20 days after request, Doug Park produces Burnside AAEO contract


Full doc here. This is far short of the full investigation of Penny Daugherty’s operation of this office that is needed. Presumably the Senate will now have to vote for the administration to do this properly.

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7/15/2015: UO uncertain if it has public records on AA investigator Burnside

Dear Mr. Harbaugh: 

The University of Oregon, Office of Public Records has received your public records request for “a copy of the contract (or charge or other public records describing the scope of work and payment terms) between UO (or UO’s law firm or other representative) and Rebecca Burnside (or her firm) for an investigation of UO’s Affirmative Action office”, on 07/10/2015, attached. The university is uncertain whether it possesses the records you have requested.  However, the university will search for the records and make a response to your request as soon as practicable. …

Lisa Thornton

Office of Public Records
University of Oregon

Office of the President

This seems a little weird. Nice of them to keep looking though. There must be something in someone’s email, even if they are running the contract through a law firm.

7/10/2015: Will Rebecca Burnside’s AAEO investigation be real, or a whitewash?

Given the troubled history of UO’s “independent investigations” it’s a reasonable question. So let’s ask Doug Park for records showing just what it is that he charged her to do:

Subject: Public records request, AAEO investigation
Date: July 10, 2015 at 3:51:27 PM PDT
To: Lisa Thornton <pubrec@uoregon.edu> Cc: Doug Park <dougpark@uoregon.edu>

Dear Ms Thornton –

This is a public records request for a copy of the contract (or charge or other public records describing the scope of work and payment terms) between UO (or UO’s law firm or other representative) and Rebecca Burnside (or her firm) for an investigation of UO’s Affirmative Action office.

I ask for a fee waiver on the basis of public interest.

I’m ccing Interim GC Doug Park, as he should have these documents easily at hand.

Update: Investigator asks UO employees for info on affirmative action problems

From a comment by “employees only”:

I’ve learned that Rebecca Burnside has been contracted to conduct an investigation of the affirmative action department. After stating that she would like to cast as wide a net as possible, she later clarified that she will not look into student-related matters. Still, she has expressed interest in speaking to as many employees as possible who may have information for her report. To that end, she can be reached at rebecca@its-personnel.com. I’ve heard that her request is to spread the word, please!

Rebecca Burnside is an attorney and HR consultant, website here. Still waiting for the official “Around the 0″ announcement.

7/9/2015: UO starts investigation of affirmative action office problems

That’s the rumor down at the faculty club breakfast table. Given AAEO Director Penny Daugherty’s famously incompetent management, this is hardly a surprise. Presumably there will be an announcement from the UO administration soon – I think AAEO reports to VPFA Jamie Moffitt.

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Prosecutor and Trustee says university police force should be disbanded

The NYT has the sad story, here:

A University of Cincinnati police officer was indicted Wednesday on a murder charge in what a prosecutor called “a senseless, asinine shooting” during a minor traffic stop. It was the first time such a charge had been leveled against an officer in the city.

The Hamilton County prosecuting attorney, Joseph T. Deters, released a much-anticipated video of the shooting of Samuel Dubose, which he described as crucial evidence that the officer, Ray Tensing, had lied about being dragged by Mr. Dubose’s car. A grand jury, Mr. Deters announced, indicted Officer Tensing on a murder charge, punishable by life in prison, and a voluntary manslaughter charge.

… Mr. Deters said that the university police force should be disbanded because policing is not what a university knows how to do, and that the campus should be patrolled by the Cincinnati Police Department. He said he had discussed the matter with the city police chief and the university.

The fate of the university is a matter close to Mr. Deters’s heart. He earned his undergraduate and law degrees there and formerly sat on its board of trustees.

“This doesn’t happen in the United States, O.K.?” he said. “People don’t get shot for a traffic stop.”

Which raises the question of what sort of oversight UO has over it’s new sworn and armed police department. After this RG Op-Ed  from John Ahlen and Juan Carlos Valle called for a UOPD review system, I got curious and made this public records request:

This is a public records request for copies of any “minutes, agendas, reports, and correspondence” involving “boards and councils that function in an advisory capacity, standing and ad hoc committees and councils” that primarily involve the UOPD. This request covers the period from 1/1/2011 to the present.

More than a month, and still no response from Dave Hubin’s Public Record’s Office. Not exactly trust inspiring.

We do know a little bit about how much it cost UO to switch from a public safety department – about $1M a year. Actually, more. It appears the UOPD blew through its budget – those new SUV’s don’t come cheap – and has had to hit up the central administration’s “Strategic Initiatives” project for new software:

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Where does the strategic initiatives money come from? The tuition revenue that Brad Shelton has clawed back from the CAS budget. (And it’s going for sports products? Really? I thought we were told a donor was waiting to pay for that.)

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Bargaining session XVII: Administration still lowballing faculty

Sorry, I’m teaching summer camp so no UO M live-blog. The faculty union is live-blogging on Facebook, though. Their info on the administration’s counter-offer from today:

Admin proposal:

FY16: 1% ATB.

FY17: 2.5% Merit (with dean’s withholding 20%).

FY18: 3% Merit (again 20% withheld) 

That’s 6.5% spread out over 3.5 years. (Plus about 1% per year for promotion raises.) Last year raises at our comparators were 3.4%, and it looks like they will be about that again this year. Our administration is offering 1% (plus promotions). I’m no macroeconomist, but I hear that the Federal Reserve Bank’s Open Market Committee has an inflation target of 2%.

The union proposal is for 10% raises over 3.5 years (plus promotions) split between ATB, merit, and equity. The two sides are a long ways apart and there are no more sessions scheduled until August 12.

Meanwhile the administration’s PR flacks still haven’t retracted their claim that UO faculty compensation is now *above* the Senate White Paper target. Come on. And while the administration’s own data shows the serious external equity issues for fulls, the administration’s proposal includes zip for equity. And don’t get me started on the unicorn.

So it seems likely we will still be bargaining when classes start September 28th. Will the faculty strike? Not in September. As you may recall from the GTFF strike there’s a long period of impasse, arbitration, votes, and so on before a full-blown strike can be called.

Some quick googling shows this for 2015-16 raises at some AAU publics and some nearby universities:

University of California system: Faculty will get a 3% ATB raise, in addition to the regular step/promotion raises, which are about 2.5%. (https://ap.ucsb.edu/compensation.and.benefits/ucsb.salary.scales/ and http://www.dailycal.org/2014/03/16/uc-academic-employees-receive-3-percent-salary-increase/)

University of Colorado: 3% (http://communique.uccs.edu/?p=18303)

UVA: 2% ATB plus regular promotion raises: http://www.newsplex.com/home/headlines/Virginia-Lawmakers-Approve-Budget-with-State-Pay-Raises-294256111.html

University of Illinois: 3% plus usual promotion raises of $7,000 and $10,000. http://www.ahr.illinois.edu/FY15BudgetGuidelines.pdf

University of Indiana: 2% plus up to 1.5% merit, plus promotion raises: http://president.iu.edu/initiatives/monthly-update/2015/index.shtml

Iowa State: Up to 1% merit plus promotion raises: http://www.inside.iastate.edu/article/2015/05/14/fy16parameters

Ohio State: 2% plus 1% one-time merit pool plus up to 10% for promotionshttp://www.hr.msu.edu/recognition/facacadstaff/payfaculty/acadsalaryadjust.htm

Michigan State: 3.5% merit plus promotionshttp://www.hr.msu.edu/recognition/facacadstaff/payfaculty/acadsalaryadjust.htm

Penn State: 3% merit plus promotions, near as I can tell: http://budget.psu.edu/President/AppropRequest201415/BOT%20-%20Sept%20SAR-%20FINAL.docx

Purdue: ?

Rutgers: 2% plus 10% promotion raises: http://www.rutgersaaup.org/sites/default/files/images/ArticleVIII_0.pdf

SUNY Stony Brook: 2.5% plus promotions

Texas A&M: TBA.

University of Florida: Bargaining now, faculty asking for 6.5% plus promotions: http://www.gainesville.com/article/20150629/articles/150629672?p=1&tc=pg

University of Minnesota: 2% plus promotions: http://www1.umn.edu/ohr/prod/groups/ohr/@pub/@ohr/documents/asset/ohr_asset_497181.pdf

University of Washington: They’ve got a proposal but I don’t know what’s happening with it: http://www.washington.edu/faculty/senate/issues/salary-policy-proposal-faq/

 Non AAU:

Washington State: 4% merit pool for 1/1/2015 raises. http://budget.wsu.edu/documents/Q%20%20A%20MSI%2015-Version%203.pdf?0.7134609038475901

University of Idaho: 3% (Yes, we’re losing out to Idaho.) http://www.uidaho.edu/~/media/Files/administration/Provost/policy/Salary%20and%20Consulting/FY16/FY2016.ashx

Post a comment if you find more, but it looks like 3.4% is ballpark for next year too.

For UO,  the number will be 0%. (Plus promotion raises for those eligible, averaging about 1%). This is because our administration wants to delay raises until January 1, instead of July 1 as in the current contract. This is a bonehead move: by delaying the raises past October, they won’t show up in the AAU and AAUDE data, which in turn feeds into the US News rankings. (Yes, faculty pay goes into the USNews rankings algorithm).

The 2011 Lariviere/Coltrane plan would have increased average UO salaries by rank and discipline to peer averages by 2014. Coltrane abandoned the plan when he became Provost, and the administration has repeatedly rejected the faculty union’s external equity proposals, despite some big deviations between UO pay and what faculty earn at our peers. These deviations are largest for full professors, as over time it becomes more costly for faculty to move, and UO’s monopsony bargaining power starts to bite more. Our AAU peers are typically in larger labor markets, and therefore their salaries are more reflective of “the market rate”, if you’re into that perfect competition thing.

All the 2014-15 data is now posted on UO’s IR page: http://ir.uoregon.edu/sites/ir.uoregon.edu/files/UOwithAAUPublicsbyDept_2014-15.pdf. Unfortunately there are still no good comparator data for NTTF’s, although the AAUP is working on this. As always, check the footnotes. While UO counts one-time faculty excellence awards in pay, it is not clear how many if any of our comparators do. Also, a colleague checked the Econ data and found one full professor was miscoded as associate. This doesn’t affect the full percentages, but it means that the % of AAU salary for UO Econ associates should be 82%, not 92%. Yikes.

Here are a few cherry picked departments, in no particular order:

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Rogue archivist terrorizes legislature

The LA Times has the story here:

Government officials have threatened “rogue archivist” Carl Malamud with legal action many times for his efforts to make public government documents widely available for free, but the state of Georgia has set a new standard for fighting this ridiculous battle: It’s suing Malamud for infringing its copyright of state laws by — horrors — publishing them online.

The state’s lawsuit, filed last week in Atlanta federal court, accuses Malamud of piracy — and worse, of “a form of ‘terrorism.'” His offense: Through his website, public.resource.org, he provides members of the public access to a searchable and downloadable scan of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated — that is, the entire body of state law. The state wants a court order forcing Malamud to stop.

Malamud is the man who got the State of Oregon to waive copyright claims on its laws, liberated the SEC’s EDGAR database, and has an guerrilla army of RECAP users sniping away at the federal court’s PACER database. For example, you can get most of the docs regarding Jane Doe’s lawsuit against Dana Altman et al here.

But I’ll forever be in Carl’s debt for taking the heat off me when I posted my “free and illegal” pdf copy of the Oregon DOJ’s Public Record’s Manual on my UO server, despite the copyright warnings from then AG John Kroger. Carl drove up from CA to Salem, bought his own copy, ground off the binding with a belt-sander, put the pages through a sheet fed scanner, posted it at public.resource.org, and then sent Kroger this letter:

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A few months later Kroger caved, and the Oregon DOJ now posts the manual online, at http://www.doj.state.or.us/public_records/pages/index.aspx. Reporters tell me it’s a very helpful resource for getting public records, and one of the reasons the Oregon chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists gave me their “First Freedom” award and royally pissed of then SOJC Dean Tim Gleason. Fun times.

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Will “Around the O” retract claims re Senate Salary White Paper?

The administration’s economic counterproposals are due at Bargaining Session XVII, Tuesday at 9AM in the Knight Library. This probably explains the anonymous blog post on “Around the O” about salaries. The full post is at the bottom. The gist is that the official organ of the UO administration is claiming UO has exceeded the Senate goals, right before their bargaining team makes the administration’s economic counter-proposal:

The UO Senate Budget Committee outlined in 2000 and 2008 white papers a specific goal of having average faculty compensation be at 95 percent of AAU peers. In 2014-15, full professors were at 95.4 percent of AAU public peers, while associate professors were at 101.6 percent and assistant professors at 104.1 percent. Adjusted for cost-of-living factors, the figures are 101.0, 109.8 and 112.7 percent, respectively.

… It’s important to look at total compensation when it comes to making comparisons to our AAU peers,” Moffitt said. “The UO picks up 95 percent of our employees’ healthcare premiums and makes generous contributions to retirement accounts. When those numbers are factored in, it shows a more holistic and accurate view of total faculty compensation.”

That’s quite a bit less than the whole truth. So I’m writing Around the O Editor Julie Brown and her boss Tim Clevenger asking for a correction:

Dear Ms Brown and Mr. Clevenger:

I am writing to Ms Brown in her capacity as editor of the “Around the O” blog, and to Mr. Clevenger as her boss, regarding the July 23rd post on the UO Around the O blog titled “UO faculty compensation competitive with other public AAUs, reaches target set by senate”.

This article is posted at https://around.uoregon.edu/content/uo-faculty-compensation-competitive-other-public-aaus-reaches-target-set-senate. The article misreports two important and easily verifiable facts about the 2008 UO Senate White Paper update, and it ignores an important economic distinction between the cost and the value of benefits. Quoting from the story, with emphasis added:

The UO Senate Budget Committee outlined in 2000 and 2008 white papers a specific goal of having average faculty compensation be at 95 percent of AAU peers. In 2014-15, full professors were at 95.4 percent of AAU public peers, while associate professors were at 101.6 percent and assistant professors at 104.1 percent. Adjusted for cost-of-living factors, the figures are 101.0, 109.8 and 112.7 percent, respectively.

This part is correct. The goal for the 2000 White Paper was indeed to get UO salary + benefits to 95% of our comparators. Quoting from the report, here: http://darkwing.uoregon.edu/~uosenate/dirsen990/SBCfinal.html:

Average instructional faculty compensation (salary + benefits) will be brought to 95% of parity to our comparator institutions. To accomplish this goal, we recommend that average faculty compensation be increased a minimum of 2.5% per year over and above the performance of our comparators until we achieve the 95% goal. We estimate that it will take 5-7 years to reach 95% parity.

However this is not true of the 2008 Senate Budget Committee update, as the article claims. That report, which the author of the Around the O article references and links to, but apparently didn’t read, had a goal of getting UO faculty salaries to 100% of comparators. Quoting from http://pages.uoregon.edu/uosenate/dircom/0708WhitePaperUpdate.html:

The 2007-08 Senate Budget Committee (Marie Vitulli (chair), Peter Keyes, Mike Kellman, David Frank, Suzanne Clark, John Chalmers, Gordon Sayre (ex officio)) calls for the university to take immediate steps to bring our faculty’s salaries up to the average (mean) relative to our comparators. 

The average would mean 100% of AAU peers, not 95%. Both Around the O errors, about the percentile target and the inclusion of benefit costs, matter. The significance of the difference between 95% and 100% is obvious. The difference between salary + benefits and salary alone matters because, as the story points out, if we count the cost of benefits UO faculty are not doing that badly. If we look at salary alone, we are relatively worse off. The 2008 White Paper update addresses the distinction, in explaining why they set a salary rather than salary + benefits target:

We recognize that there have been many mitigating circumstances in this period, that the cost (while not necessarily the benefit) of the benefits package has increased, that state salaries have been frozen, that the administration has labored mightily to keep the university afloat in what are (seemingly always) tough times.  But this does not change the fact that the faculty have actually lost ground.  If the percentage growth in faculty salaries had simply matched the percentage growth of 59.8% in the university base budget, we would already be at 95% of our comparators’ salaries.

At UO, the cost of benefits is considerably higher than their value. For example, the state has insisted that universities stay in the health insurance pool for other state workers, despite the fact we could get a much cheaper rate if we split off. VPFA Jaime Moffitt counts the cost of this subsidy for the state as a valuable benefit to faculty. It’s not. Similarly with PERS: a good part of the current cost is to make up for the years of underfunding and loopholes that let people retire at pensions of 100% of salary and more. Those loopholes have been fixed, and recent and future retirees will get far smaller retirements, even if in Tiers 1 and 2. (ORP is another matter.) PERS is still underfunded because of past problems and things like Mike Bellotti’s $500K a year PERS deal, and PERS costs are indeed high. However, the costs of paying the inflated pensions of others are not a benefit of value to current faculty. This is presumably part of the reason why President Lariviere and CAS Dean Scott Coltrane reacted to the 2009 news that UO faculty salaries were at the bottom of the AAU by instituting a plan to get salaries up to the comparator average by 2011.

In short, in addition to the two factual errors identifed above, the quote from VPFA Jamie Moffitt claiming that including benefit costs “shows a more holistic and accurate view of total faculty compensation” deserves some explanation and qualification along the lines explained above.

I would appreciate it if you would have the author of this “Around the O” article write a correction addressing these factual errors and the distinction between benefit costs and value.

You might also consider requiring your authors put their names to this and future Around the O articles, as an effort to build some credibility for your blog.


Bill Harbaugh, UO professor of Economics, and editor and author of http://uomatters.com

The entire “Around the O” blog post:

UO faculty compensation competitive with other public AAUs, reaches target set by senate

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Faculty union and CAS Dean Marcus criticize UO’s spending priorities

Both letters are remarkably restrained, considering how badly Moffitt, Shelton, Coltrane, and Gottfredson have screwed things up. The letter from Michael Dreiling (Soc) and Chris Sinclair (Math) of United Academics and signed by 340 UO faculty is in the RG today, here. Read it all, here’s a brief extract:

In May, The Register-Guard ran a story about the University of Oregon’s new $20 million branding campaign to boost the university’s academic image. The story generated a significant amount of comment on campus and in the community, with many left wondering if $20 million couldn’t be better spent on the academic programs themselves.

… Meanwhile, the university continues spending money in ways that pit one academic priority against another, often inexplicably and without transparency. For instance, rather than drawing resources from the growing pool of unrestricted reserves, millions were diverted toward the UO Law School to offset sagging enrollments — while simultaneously, the College of Arts and Sciences was forced to manage a deficit with austerity, compromising core academic programs. These were rainy days, so why were the reserves not tapped to meet the needs of both colleges?

Johnson Hall has been trying to sweep these problems under the rug for a long time. Here’s a letter from acting CAS Andrew Marcus to former President Mike Gottfredson, last January, laying out the problems with UO’s budgeting process. From what I’ve heard Coltrane did nothing to deal with these issues as Interim Provost, or as Interim President:

CAS budget 2014

Full four page pdf here.

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Heavily subsidized Duck coach has 10 year plan to break even

No, of course I’m not talking about basketball coach Dana Altman – he’s a lost cause. I’m talking about women’s volleyball coach Jim Moore. RG columnist Austin Meek has the story here:

On paper, Moore acknowledged, the task looks daunting. According to financial documents filed with the U.S. Department of Education, Oregon’s volleyball program generated $387,000 in revenue and $1.6 million in expenses for 2013-14.

This program does give out 13 full-ride scholarships, apparently almost all to out of state-students. Let’s see, he’s losing $1.3M per year, so each scholarship costs UO $100,000. So we could eliminate volleyball and give out 50 full-ride scholarships to Oregon residents selected on the basis of academic merit or need. We’d have to drop a men’s sport too of course, because of Title IX. How about baseball? That would be another 150 scholarships, easy.

Meanwhile Altman is losing about $3M a year, or 120 merit/need scholarships. And that doesn’t count the Knight Arena bond payments.

I had to file a few public records petitions with the Oregon Department of Justice to make it happen, but Rob Mullens and the Athletic Department are now very transparent about finances – coach contracts here, NCAA docs and once secret MOU’s here:

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Has President Schill found a replacement for Doug Park?

I don’t know.  Word is that there will be multiple finalists, visiting campus soon, application materials posted by the end of next week. Sounds good.

The job is no longer listed on the active administrative listing here, and the ad itself is now watermarked as an archive. But there’s been no announcement of finalists or public dissemination of application letters. The rudimentary General Counsel’s page still lists Doug Park as Interim GG.

Meanwhile there is an opening for an assistant for Public Records Officer Lisa Thornton, here. UO Employees only – definitely wouldn’t want to take a chance on getting someone with new ideas into that office. Speaking of which, they’ve got a pretty extensive backlog of unfilled requests.

Request Date Title Requester Status
07/23/2015 Student Fees Kimbrell, Jacob Requesting/Reviewing Records
07/22/2015 Contract Ahlen, John Requesting/Reviewing Records
07/20/2015 Athletic Contracts Rhoden, Jaleesa Records Provided
07/16/2015 Software Anderson, Angelina Requesting/Reviewing Records
07/16/2015 UOPD Boone, Mario No Responsive Records
07/16/2015 Compliance Correspondence Mattioli, Kami Requesting/Reviewing Records
07/15/2015 Directory Howe, Kevin Requesting/Reviewing Records
07/14/2015 Donations Jacoby, Kenny Requesting/Reviewing Records
07/14/2015 Contract Harbaugh, William Requesting/Reviewing Records
07/13/2015 Solar Energy Projects Wilker, Steven Requesting/Reviewing Records
07/13/2015 Reviews Paulson, Lauren Awaiting Payment
07/09/2015 Brand Contracts Axon, Rachel Requesting/Reviewing Records
07/07/2015 President Records Harbaugh, William Requesting/Reviewing Records
07/07/2015 University Expenditures Hill, Toni Requesting/Reviewing Records
07/07/2015 Correspondence Martin, Nick Records Exempt From Disclosure
07/06/2015 Coach Contract Baumbach, Jim Records Provided
07/02/2015 NCAA Violations Greif, Andrew Requesting/Reviewing Records
07/02/2015 Purchase Contract Willis, Amy Requesting/Reviewing Records
07/02/2015 UO Foundation Harbaugh, William No Responsive Records
07/01/2015 Coach Contracts Hawthorne, Jonathan Records Provided
07/01/2015 Coach Contracts Shifflett, Shane Records Provided
07/01/2015 Student Directory Asari, David Requesting/Reviewing Records
06/30/2015 Coach Contracts Goldstick, Robert Records Provided
06/30/2015 BANNER Statements Harbaugh, Bill No Responsive Records
06/30/2015 Earthquake Certifications McGraw, Noah No Responsive Records
06/29/2015 RFP Tritsch, Geoffrey Requesting/Reviewing Records
06/25/2015 Football Contracts Berkowitz, Steve Records Provided
06/23/2015 UOPD Correspondence Harbaugh, Bill Requesting/Reviewing Records
06/22/2015 Mirror Epstein Johnson, Mark Requesting/Reviewing Records
06/19/2015 Compliance Emails Epstein, David Requesting/Reviewing Records
06/19/2015 BANNER Reports Harbaugh, Bill Records Provided
06/18/2015 Animals In Research Agundez, Juan Awaiting Payment
06/18/2015 Parking Revenue and Citation Totals Campuzano, Eder Records Provided
06/15/2015 Sightlines Study Dietz, Diane Requesting/Reviewing Records
06/15/2015 Employment Contracts & Salary Cohen, Kevin Records Provided
06/15/2015 2021 IAAF World Championship Wihtol, Christian Awaiting Payment
06/10/2015 Economics Dept. Salaries Costello, Brandon Records Provided
06/10/2015 RFP Responses – Course Scheduler Conner, Brett No Responsive Records
06/10/2015 Softball Coach Contract Greif, Andrew Records Provided
06/10/2015 Softball Coach Contract Hawthorne, Jonathan Records Provided

6/1/2015 update: New Pres Mike Schill takes UO’s General Counsel bull by the horns

Explanation for new VPGC position here, ad here, review begins June 26.

General Statement of Duties

The Vice President and General Counsel to the University (VPGC) is the chief legal officer for the University of Oregon, a senior advisor to the President of the University (President), and an officer of the university. The VPGC will be responsible for managing the university’s legal affairs, overseeing the office’s provision of legal services to the university (including the provision of any outside legal services retained on behalf of the university), and supervising the Office of the General Counsel, which includes other attorneys and support staff. In addition, the VPGC will oversee the University’s Office of Public Records and the University’s Records Management Services, including supervision of employees in those two functions. As a member of the president’s senior leadership team, the VPGC will work closely with the president and other executive officers on a wide array of matters of legal import to the institution. In addition, the VPGC will work closely with university units, programs (e.g. student government), and employees. …

While Lariviere had taken responsibility for public records away from Melinda Grier and Doug Park in the GC’s office because of conflict of interest concerns coming out of the Bellotti fiasco, in practice that independence was a sham. So perhaps it’s best to acknowledge that the conflict exists and set up procedures to deal with it.

5/27/2015 update:

Schill is going to totally reorganize the General Counsel’s office and restart the search for a “VP for Legal Affairs” to take charge of UO’s troubled legal matters. This is the best UO news I’ve heard in long time, and we all hope it will be the first in a series of efforts to reform Johnson Hall. It’s certainly a great start to an improved relationship with the faculty.

Meanwhile UO’s website seems to think Randy Geller is still in charge. (Link finally removed today, 11 months after Geller was resigned.)

5/218/2015: General Counsel search committee soliciting anonymous comments

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VSU pays $900K for violating student’s 1st Amendment right to mock Univ. President

7/23/2015: The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education wins another one:

ATLANTA, July 23, 2015—Today, more than eight years after his unjust expulsion, student Hayden Barnes’ federal civil rights lawsuit against Georgia’s Valdosta State University (VSU) and former VSU president Ronald Zaccari concluded with the announcement of a $900,000 settlement. 

In the spring of 2007, Barnes was expelled from VSU by Zaccari for a satirical environmentalist collage he posted on his personal Facebook page. With the help of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), Barnes fought back by filing a civil rights lawsuit in 2008 against the university, Zaccari, other VSU administrators, and the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia. 

“After eight years, and one of the worst abuses of student rights FIRE has ever seen, Hayden Barnes has finally received justice,” said FIRE President and CEO Greg Lukianoff. “Thanks to Hayden’s courageous stand, would-be censors at public universities nationwide have 900,000 new reasons to respect the free speech and due process rights of their students.”

“I am pleased to have finally reached a resolution. It has been an epic journey,” said Barnes. “However, it was a worthwhile endeavor because I know as a result of this case other students will have their constitutional rights respected. I sincerely appreciate the work of my counsel and of FIRE, both of whom were instrumental in achieving justice.”Barnes’ years-long ordeal began on May 7, 2007, when Zaccari—angry with Barnes’ peaceful protest against the planned construction of two parking garages on campus—expelled him without a hearing. Absurdly, Zaccari tried to justify Barnes’ expulsion by claiming that a cut-and-paste collage Barnes had posted to Facebook was a “threatening document” and that Barnes presented a “clear and present danger” to VSU. …

Meanwhile UO is still on FIRE’s redlight list for free speech. We’ve got a great policy, but as you can see below some administrators are a little confused about what free speech means:

8/28/2014 update: UO drops “I hit it first” charges but keeps them on student’s permanent record

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University offers faculty 3% ATB and 2% merit, spread over two years

That was the opening offer from Mike “The University” Gottfredson on March 3, 2013:

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Sharon Rudnick told us this was a take it or leave it ultimatum offer. VPFA Jamie Moffitt came to a bargaining session to tell the faculty that there was no more money, but fled the session when forensic accountant Howard Bunsis started asking her about UO’s reserves.

The union ignored Rudnick’s non-credible threat and kept bargaining, and bargaining, and bargaining. It was a long angry summer. A few days before fall classes started the administration finally agreed to a 5.5% retroactive raise, and another 6% starting July 2014. Plus $350 in goat money. Call it 6% a year. Substantial as they were, even these raises were not enough to meet the Lariviere/Coltrane target of getting average salaries by department and rank to the AAU public averages by 2014. Meanwhile AAU pay has been increasing, last year by 3.4%.

So was Moffitt right? Did these raises break UO? Not according to Moody’s bond raters, who report UO’s unrestricted reserves grew from $77M to $116M and gave us an Aa2 rating, meaning “Obligations rated Aa are judged to be of high quality and are subject to very low credit risk.”

This time the university administration opened with a proposal to give everyone $600 in Chevy Van money, followed 0% for FY 16 and 1% for FY 17. Jamie Moffitt even came to a bargaining session again, to tell us, again, that there was no more money, so the union brought Howard Bunsis back to call bullshit on that claim again, via powerpoint.

The most recent proposal from the union is for 10%, spread out over 3 years. Some ATB, some merit, some external equity. The administration’s counter-proposal is due this Tuesday July 28th, 9AM Knight Library.

Last time it took XLI bargaining sessions to get a contract. This time we’re on session XVI, and it’s beginning to look like this thing is going to drag on for quite a while.

Here’s the latest UAUO bargaining update:

We had a productive bargaining session on Friday, exchanging a total of ten articles between us.

The main focus of the session was our economic proposal. Over the past few months, the two teams have been talking about how we can find a mutually satisfactory agreement on economics.  We maintain that the university has plenty of resources to provide faculty robust raises and that doing so would demonstrate a willingness to walk the talk of academic excellence.  So far the administration’s paltry proposal of 3% over 2 years shows no such intention of honoring the hard work of faculty. The administration team  continues to suggest that there is not a lot of money to be had for faculty raises over the next two years. We have consistently replied that faculty deserve a salary increase and a cost-of-living adjustments so we don’t lose what ground we’ve gained relative to our peers We have also consistently bargained to address uncompetitive salary floors, internal and external equity problems, and the need to reward meritorious work.

When two parties in collective bargaining find they have competing interests that appear unresolvable, there are two main options: finding creative paths to a middle ground, or making bargaining about power. The power of a labor union, of course, comes from the unity of the membership and their willingness to act together to show their employer that not meeting the union’s demands will be damaging to the employer. This shift from problem solving to power brokering typically happens when the two parties just cannot reach agreement at the table. The exercise of this type of power can be fraught with conflict, long-term loss of good will, and other unintended consequences.

Our bargaining team does not believe negotiations have broken down to the point where bargaining has become about who has the power and who can compel the other side to accept a proposal. We are still having productive conversations. But, unfortunately, we are quickly running out of negotiating room on economics. So far, as we have seen, the administration has only proposed a 3% raise over two years. This is laughably inadequate, frustrating, and insulting. In an effort to continue to have productive conversation and find agreement this summer, the bargaining team decided to explore creative options before declaring an end to productive bargaining.

One of the key themes of our bargaining platform is stability, normalizing raises instead of relying on the “boom and bust” cycle that existed at the UO for so many years. At one point in our conversations with the administration team, it was suggested that maybe we could add a third year onto the contract so that we would not “always” seem to be in bargaining mode. We decided to propose adding a third year to the collective bargaining agreement, both so we could feasibly secure our COLA, equity, and merit goals, but also so we could achieve some stability in knowing that we would be securing a decent raise for a third year.

The following is an outline of our new wage proposal (full proposal here):

FY16 (July 1, 2015-June 30, 2016) – 2.0% COLA, 3% increase to salary floors

FY17 – 1.5% COLA, 1.5% equity, 3% increase to salary floors

FY18 – 1% COLA, 4% merit, and a 4% increase to salary floors

This would be an average of a 10% total raise spread out over 3 years, with a concurrent 10% increase to the salary floors.

We believe that this is a healthy and sustainable wage package. However, this is also close enough to our very bottom line that bargaining could wrap up quickly, which is the goal. But if that is not the case, we will be looking to carry bargaining into the fall and trying other tactics. Stay posted. The administration team seemed amenable to a third year on the Agreement, but we will not know if our attempt to resolve bargaining this summer was successful until we see their next proposal.

Our next session is scheduled for July 28 at 9 am in the Knight Library Collaboration Center, Room 122.

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UO President Michael Schill is the one person who can make it happen

That’s the closing line from LCB Prof. Dennis Howard’s Op-Ed on Duck Athletics and UO, in the RG on Sunday and online here. The RG comments are pretty interesting as well. Prof. Howard and I had a panel discussion on athletic funding at the Eugene City Club in June, there’s more on that here.

I don’t agree with all of this Op-Ed. In particular there are many more hidden subsidies, and I think efforts to use Duck football to market UO academic’s side will probably be expensive and embarrassing failures. But the conclusion sure resonates:

… We can also do a better job of using athletics as an asset in our academic fundraising efforts. The Duck Athletic Fund must be fully integrated into the UO’s academic capital campaign.

Ohio State University provides an excellent model. There, athletic and academic fundraising personnel are rewarded for working together. Attractive athletic assets such as preferred seating for football and basketball are used to reward donors who give to academics as well as to athletics.

Athletics is the UO’s gateway to giving. Historically, 70 percent of those who give more than a $1,000 a year to the academic programs first gave to athletics. Importantly, a significant number of these donors eventually commit a sizeable share of their giving to academics.

Recently this trend has declined. To harness the power of our academic and athletic programs the UO needs a unified fundraising model in which athletic and academic fundraising units work collaboratively on behalf of the entire institution.

UO President Michael Schill is the one person who can make it happen.

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President Schill makes yet another sensible decision

It’s a bit early to say that he’s broken the curse of Johnson Hall, but what with the General Counsel’s reorganization, the 5 searches for deans and a new VP for Research, the JH staff reorganization, and now the restart of the problematic search for an Assistant VP for Sexual Assault [sic] announced below, it is starting to look like a possibility. Back on April 2nd I posted this:

Both the Senate Force and Gottfredson/Coltrane’s hand-picked “Independent Review Panel” proposed an independent administrator who could take responsibility for sexual assault prevention and response away from the manipulative VP Robin Holmes and UO’s incompetent Director of Affirmative Action, Penny Daugherty. Those recommendations are here:

Senate Task Force on Sexual Violence Prevention: Website and Final Report.

Gottfredson and Coltrane’s handpicked “independent” review panel. Website and Final Report.

Apparently Coltrane and Bronet did not consult with either group, and let Robin Holmes write the rather unfortunate job title and the job description. The new AVP will be under Holmes’s thumb, and unlikely to challenge her mistakes and obfuscations.

Today President Schill restarted the search. Less offensive title, strong preference for someone with a JD, direct report to the president (another to Robin Holmes, alas) and our famously incompetent Title IX investigator Penny Daugherty will report to whomever is hired. Letter to the faculty below, job ad here:

Revised Posting

Title:  Associate Vice President & Title IX Coordinator (AVP/TIXC)
Department:  Office of the Vice President for Student Life and Office of the President
FTE:  1.0 (full-time)
Appointment Type:  Officer of Administration
Reports to:  Vice President for Student Life and President
Salary range: $105,000-130,000 annually, plus an excellent benefits package
Duration:  12 months, renewable annually
Closing Date:  Search will remain open until filled; application review begins August 17, 2015
Start Date:  negotiable

General Statement of Duties

The Associate Vice President & Title IX Coordinator (AVP/TIXC) reports to the Vice President for Student Life and to the President.    The person in this position will be the senior administrator responsible for coordinating effective campus-wide efforts in compliance with Title IX, including responsibility for overseeing a comprehensive campus-wide strategic plan to reduce sexual assault in all forms, providing supervision of deputy Title IX officers and any Title IX investigations, and for ensuring institutional accountability in effectively responding to reported concerns and complaints.

The AVP/TIXC will supervise the Title IX-related work of the Deputy Title IX Coordinator for Complaint Investigation who has primary responsibility for overseeing the investigation and resolution of Title IX reports and complaints, and the Deputy Title IX Coordinator for Athletics, who has primary responsibility for overseeing gender equity in athletics. Working across multiple portfolios, the AVP/TIXC will have the authority and expectation to guide efforts and direct staff in order to achieve the University’s objective of reducing or eliminating sexual harassment and sexual violence on campus.

The AVP/TIXC coordinates the Sexual Assault Advisory Council, is the lead administrator for the President’s Title IX Advisory Committee, and is expected to cultivate and maintain strong working relationships with key personnel in all areas of the university, including but not limited to the deputy Title IX coordinators, the Associate Dean of Students/Executive Director for Prevention and Response, and staff in the Office of Affirmative Action, Student Conduct and Community Standards, Dean of Students Office, University Health and Counseling Centers, UOPD and the Office of the General Counsel.

Description of Duties


Coordinate and assess the new Ducks Do Something Initiative designed to fight sexual violence on campus.

With broad collaboration and input, create a comprehensive strategic plan that will guide the university’s efforts to reduce sexual harassment, including sexual assault, stalking, intimate partner and relationship violence, and sex-based bullying (hereafter sexual harassment), in all forms.

Advise the vice president and president on policy and organizational issues regarding all forms of sexual harassment. Assist in establishing priorities and agendas, research issues of importance and sensitivity, and produce briefing materials and information on sexual harassment issues which require the vice president’s or president’s attention.

Serve as the point of contact for coordinating the university’s Title IX efforts and response to all forms of sexual harassment.

Facilitate resolution of problems that cross organizational boundaries; encourage cooperative planning and action, as necessary.

Identify, evaluate, and address systemic sexual harassment issues on campus.  Gather appropriate information and data and develop responsive policy and action recommendations.

Coordinate and monitor special initiatives as determined by the vice president and/or president and ensure timely and successful completion.

Coordination, Communication & Assessment

Responsible for leading the university’s overall strategic planning efforts to reduce, prevent and respond to sexual harassment.

Interact with administrators, faculty, administrative and classified staff to facilitate effective communication between and among administrative, academic and other campus constituencies.

Provide information to staff, faculty, students and members of the community regarding sexual harassment issues as they pertain to applicable rules, laws, policies and procedures.

Ensure alignment and effectiveness of outward and inward facing materials that communicate the university’s sexual assault prevention resources, and response and compliance efforts.

In consultation with other university offices, provide leadership in the development and implementation of ongoing campus-wide climate surveys and other assessment tools to measure the university community’s overall understanding of sexual harassment and gender-based issues and trends.

Lead assessment and reporting efforts regarding campus sexual harassment in order to ensure the campus is aware of prevalence, effectiveness of interventions and programs and trends regarding sexual harassment.

Response to Reported Concerns

Work across multiple portfolios to ensure that the university’s response to all forms of sexual harassment is effective, fair, timely and thorough, and follows all legal and ethical mandates.

Assist in responding to inquiries and complaints from students, parents and other constituencies; determine appropriate course of action; may gather background information for others to make decisions.

Supervise Title IX investigations by working closely with the Deputy Title IX officers and others to ensure effectiveness, responsiveness and compliance with all state and federal regulations regarding sexual harassment/sexual misconduct/gender violence.

Provide case management of complex, high risk issues, and serve as the point of contact when such events occur.

Other Duties

Supervise the Title IX-related work of the Deputy Title IX Coordinator for Complaint Investigation and the Deputy Title IX Coordinator for Athletics, plus one administrative support position

Responsible for annual reporting of efforts to reduce sexual harassment

Other duties as assigned

The finalist for this position is required to complete a criminal background check.

Required Qualifications

Master’s, JD, or other advanced degree.

Previous experience as a Title IX or deputy Title IX officer or significant experience working directly on Title IX-related issues for a university, or as a civil rights attorney who has worked on matters concerning Title IX and/or issues of sexual harassment.  Demonstrated knowledge of and ability to interpret federal and state non-discrimination laws and regulations, including Title IX, sexual harassment and other applicable laws and regulations is required as is experience in complaint resolution, investigations and grievances.

Knowledge of sexual harassment/sexual violence grievance procedures in a higher education setting.

Minimum of 5 years of executive, administrative, legal, or management experience.

Ability to work with time-sensitive matters and meet strict deadlines.

Exceptional interpersonal skills and the ability to work collaboratively and interact effectively with an organization’s leadership, faculty, staff, students and community/government agencies.

Outstanding written and verbal communication skills and the ability to present to small and large groups.

Strong analytical and critical thinking skills and ability to analyze, summarize, and effectively present data.

Demonstrated leadership, organizational, and management skills and the ability to prioritize multiple projects.

Ability to manage multiple, on-going and issues, complaints and incidents.

Demonstrated experience with and/or commitment to working effectively with individuals from diverse backgrounds, in support of an inclusive and welcoming environment.

Preferred Experience & Education:

A JD degree is strongly preferred.

Experience in a higher education or regulatory compliance setting.

Experience facilitating and evaluating professional development opportunities focused on sexual misconduct/sexual violence.

Experience investigating and resolving complaints alleging sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, sexual assault or sexual violence.

Knowledge of assessment practices involving evaluation of outcomes-based measures and campus climate surveys.

President Schill’s 7/20/2015 letter:


The university remains focused on the safety of our students and is committed to ending sexual violence on campus. The search for an individual to lead the university’s efforts in this critical area has been an important topic on campus for some time and we have benefited both from the suggestions and robust discussion that ensued.

Today we are relaunching the search with a fortified job description designed to increase autonomy and strengthen the chosen candidate’s ability to coordinate efforts. The position has been elevated and will be titled Associate Vice President and Title IX Coordinator, with an important increase in desired qualifications and compensation.

This individual will be responsible for coordinating effective campus-wide efforts in compliance with Title IX and overseeing a comprehensive campus-wide strategic plan to reduce sexual violence in all forms. The updated position description is available here. We fully believe that the enhancements that have been made will attract a pool of candidates that will help us achieve our common goals in dealing with this critical issue.

The ideal candidate will need strong experience in working across portfolios to bring together the campus community to focus on shifting the culture, while being a model for responsiveness to the needs of survivors. To assist us in finding the best possible individual for this role, we will engage a search firm with expertise in recruiting in this highly competitive field.

With joint accountability to the president and the vice president of student life, the new position marks the beginning of a new approach to an issue that has challenged college campuses across the country. It is a critical hire as we develop a comprehensive approach based in best practices and thorough assessment of our programs and services.

There is nothing more important than the safety of the students we serve. We have excellent programs that are making a significant difference right now, but we must do more. That starts with leadership and providing the additional resources to end sexual violence on our campus.

Together, we can make significant progress on this issue. We owe it to our students and their families.

Sincerely, Michael H. Schill, President

Robin H. Holmes, Vice President for Student Life

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