December 2015 Minutes

Council of Academic Professionals
Thursday, December 3, 2015, 407 Illini Union
Meeting Minutes submitted by Elizabeth Rockman

Attendees: Richard Gegg (1), Kristina Miller (1), Kathleen Booth (2), Shawna Naidu (3), Maeve Reilly (4), Dustin Yocum (4), 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 1:18 p.m.
  1. Public Comment – none
  1. Chair’s Remarks – Mike Bohlmann discussed Senate agenda items, including the background check issue, the Chancellor sharing the White Student Union was started by an outside entity, and underrepresented student scholarships (recruitment has gone from 42% to 67% with the additional funding).Mike provided details about the UPPAC meeting, which includes officers of other CAP organizations at UIC and UIS; discussions focused on strategic planning and budget, and the fact that health care providers are not being paid (while employee contributions continue to be withheld) even though most still continue to provide services.

    Mike was pleased with the numbers of CAP and AP representation at the strategic planning forum the President and Chancellor hosted at Beckman with the consultants; there were many well-thought out responses from campus, community, and students. However, CAP representatives were not asked to focus groups (as UIC and UIS were); Elyne noted that she had provided lists of stakeholders, which included CAP. Mike continues to provide his feedback through the committee, which is discussing how to move forward; the President has been tasked by the BOT to finish this process this academic year.

  1. Review and Approval Previous Month’s Minutes – Richard Gegg made the motion to approve, and Ravi Ramrattan seconded; motion passed. Elizabeth Rockman noted that everyone should sign-in at the meeting, particularly in light of a new attendance policy being introduced into CAP Bylaws.
  1. Announcements:
    Report from Academic Professional Senators – None.Senate, Campus and University Committee Reports – Rich Gegg said that General University Policy was contentious, due to the discussion of the background check policy; there were untrue and misleading statements that were cleared up. The final position of GUP is that the policy is acceptable, but to keep an eye on how it’s implemented. Tracy Parish noted that Senate Committee for Public Engagement has not been active. Elizabeth Rockman said that the Faculty Staff Assistance Program is working on a new web tool to assist clients with issues on a 24-7 basis, and that she will check with them about when they might unveil a draft version to CAP.
  1. Communications Committee – Maeve Reilly offered to provide a session on web tools and how to use the mailer functions.
  1. Procedures and Elections Committee – Special elections were held for Districts 2 and 9 (incumbents changed districts); District 2 has been filled (there was one candidate), but District 9 was a tied vote (so there will be a special runoff election. Otherwise, some AP Senators and some CAP seats will be up for regular elections; continued thanks to AHR for all their help with all election cycles. There are multiple individuals on the PEC as per CAP Bylaws.
  1. CAPE Awards – Kristina Miller noted that the Steering Committee was meeting on December 4, and the full CAPE Committee is meeting on December 7 to determine finalists.
  1. Grievance Officer Update – Jeffrey Stein and Beth Hall had no report.
  1. Academic Human Resources Report by the Associate Provost for Human Resources
    Budget and Academic Professional Development Fund – Elyne Cole said there was no news on budget, and that many departments have their own guidelines even though no budget has been provided.The APDF have had 53 applications (2 denied for time submitted) for a total of $26,647.50 (with a bit under $50K remaining). There was discussion about presenting on the fund (whether that would lead to curtailing the funds and/or if underuse would lose the funding), and there has been no travel freeze.

    Civil Service AuditCivil Service Director is suspending audits, except for UIUC, as it’s already underway; there are concerns about decisions made prior to the previous Director’s retirement. He has also consulted University Audits about policies and procedures.

    Other – Elyne touched on weather-related policy, which led to a discussion of AP issues related to working while not on site.

  2. Ad Hoc Committee on Bylaws update – Mike Bohlmann, Kathleen Booth, Kostas Yfantis, and Rick Atterberry worked on the proposed revisions, which were sent to CAP prior to this meeting. Mike noted that what will continue as per CAP Bylaws (but haven’t been practice) are the annual report and the Elections Committee make-up (Vice Chair, Secretary, and AP on USSP), Changes proposed are an attendance policy (notification to the Chair or Secretary), and that the Communications Officer will not need to put out a monthly newsletter, and that if there are two vacancies in one district, the one with the most votes will take on the longer staggered term.

    Other details clarified were:

  • Mindy Spencer asked about Section 1 related to appointment with UIUC (some Veterinary, Foundation, Nursing are UIC with UA benefits).
  • Mike noted there is also an issue with someone who is split AP/Faculty appointment, but they cannot be both in Senate.
  • Elyne Cole noted to change Central Administration to University Administration.
  • Elizabeth felt that health should be one factor for attendance policy; Mike said it was based on Senate (if not notified, drop).
  • Jeff Stein said that in 1.1 Electorates, there is a duplicate sentence.
  • Tracy Parish brought up the annual report; it goes to the Chancellor via Elyne.
  • Mindy asked if 5.6 should state AP’s on committees, and Mike said it will be left as it is.
  • Mike noted the Bylaws will be cleaned up and re-sent to all for January vote, and Jeffrey asked to see it with track changes.
  1. Ad Hoc Committee on Provost Communications 22 – Jeffrey Stein noted this group is meeting next week and that the Committee has had helpful context from Sharon Reynolds, Bill Bernhardt, and Katherine Gallivan. He also pointed out that departmental compliance is unclear, and his committee had considered some kind of survey to determine compliance. Jeff also discussed the apocryphal nature of mediation that several CAP Grievance Officers have helped provide.
  1. Unfinished Business – None.
  1. New Business
    Elizabeth Rockman asked for a broader discussion of what CAP can do to support APs who are in units that are being fully absorbed or eliminated, particularly if they are receiving terminal contracts as a part of that group. Issues discussed:
  • Mike Bohlmann noted that CAP has multiple roles, including seeking feedback on if policies in place are being utilized, AP Senators having a voice, offering a sympathetic ear, and helping others find employment. He also noted if there are specific situations that CAP could be a voice for APs to media, and could offer a forum for APs to discuss various issues and/or have programs (such as relocation) clarified.
  • Elyne Cole discussed the process of what happens when an employee receives notice, and asked if the questions CAP was raising were about the validity of the decisions rather than the support that is there for the employee; it was agreed the units have the purview, but there was a concern when whole units that are primarily APs are eliminated. At one time, AHR was mobilizing to create a larger compendium of resources (such as resume review, etc.), and Elyne noted that CAP is welcome to help with such efforts. At another juncture, under a previous Provost, it was introduced (much like UIC did in a previous budget crunch) to have only internal searches.
  • Betoel Escobar emphasized internal searches would be of benefit, and Elyne noted that could work on a smaller scale, but there were issues with how to control that in a larger scale. Kathleen Booth said that internal searches hurt “have-not” departments as they lose expertise.
  • Beth Hall introduced an issue of a department with all grant-funded employees being put on “permanent” T-contract (which in effect can provide no notification rights, including the implications of the relocation plan. Elyne will look into this issue.
  • Kristin noted that elimination of Civil Service positions also impacts APs, as APs are expected to pick up the significant slack left in the wake of eliminated positions.
  • Jeff reiterated some points, including CAP helping with empowerment, advocacy, and functional support to impacted APs.
  • Kathleen Booth asked if CAP members could vote on-line for the three candidates for District 2 (information was not available to read at the meeting). Jeff Stein said that there would be no opportunity for feedback, and it was noted they would only be seated until June. A vote was taken, with the result to wait to vote in person until the January CAP meeting.
  1. Closed Session for Privileged Information/Grievances – None.
  1. Adjournment – Jeffrey Stein made a motion to adjourn, and Ravi Ramrattan seconded; meeting was adjourned at 3:40 p.m.

November 5, 2015, minutes

Council of Academic Professionals
Thursday, November 5, 2015, 407 Illini Union
Meeting Minutes submitted by Elizabeth Rockman

Attendees: Richard Gegg (1), Kristina Miller (1), Kathleen Booth (2), Ramachandran Radhakrishnan (2), Maeve Reilly (4), Rick Atterberry (5), Wendy White (5), Teresa Steckler (6), Elizabeth Wahle (6), Betoel Escobar (7), Tracy Parish (8), Mindy Spencer (8), Melissa Madsen (9), Mike Bohlmann (9), Elizabeth Rockman (10), Jeffrey Stein (11), Sandra Jones (ex-officio)

  1. Call to Order – Chair Mike Bohlmann called the meeting to order at 1:15 p.m.
  1. Public Comment – none
  1. Chair’s Remarks – Mike Bohlmann noted that the Ad Hoc Committee to name APs for consideration to serve on the Chancellor Search had approximately 30 nominations to review, and two names were put forward to AP Senators to vote on; Darcy Sementi of the College of Business was selected to represent APs on this search.

There are two elections pending for AP Senators due to job changes of the incumbents: District 2 (Engineering/Technology Services) and District 9 (several smaller colleges including FAA, Media, etc.); please encourage individuals to run.

Mike is representing APs on the Strategic Planning Process Committee appointed by the President; the Committee is charged with brainstorming issues for all three campuses united rather than focusing on University Administration.

  1. Review and Approval Previous Month’s Minutes – Kathleen Booth made the motion to approve, and Rich Gegg seconded; motion passed.
  1. Announcements:

Report from Academic Professional Senators – Rick Atterberry missed the October Senate meeting, but noted that it was less contentious. Rich Gegg indicated that General University Policy would be contentious, since they would be addressing the Background Check Policy.

 Senate, Campus and University Committee Reports – None

  1. Communications Committee – Maeve Reilly had no report.
  1. Procedures and Elections Committee – All incumbents whose terms are up this year will have to re-self-nominate.

Details were discussed related to special elections for Districts 2 and 9 (incumbents changed districts).

  1. CAPE Awards – Kristina updated that there were 50 nominations for the CAPE Awards. Elizabeth Rockman asked about names of the Selection Committee. Melissa Madsen noted many other administrative/HR deadlines fell on the same day, which would skew the nominees away from APs in those fields. It was noted that the Chancellor’s Distinguished Staff Award had a deadline in December, though other timelines might also be different within their process.
  1. Grievance Officer Update – Jeffrey Stein had no report.
  1. Academic Human Resources Report by the Associate Provost for Human Resources

Budget and Academic Professional Development Fund – Sandy Jones indicated there was nothing to report about budget as per Vicki Gress. The APDF have had 50 applications (none declined) for a total of $24, 297.50 (with $50,702.50 remaining).

Background Check Policy UpdatesBackground checks are proceeding; the Committee is meeting right now with Christopher Pierre as Chair. Issues related to classification were discussed, and GUP reactions (faculty not planning to derail, but clarify).

Other – Sandy Jones noted that the required insurance issue is taking effect, with sign-up in November/December; this is a cost to the University, available to those who qualify.

  1. Ad Hoc Committee on By-laws update – Mike Bohlmann noted that the changes (that are beyond just cleaning up language) have not been distributed yet. Attendance will also be addressed, and there was discussion about who individuals would report to, how enforcement would work, and the frequency and validity of missing meetings; related issues included quorum, elections, and record-taking. Mike planned to look into the flexibility of what the Senate provides in their policy.
  1. Ad Hoc Committee on Provost Communications 22 – Jeff Stein noted the Committee began meeting in late October, and have connected with HR and the Provost; they are reaching out to Legal Counsel. Sharon Reynolds will provide paper files of grievances to provide context. The timeline for reporting back to CAP may be by the following meeting.
  1. Unfinished Business – Mike Bohlmann asked for assistance with initial strategic planning thoughts, related to the benefits of the UI systems with regards to the process, with many ideas provided:
  • Solid education to students (Kathleen Booth)
  • Consolidation of resources (Kristina Miller) – President has mentioned consolidation as one item *not* to cover, as he already is addressing this area
  • Student numbers going up, working more with community colleges (Mike Bohlmann)
  • Global and quality issues (Elizabeth Rockman)
  • Voice to the CIC (Kathleen) –noted that UIC is sometimes engaged unofficially with CIC but is not in CIC (UIS not at all)
  • Community college pathways addressed more, particularly with funding stream issue (Rick Atterberry)
  • Communications to stakeholders, including alums, donors, students (Mindy Spencer)
  • Consolidations allow each campus to do what they’re best at (Kathleen)
  • Use new medical school as way to work together (Rick)
  • Have campus strategic plans complement UI plan; compare similar systems (Betoel Escobar)
  • Apply land grant principles to the other two campuses, with broader participation in public engagement (Elizabeth Wahle)
  • Talk about the value of what the system brings to the table (Mike)
  • Reinvigorate alums through Illinois Connection and APs and other employees in Springfield (Mike and Rick)
  • Communicate with state that UI main business draw in state (Rich Gegg)
  1. New Business – Kathleen Booth noted the APDF form needs more clarification, related to applicability to jobs and poor writing. Because it had been discussed previously that no changes would help a lower profile for the funding, it was agreed to leave the information as-is.
  1. Closed Session for Privileged Information/Grievances – None.
  1. Adjournment – Rich Gegg made a motion to adjourn, and Kristina Miller seconded; meeting was adjourned at 2:35 p.m.

District 2 Candidates for CAP Senate Elections

Members of District 2 will receive instructions on voting for one of the following candidates.

Neal Davis
Training Coordinator/Lecturer
Computational Science and Engineering

Statement of Interest:
One of my (and others’) concerns during the recent spate of troubled leadership and stormy state politics is that state higher education and particularly the University of Illinois remain competitive and credible. Clearly academic professional involvement is integral to this objective and I would like to voice AP’s contributions and perspectives. I have long been interested in the theory and operation of universities as they proceed into the 21st century, and feel this is an excellent opportunity to contribute to and guide this discussion at UIUC.

I have experienced the University of Illinois as a graduate student, as a lecturer, and as an AP. I am invested in the University’s future prosperity and in counseling wise governance decisions insofar as these impact our teaching and research activities support (and really, what else is there?). I can contribute a voice towards the graceful integration of modern best practices from industry into our administration and operation as well as a perspective on how science and industrial practice are evolving and intersecting with academia.

Dana Tempel
Assistant Director
College of Engineering, Undergraduate Programs Office

Statement of Interest:
As the Assistant Director of the Center for Academic Resources in Engineering (CARE), I consider myself a strong advocate and resource for student success for undergraduate engineering students. In my position it’s important to have strong relationships with faculty, staff, and students in the College of Engineering but also strong relationships with other offices who offer support and resources to students on campus.

I hope by serving on the Campus Senate committee I could contribute to all the important responsibilities and decisions which impacts our entire campus. I would also look forward to the opportunity to serve as support to all the Academic Professional in Engineering. Thank you in advance for your consideration.

October 1, 2015, Meeting Minutes

Thursday, October 1, 2015, ACES Library
Meeting Minutes submitted by Elizabeth Rockman

Attendees:  Richard Gegg (1), Kristina Miller (1), Kathleen Booth (2), Ramachandran Radhakrishnan (2), Todd Spinner (3), Maeve Reilly (4), Rick Atterberry (5), Wendy White (5), Teresa Steckler (6), Elizabeth Wahle (6), Betoel Escobar (7), Tanisha King-Taylor (7), Tracy Parish (8), Melissa Madsen (9), Mike Bohlmann (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 1:21 p.m.

2.    Public Comment – Kostas Yfantis, former CAP member and Chair/Vice Chair, talked about ongoing collaboration with CITL (the Center for Innovation in Teaching and Learning).

3.    Chair’s Remarks – Mike Bohlmann served as an official observer of the BOT meeting, in addition to his affiliation with UPPAC and SEC, and he noted the following:

  • UI made payroll for August and September.
  • President discussed the issue of the lack of budget, and that it was being considered to turn off power to the Capitol.
  • BOT passed the background check policy, to be implemented soon.
  • Senate restored CAP Chair vote (unanimous to give vote on SEC), which had been assumed in the recent past.
  • On SEC radar:  Chancellor Search and background check policy.
  • President Killeen set up a taskforce for strategic planning, including high-level representation and varied roles.

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

5.    Announcements:

Report from Academic Professional Senators – Outgoing AP Senator Kostas Yfantis discussed the Senate meeting, Chancellor Search, and shared governance issues.  Rich Gegg also noted that the President discussed that he is not wedded to a search firm, and that finalists might be known ahead of time.

Senate, Campus and University Committee Reports – None

6.    Communications Committee – Maeve Reilly had no report.

7.    Procedures and Elections Committee – Details were discussed related to special elections for Districts 2 and 9 (incumbents changed districts).

8.    CAPE Awards – Kristina said the Selection Committee for the selection of CAPE members had sent invitations to finalists.  Additionally, all publicity languages has been vetted, edited, and approved.

9.    Grievance Officer Update – Jeffrey Stein noted Beth Hall provided a written grievance report to Mike Bohlmann in absentia, reported that the Chancellor accepted the decision on the recent grievance, and that the Ad Hoc Committee to review Provost Communication #22 is working on their effort.

10.    Academic Human Resources Report by the Associate Provost for Human Resources
Budget and Academic Professional Development Fund – Elyne Cole noted that APDF has had 37 requests this FY to date, totaling $18,154 have been received, with all approved (none outstanding).  Nothing to report about budget other than that as the time gets longer with a budget, everyone becomes more worried.  UA does not have a freeze (yet), but are not filling positions without specific approval.  There is also no official elimination of positions.  Deans are being more frugal, but not being specifically told what to do with their budgets, as there is no formal budget plan in place.

SUCSS – On September 18, 2015 the SUCSS Merit Board appointed Jeff Brownfield as Executive Director from pool of three finalists.  He is internal to SUCSS, and had previously tried to work well with campuses; it is expected that he will be a strong leader but/and work well with our campus.  Brownfield has already reached out to Darla Hill of UI Auditing regarding concerns about audit procedures.

11.    Ad Hoc Committee on By-laws update – Mike Bohlmann noted that this committee has been working on a draft proposal, and plan to provide for review before the next meeting.

12.    Ad Hoc Committee for AP to serve on Chancellor’s Search – Mike said that there had been a dozen self-nominations for that, and that this committee, comprised of himself, Tracy Parish, Ravi Ramrattan, Elizabeth Rockman would meet to choose two people on the ballot for the AP Senators to vote on (in the same way that faculty senators vote on their representative/s, and student senators on theirs).  The President wants this search to conclude by the Spring 2016 Semester.

13.    Background Check Policy – General discussion:  The timing was meant to start the next week, but Urbana campus was given a delay, which many are confused about whether that means a delay in hiring.  Questions to be addressed:  what is the process in terms of when it happens, what is a delay and what is not?  Elyne Cole notes that the policy was to take place October 5, 2015, and the BOT was allowing a delay for Urbana until November 1, 2015.  She does not anticipate that the process will change with regards to the Senate discussions, but that everything will have to be explained thoroughly.  Officially, the President is not giving direction to the campuses on how to implement the policy; the campuses put forward their own procedures, and the University-wide group does not impact the campuses’ procedures.  There has been a campus-wide committee addressing this for several months.  The three campuses and UA are working with external counsel.  Several training sessions for HR individuals are ongoing.  Deb Stone noted that this policy is for all new employees or returning employees, or for individuals whose positions move to security sensitive or work with children; this includes some Extra Help, Hourly, Academic Hourly, and Grad Hourly positions.  Mike Bohlmann asked about the timing of the offer as these decisions go to campus HR, and then onto the committee that reviews convictions.  Deb noted that the offeree is given the opportunity to contact the vendor regarding accuracy or to provide additional information to the review committee.  Mike noted that it’s also important to know if there are specific risks within a job; can individuals do their job, ie., what are the duties/responsibilities of each job.  Kathleen Booth also pointed out that if something doesn’t impact the initial job, it’s important to parse out if it would impact a second job; is the information saved in a file or eliminated?  Deb noted that this information is not kept in a personnel file, and that it is also not put into HireTouch.  Elizabeth Rockman asked about the general timing of the process, and if hold-ups in that timing would alert the hiring unit.  Deb said that the process does not start until the candidate gives consent, which will change timing for everyone.  Ravi asked if all the places a candidate lives would have to be checked; Elyne confirmed that was the case, but that education would not be checked (that is for search committees to verify).  Rich Gegg asked if there were anything so egregious as to not be considered by the review committee, and Elyne responded there is no automatic trigger, that all individuals have the right to be considered.  It was noted that higher education rates of conviction were generally lower than the national average.  Rick Atterberry discussed situations in which there can be errors, such as a class action lawsuit citing records weren’t expunged, case of mistaken identities, etc.  Deb reiterated that the candidate would be allowed to provide additional context; if a decision is made to withdraw the offer, AHR/SHR sends the letter.  Elyne said that campus went with the best vendor, though not the cheapest.  Kathleen asked about offer language.

14.    Unfinished Business – Mike Bohlmann asked for extra coverage during All Employee Expo, as he would be teaching a class; Wendy White offered to help after checking her schedule.

15.    New Business – None.

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

17.    Adjournment – Ravi made a motion to adjourn, and Tanisha King-Taylor seconded; meeting was adjourned at 3:15 p.m.

Agenda for November 2015 Monthly Meeting

Date: Thursday, November 5
Time: 1:15 PM
Location: 407 Illini Union

  1.  Call to Order
  2. Public Comment
  3. Chair’s Remarks
  4. Review and Approval Previous Month’s Minutes
  5. Announcements
    • Report from Academic Professional Senators
    • Senate, Campus and University Committee Reports
  6. Communications Committee
  7. Procedures and Elections Committee
  8. CAPE Awards
  9. Grievance Officer update
  10. Academic Human Resources Report Associate Provost for Human Resources
    • Budget Update
    • Academic Professional Development Fund
    • Background check policy updates
    • Other
  11. Ad hoc committee on by-laws updates
  12. Ad hoc committee on Provost Communications 22
  13. Unfinished Business
  14. New Business
  15. CLOSED SESSION – Privileged Information/Grievances (if applicable)
  16. Adjournment