April 2016 Minutes

Council of Academic Professionals
Tuesday, April 12, 2016, 314A Illini Union
Meeting Minutes submitted by Elizabeth Rockman

Attendees:  Richard Gegg (1), Kristina Miller (1), Shawna Naidu (3), Todd Spinner (3), Maeve Reilly (4), Rick Atterberry (5), Teresa Steckler (6), Elizabeth Wahle (6), Betoel Escobar (7), Tanisha King-Taylor (7), Tracy Parish (8), Mindy Spencer (8), Mike Bohlmann (9), Ravi Ramrattan (10), Elizabeth Rockman (10), Beth Hall (11), Jeffrey Stein (11), Elyne Cole (ex-officio)

1.    Call to Order – Chair Mike Bohlmann called the meeting to order at 2:05 p.m.

2.    Public Comment – None.

3.    Chair’s Remarks – Mike Bohlmann noted state budget is still in flux, and that there was a budget resolution at Senate.  Elections are winding down, and the June meeting will be when new members come in.  Mike didn’t run, but might volunteer for Senate Committees; he will remain Chair one more full meeting and the start of the following meeting.

4.    Review and Approval Previous Month’s Minutes – Jeff Stein made the motion to approve, and Ravi Ramrattan seconded; motion passed.

5.    Announcements:

Report from Academic Professional Senators – Rick noted that in the last Senate meeting the motion was to divest from coal-related energy, which is minimal, which passed.  Senate also adopted a climate action plan, and the afore-mentioned budget resolution.  Senate Chair Gay Miller was supporting of continuing to find real-world examples of when health-care bills are not being paid/honored.  There is one Senate meeting (5/2/16) left in the Academic Year.

Senate, Campus and University Committee Reports – Jeff Stein noted that the Committee on Admissions was going to have their first of the year.  Rich Gegg discussed a 24 notice rule related to e-mail release, and that there will be a licensing committee (no one unit can determine that issue).

Senate asks for names for faculty positions for Senate Committees by May, and usually CAP submits in the summer, which is not as timely.  Mike will work with Tim Flanagin and Rich Gegg about which committees will have AP vacancies, and announce those to all APs.

6.    Communications Committee – Nothing to report.

7.    Procedures and Elections Committee – Rich Gegg discussed that elections just finished, that they were challenging, and that voter turnout was low.  The following seats were filled:  District 2 – Amy Hovious, District 3 – Todd Spinner, District 4 – Andrew Reynolds, District 5 – Rick Atterberry, District 9 – Richard Stokes.  Discussion followed about how to get more to run for CAP, and while participation is encouraged, it is not required for all supervisors to support individuals to be in CAP, and that higher-level administration can support CAP but not require that of units.  It was also noted that it’s CAP members’ responsibility to talk up what CAP does.

8.    CAPE Awards – CAPE Awards ceremony follows CAP meeting.

9.    Grievance Officer Update – Beth Hall had met with one individual, and Jeffrey Stein reported being in the middle of one report.

10.    Academic Human Resources Report by the Associate Provost for Human Resources

Budget Update – No official plans regarding eliminations have been released.  Mike clarified that while the Provost said payroll could be covered through FY17, that reassurance did not guarantee positions.  Elyne clarified that nothing has been imposed regarding Civil Service, but that HR is trying to minimize the impact (ie., of one elimination causing 8-10 bumps).  Duties cannot just be given to APs as whole jobs, and AHR may be contacted about when that balance becomes a tipping point.

Academic Professional Development Fund – The APDF has had 96 applications for a total of $50,019.50; 5 were declined and 1 was pending.  Unfortunately the program has been suspended (and applications received by the end of April 12 would be reviewed), and CAP would notify members.

Elyne also noted that there has been SURS communications about tax issues individuals and units not being allowed to agree on a future work plan once retirement plan is submitted, nor may an individual volunteer to help after the service date and before an agreement is made.  If this is violated, SURS may lose their tax exempt status.  This is particularly problematic for faculty, as they advise graduate students, supervise research, etc.  This does not mean individuals cannot come back to work after the transition, but that the agreement cannot be made ahead of time.  There will be retirement seminars to clarify this issue.

11.    Information from OBFS on employee reimbursements – Kristina noted there had been two articles in the News-Gazette about the communication regarding 30+ days before payments, and that there are 8 openings in UPAY and 18% of the employees are Civil Service; the manpower is lacking, and they have one-third of their positions vacant.  There is a process for individuals to apply to get their funds faster if they have dire circumstances, but few cases are accepted and that only reduces the time to 15 days.  It’s advised to use TEM/Pcard whenever possible to avoid going out-of-pocket on expenses.  Beth Hall noted that some units don’t allow that mode of payment, and Elizabeth Rockman added that not all charges are accepted.

12.    Ad hoc committee on health insurance issues for APs – There was discussion regarding whether CAP should make a resolution.  Tracy Parish said that directly state-funded plans are paying claims, but payment plans are out of pocket.  Dental payments are 9-10 months behind.  CMS will add interest to old payments.  Deb Stone noted that using in-network providers will ensure that individuals will not have to pay up-front.  Tracy plans to follow up with Candace Shimkus at CMS, and Deb Stone recommended contacting Katie Ross of UHR, as she works with CMS.  Mike continues to accept and pass along stories about these issues.  Related to the resolution, Jeff made the motion, and Rich seconded; it passed.

13.    Ad hoc committee on CAP role in budget crisis – Mindy and Maeve will meet with Amanda soon.

14.    Ad hoc committee on by-laws update – No update.

15.    Unfinished Business – Ravi discussed Eastern Illinois University situation.

16.    New Business – A guest brought up the non-tenure track faculty issue relating to CAP.

19.    Closed Session for Privileged Information/Grievances – None.

16.    Adjournment – Kristina Miller made the motion to adjourn, and Ravi Ramrattan seconded; motion passed.
Meeting was adjourned at 3:45 p.m.

March 2016 Minutes

Council of Academic Professionals
Thursday, March 3, 2016, 314A Illini Union
Meeting Minutes submitted by Elizabeth Rockman

Attendees:  Richard Gegg (1), Kristina Miller (1), Kathleen Booth (2), Todd Spinner (3), Maeve Reilly (4), Dustin Yocum (4), Rick Atterberry (5), Teresa Steckler (6), Elizabeth Wahle (6), Betoel Escobar (7), Tracy Parish (8), Mindy Spencer (8), Mike Bohlmann (9), Melissa Madsen (9), Ravi Ramrattan (10), Elizabeth Rockman (10), Jeffrey Stein (11), Elyne Cole (ex-officio)

  1. Call to Order – Chair Mike Bohlmann called the meeting to order at 1:20 p.m.
  2. Public Comment – None.
  3. Chair’s Remarks – Mike Bohlmann noted there is still no state budget, and that the general consensus among the President, Chancellor, and Provost is that there may not be one until after the November 2016 elections.  UI does not seem to be in the same straits as Chicago State University, EIU, or WIU.President is still moving forward on UI Strategic Planning, and Mike reminded all to go to the March 14 session.  For the SURS Advisory Committee, there were 8-10 volunteers.
  4. Review and Approval Previous Month’s Minutes – Jeff Stein made the motion to approve, and Ravi Ramrattan seconded; motion passed.
  5. Announcements:
    Report from Academic Professional Senators – Rick Atterberry noted the last Senate meeting was very short.Senate, Campus and University Committee Reports – Darcy Sementi, who is serving on the Chancellor Search Committee, discussed the Town Hall Meeting on March 11.  CAP members discussed various ways to engage APs in this discussion, including official statements, brown bag meetings, and other venues.  Darcy clarified the anticipated timeline.
  6. Communications Committee – Mindy Spencer updated on the CAP brown bag info session on South Campus, which Rick Atterberry organized and Mike, Elizabeth, Rich, Rick and Mindy helped facilitate approximately 15 individuals.  Also planned was a north campus brown bag info session, and other districts have held them as well.  Ideas promoted were “bring a friend” and to encourage feedback on the Chancellor position at meetings.
  7. Procedures and Elections Committee – Rich Gegg noted there were two candidates each for the three Senate district, and those elections would kick-off the following Monday (for a week), and that CAP elections would be held (there had been special elections for Districts 8 and 9 previously).
  8. CAPE Awards – The April CAP meeting was suggested to be moved to April 12 to accommodate the changed date for the CAPE Awards.  Jeff Stein made the motion to approve, and Elizabeth Wahle seconded; motion passed.
  9. Grievance Officer Update – Jeffrey Stein and Beth Hall had been informed of urgent matters to be discussed in closed session.
  10. Academic Human Resources Report by the Associate Provost for Human Resources
    Budget Update – None.Academic Professional Development Fund – The APDF has had 89 applications (3 denied for time submitted) for a total of $44,669.50; 3 were declined and $43,819.50 have been funded.Discussion followed on proactive measures APs could work out with departments in the case of extreme budget cuts, such as: offer to leave earlier with a cash payment, offer to reduce appointment from 100%, and reduce from 12 month employment.  Elyne noted there could be possible personal consequences.  At this time there cannot be more than 25% lump sum except in extenuating circumstances and in the case of a separation agreement.  Individuals and departments could have difficulty with the full amount of T-contract.  Sandy Jones and Deb Stone noted various issues related to creative suggestions, such as 9 month employees retaining notice but not health care costs over months not worked.  In cases where employees change percentages or months, there is no promise of returning once/if budget improves.  Furloughs are not on the table.
  11. SURS MAC AP Representative Appointment – A vote was taken for two candidates, and Tracy Parish will serve in this role.
  12. APDF and District 1 discussion – District 1 still has interest in having funds be administered under the APDF protocols.
  13. Senate proposal to change Senate electorate and representation – Mike asked all CAP members to encourage AP Senators to go to the vote on this, in case the proposal could lead to less AP representation.
  14. Ad hoc committee on CAP role in budget crisis – No update.
  15. Ad hoc committee on by-laws update – The committee has not met with AHR yet.
  16. Unfinished Business – None.
  17. New Business – Discussions were held regarding budget hearings and state insurance issues, and how CAP members’ roles intersect.  Mike, Tracy, and Kristina volunteered to organize personal stories regarding impact of late/no health payments to disseminate to public officials.
  18. Closed Session for Privileged Information/Grievances – Closed Session was held.
  19. Adjournment – Meeting was adjourned at 3:45 p.m.

CAP resolution on insurance benefit funding

CAP passed the following resolution at its April 2016 meeting. It will be shared with Governor Rauner, members of the Illinois General Assembly, the Academic Senate, and others.

WHEREAS, the Council of Academic Professionals (hereafter referred to as CAP) serves the interests of full-time, part-time, and retired academic professionals at Illinois and provides direct and
concerted communication between academic professional staff and administrative officers of the University;

WHEREAS, an ad hoc committee on healthcare coverage was appointed by CAP to identify and summarize the negative impact the FY16 budget impasse is having on healthcare coverage for
academic professionals on the Urbana-Champaign campus;

WHEREAS, the ad hoc committee on healthcare coverage findings include that claim payments for the Quality Care Dental Plan administered by Delta Dental, the Quality Care Health Plan administered by Cigna as well as for HealthLink OAP and Coventry OAP are on hold until a budget is approved and funds released while employees continue to pay their contributions to these health care plans;

WHEREAS, prior to a hold being placed on payments, claims were being processed with a delay of over one year with payments for claims through 12/10/2014 having been released to QCHP contracted providers, claims processed through 09/05/2014 having been released to non-QCHP contracted providers, and dental claims under Delta Dental being processed based on whether they
were incurred at a network or non-network dentist.

WHEREAS, the lack of funding for state employee healthcare benefits has resulted in a significant reduction in access to healthcare as well as significant financial and emotional hardships for employees and their families.

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Council of Academic Professionals adopts thisresolution urging the State of Illinois General Assembly to draft and pass legislation to:
1. provide funding to immediately cover the cost of all unpaid claims administered through the Illinois Department of Central Management Services to eliminate the financial burden placed on families of state employees.
2. provide funding for all future FY16 state employee healthcare benefits claims administered through the Illinois Department of Central Management Services to restore access to healthcare for employees and their families as outlined in the healthcare plan selected by each employee during the annual benefit choice period.

AND, BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, that the attached Final Report of the Council of Academic Professionals Ad Hoc Committee on Healthcare Coverage be incorporated into this resolution as
providing the rationale, intent, and guidance of the Council of Academic Professionals in making these
recommendations.

Self-Nominations for CAP Districts Sought

All eligible Academic Professionals in Districts 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, and 9 are encouraged to put forward their names to fill vacancies on the Council of Academic Professionals.

Please complete the self-nomination form by Wednesday, March 23, 2016. Elections for Council District Representatives will be held the first full week of April.

The elected will serve a three-year term beginning June 1, 2016, through May 31, 2019, pending the Chancellor’s approval. The Council of Academic Professionals meets on the 1st Thursday of every month from 1-4 p.m.