Faculty Senate Meeting Minutes
Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Called to Order –3:30 PM
Attendance – Doug Jeppesen, Keith Bickley, Cliff Luxion, Rich Kiefer, Heidi Kindelin, Tom Pulver, Nancy Christensen, Sherry Erickson, Tim Moriarty
Absent – Martine Stuckey, Dan Portincaso, Amy Powers
Treasurer’s Report – Treasurer Luxion reported that Tom Pulver and Denise Nakagi have volunteered to audit the Faculty Council’s accounts. The savings account has a balance of $24,262.43 and the checking account balance is $100.
President’s Report – President Jeppesen reported that the group photo of the Faculty Council on our bulletin board in Bode hall had been defaced and he’d removed it.
Ellen Lindeen has had an Op-Ed piece on conflict in the Middle East in published several publications.
President Jeppesen attended a pottery conference in Copenhagen in August. He gave lectures and one of closing talks. President Jeppesen is currently organizing a conference and symposium that the College will host in 2016.
A family and friends letter from Bill Briggs has been sent to members of Local 604 to raise their awareness about issues directly and indirectly affecting them. AFT is speaking out against voting for Bruce Rauner during this year’s gubernatorial election. It argues that Rauner poses a threat to faculty tenure and organized labor in the state of IL. Members are being encouraged to vote early.
The President discussed responsibilities of the Faculty Council to non-members with Bill Briggs. We have a responsibility to provide support to non-members up to a point. If requested, we’re to accompany them into meetings about contract-related issues in order to answer questions related to the contract. We need not file grievances on their behalf. It was stressed that membership does have its benefits in the way of representation, insurance, voting, and having as say in contract negotiations.
President Jeppesen reported that he attend the faculty coffee house organized by John Reese. He called it a success and urged us to support this in the future.
Lastly, President Jeppesen spoke about faculty responsibilities. Full-time faculty members should make themselves available to students. This adds opportunities and adds value to the College. Faculty office hours and involvement in campus activities are something that online programs do not offer. Being on campus two days a week limits opportunities to students. The Senate discussed the issue of schedules at length and concluded that it is important to consider the long-term consequences of pressing for a two-day schedule.
Senator to Local 604 Report – Senator Kiefer reported that the main focus is on the election. AFT is reluctantly backing Governor Quinn. He represents the lesser of two evils. Turn out to the polls will be important.
Scholarship Committee – Cliff Luxion asked the Senate to vote to open a credit union for depositing funds ($300) to cover scholarship expenses. A vote was taken and the Senate unanimously approved opening the account.
The collection of textbooks for raising funds for the scholarship fund has continued.
The Senate discussed the issue of raising the amount for officer compensation. If voted on and passed the new compensation would begin in January 2015; increases in payroll deductions would begin in August 2015. Treasurer Luxion suggested a standard unit of one hour overload and compensation be given to be given to the officers in the following way: 3 hours for the president and 1 hour to the other four officers, with 0.5 hour to b given to the Webmaster. This would total $4066.20 for officer compensation. An increase of approximately $33 would be deducted from each member’s payroll over the course of the semester, amounting to $4-5 per check.
Rich Kiefer raised concerns about the amount being given to officers other than the President. President Jeppesen urged those gathered to look forward to attracting faculty to run for office in the future. Treasurer Luxion gave the example of Prairie State, and he talked about providing incentives to run for offices other than President.
Rich Kiefer argued that a dues increase would meet resistance. He proposed that we consider 2 hours for President and all other officers receive the same compensation. He also proposed an alternative to be 2 hours for the President, 1.5 hours for the Vice President and all other officers receive the same compensation. The Webmaster would receive 0.5 hours for his/her work. Treasurer Luxion agreed with this last change.
The Senate then voted unanimously to propose the latter to the Constitution on the election ballot. There will not be a dues increase.
President Jeppesen has contacted Dr. Lovingood on the issue of book buyers and their interference with campus operations. He said that he will discuss this with her again.
On the subject of dual-credit, a senator argued that it’s a mistake for the administration to fall back onto management rights when it comes to teaching assignments for dual credit courses. This senator pointed out that the administration has to abide by the Quality Control Act and not simply follow ICCB guidelines. Documentation on this matter needs to be acquired and this needs to be given to the ad-hoc committee on dual-credit. One thing faculty should consider is to ask to see all the courses being offered on all campuses during their scheduling meetings. Faculty should volunteer to teach dual-credit courses on the H.S. campuses.
The Senate discussed the prospect of having a seat on the Foundation Board. Given the amount of money in our scholarship fund ($96K), it stands to reason that the Council should be given a seat. If the Council is a significant donor but it’s not given a seat at the table and an opportunity to participate in the process, then the Council should consider pulling its money from the foundation. The Senate will continue this discussion during the next meeting.
Vice President Bickley reminded everyone of the upcoming concert for Gibby Monokowski and adjourned the meeting.