit is distributed.  Roger Barker added that the Vice-Presidents receive names of people in each division who qualify for merit, then they determine how merit is to be issued.  He continued, OHR recommends that the merit pay is based on evaluation scores; however, the Vice-Presidents make the final decision.

Lora Pace asked Chair Jessie to elaborate on the President's Leadership Academy.  Chair Jessie responded that the President is forming a group to address leadership levels across campus.  He added that currently the following individuals are on this group:  Al Baldwin, Jeffery Liles, Beth Patrick and Mike Seelig.  Chair Jessie also added that the leadership council would be under the President's Office.  He added that there would be an opportunity to do an internship to get an understanding of the University's practices.  Presently they are looking to see how this is being done at other universities and corporations.  He added that presently they are planning a kick-off in the fall but that academy would not actually start until 2006.

Rep. Liles stated that the University's current strategic plan is about to expire and that CPE has asked that we update our campus action plan.  He added that Staff Congress will have an opportunity to make suggestions for the new plan.  He added that a draft of the new plan is currently on-line and asked Staff Congress members to go on-line to review this plan and to respond on how they feel about the new plan.  He added that the University committee will take these responses and/or suggestions and try to incorporate them into the new plan.


Lora Pace asked who had been invited to the President's Investiture and was it true that the entire faculty had been invited.  Rep. Liles replied that Staff Congress' invitations had been sent and that members should receive them via campus mail either today or tomorrow.  He added that Faculty Senate received invitations and that it was decided to send invitations to all faculty members.  He continued that the Board of Regents and other special guests have received invitations.  He added that presently they are planning to have 900 seats in the Crager Room.  A. Moore asked why all faculty was invited but not all staff.  Rep. Liles responded that he could only report the facts that had been given to him.  Lora Pace added that it still would have been a nice gesture if all of the staff had been invited.  Rep. King replied that maybe a memo should be sent regarding staff not being invited to the President's Investiture.  Chair Jessie said he would do this after today's meeting.  Rep. Liles stated that invitations were sent out only for the number of chairs being setup in the Crager Room.  He added that the investiture will be telecast on the web for those individuals unable to attend.

Rep. Cecil asked about the e-mail that was sent requesting information for caps and gowns for Staff Congress members.  Chair Jessie replied that he had been told that Staff Congress members would have to wear gowns to the investiture and that Staff Congress members would be able to keep these gowns for future use. 

Regent's Report  - No report.


Rep. Thompson announced that the Employee Picnic would be held on Tuesday, May 10 10:45 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Rep. White announced that the renovation on Button Hall entrance would begin today or tomorrow.

Rep. D. Sammons announced that graduation would be held on Saturday, May 14.

Rep. B. Sammons announced that University Health Awareness week was coming up and that red ribbons would be sent to Staff Congress members via campus mail.

Rep. Stewart announced that next month there would be a Staff Congress luncheon for newly elected and outgoing members.  An e-mail will be sent to everyone with more details.

Chair Jessie announced that an e-mail would be sent to Staff Congress members letting them know the date and time of June's meeting.

Meeting was adjourned at 2:00 p.m.

Minutes submitted by:  Lisa Caskey, Secretary