Live-blog Full Board meeting, Tu 12/10/2019: $0.1M for Schill, $1M for Cristobal

Disclaimer: My summary of what people said or should have said. Nothing is a quote unless in quotes. The Monday committee meetings are here.

The wrap up (Note: I skipped out before the votes on some of these, but I assume the board rubber-stamped whatever Lillis and Wilhelms put in front of them, as usual):

  1. The board voted 12-0 to spend $100K of other people’s money on a bonus for President Schill – and gave him a retention package with a fat retirement deal – teach two courses a year for $450K. Schill promised to donate $75K back to UO for scholarships.
  2. The board re-elected Charles M. Lillis as Chair to a 3rd term, since no one else will take on the job of being Phil Knight’s amanuensis. Avoided mention of his ERISA lawsuit settlements and the ~$175M he and the other WaMu board members had to pay out after they led it to the largest financial bankruptcy in US history. Video here. “This time they even blamed teachers.”
  3. The board avoided any substantive discussion of what work they might do to carry through with the promises Lillis, Knight, and the other backers of SB270 and UO independence made about stabilizing UO’s funding. As Henry Ford said, “Thinking is the hardest work there is, which is probably the reason why so few engage in it.”
  4. VP’s Jamie Moffitt and Kevin Marbury set the stage for ensuring that ASUO is on board with the next round of tuition increases, and that they will result in only minor student demonstrations and minimal public embarrassment to the Trustees. They also discussed a proposal to offer a guaranteed tuition rate for new students over their 4 years.
  5. The board voted to issue $120M in debt to finish constructing the Athlete Village for Phil Knight’s Oregon21 T&F championships. Bonds to be repaid with higher room and board charges for UO students.

KEZI has a report on Pres Schill’s bonus, here: https://www.kezi.com/content/news/University-of-Oregon-President-to-potentiall-recieve-100K-bonus-566004431.html:

Chair Chuck Lillis and Vice Chair Ginevra Ralph are recommending the approval of the bonus based on Schill’s performance.

“He’s already making $700,000, why does he need that $100,000 bonus?” said student Daisy Caballero.

Schill is actually making $720,000 a year, and the bonus would come just weeks after graduate employees were fighting for basic benefits and a livable wage.  …

The Daily Emerald reports the Board then voted 12-0 for the $100K bonus, of which Schill has generously promised to donate $75K for scholarships.  This will leave him with about $13K after tax, which may not be worth the bad will.

That said our board has done more wasteful things, like voting a few years ago for a contract for the Duck’s Mark Cristobal which so far this year has given him $1M in bonuses to top off his ~$3M pay:

And speaking of philanthropy, while the Duck athletic department’s donations to the Oregon Community Fund Drive are up 50% over last year, that’s off of a $50 base – total, for a department with many, many people making more than $250K.

2018:

2019:

Full Board of Trustees, Tuesday December 10, 2019 | 9:30 a.m. Live here: https://media.uoregon.edu/channel/

– Public comment (Sorry, I spilled my coffee and missed some of the public comments.)

Former Trustee Kurt Willcox speaks against $100K bonus for Pres Schill noting he is already the 38th highest paid public president. Presided over large tuition increases, a deficit, cuts to LERC and museums, and labor unrest with the GTFF etc.

Grad Student Johnny Saunders walks the board through the history of the $120M residence hall bond deal they are about to approve, referring to previous board minutes and reports commissioned by the board to show that this proposal is motivated by the desire to build an athlete village for the 2021 IAAF meet, not by need for new undergraduate housing. Thanks to Jonny for providing his notes and links:

– Finance and facilities committee meeting, December 2nd, 2015:
https://trustees.uoregon.edu/sites/trustees2.uoregon.edu/files/agenda_and_materials_-_ffc_-_120215_-_updated.pdf
page 32
“The findings from the feasibility and market demand study final report clearly state that the university of oregon should […] renovate rather than replace bean, hamilton, or walton. the findings show that the cost of replacement would create prohibitively expensive room and board rates relative to renovation.”

– Still described as ‘hamilton renovation” at meetings on
– December 1st 2016
– December 7th, 2017

– finance and facilities committee june 7th 2018
meeting slides: https://trustees.uoregon.edu/sites/trustees2.uoregon.edu/files/ffc_6.7.18_meeting_packet.pdf video: https://lib-media.uoregon.edu/media/UOBOT/2018/20180607BOT-FAFC.mp4

-Introduced with no further reports,
– vague nonempirical statements about need for plan
-only tangential reference to feasibility reporty

– two reasons for project presented
housing demand
recruitment

with reference to the 2011 residence hall feasibility and market demand study:
https://cpfm.uoregon.edu/sites/cpfm2.uoregon.edu/files/uo_rhfmdstudy_101211_0.pdf

housing demand:
– feasibility and market demand study estimated 23,198 undergrads in 2021
– for that we would need 5100 total beds
– but currently there are 18,903 undergrads
– should be low/no pressure for housing

recruitment:
– in FFC presentation: ‘we know what housing students want’
– but the feasibility study: “Moreover, the students in the focus groups in the Residence Hall Feasibility and Market Demand Study did not express alarm or disdain over their existing housing. They said the housing is what they expected to live in as freshmen. That the housing was not brand new was of secondary importance.”
– 5/8 of their focus group said cost was the primary reason they chose UO

What changed in the spring of 2018?
– price tag
– end-date of first phase: a new building in summer 2021 instead of a renovated Hamilton in 2022

This board is derelict in its duty to pass this bond.
– Board has not asked why it suddenly costs $500k per new bed
– housing demand is far lower than expected
– cost of attending consistently increases, pricing students out of an education
– student’s in both the board’s focus group and ASUO explicitly say they don’t want this project:
– ASUO statement on tuition increases says too much money spent on giving lavish experience: https://www.oregon.gov/highered/about/Documents/Commission/COMMISSION/2019/13%20June%202019/8.4%20AI%20Final%20Recommendation%20Report%20UO%20tuition%20approval%20request%20updated%206-11-19.pdf
– no additional reports have been given
– no firm details on how much housing fees will increase
– And still pass along an unadvertised potentially double digit percent increase in cost to a generation of UO students

Two members of the OA Council (sorry I missed names) speak to the board about their 2018 climate survey and the issues it raises regarding salary and respect for their work. The OA’s are UO’s core managers, the OA website is here.

Community member David Igl reiterates his well known views on the Dunn denaming and the KKK. Say what you will about Mr. Igl, he is not afraid to speak unpopular and factually questionable views to a hostile audience.

Community member and student Joe Tindhal states that UO is infected by “social justice snowflakes” and “students leave dumber than when they arrive”. He also notes a decline in Star Wars merchandise sales. Given that our board is mostly composed of rich old business people, this seems more directed at the students than the board, and they exercise their First Amendment right to make their disagreement known while respecting his right to speak.

Lillis calls a 5 minute recess.

1. ASUO and University Senate Reports

-ASUO President Sabinna Pierre

Not present.

-University Senate President Elizabeth Skowron

Despite Chuck Lillis’s best hopes the UO Senate survived Harbaugh’s presidency, and with Skowron in charge he will have to find a new excuse for subverting shared governance. She delivers a crisp, fact-based report:

She also arranged meetings with select faculty and the board over lunch. Lillis is eating this stuff up.

2. President’s Report & an Overview of the Last Five Years: President Michael, Schill

Presumably this will be part retrospective, and part supporting material for his next job application.

5 years and he’s late turning it in? Still nothing posted. OK, just got the link, here. How can the board be expected to do its due diligence on his $100K bonus and lucrative retirement deal when they don’t get his brag sheet til the day of the meeting?

Remarks:

Pres Schill notes that it’s 5 years since the UO Board took power. Lots of chaos. Lots of work and money was spent recreating the functions previously done by the OUS board. Schill notes that when he arrived Coltrane could not tell him how many faculty we have. [As union treasurer, I can report that IR still cannot figure that out on a timely basis.]

Gives a shout out to the faculty – careful to include the NTTF/Careers. I wonder if this means he’ll agree to raising their salary floor from $38K for 8 classes a year?

Rebuilt his relationship with the university senate [Is this the part where he gives me some credit? Nope. Good, this would blow my street-cred.]

Replaced UO’s semi-transparent and easily gamed RCM model with BradShelton’s opaque budget model, which centralizes faculty hiring with a committee run by Brad. This will allow UO to move faculty lines from the declining humanities to the sciences. Says this will promote excellence – as measured by Brad Shelton’s metrics, of course.

Funding:

State funding up substantially – thanks to the state, not UO. Endowment up 37% over 5 years. This seems low – the S&P is up more than 50%. Raised $374M for scholarships – I assume that’s mostly promises. 33% of fund drive money is for athletics. I think that excludes Hayward, etc.

Academics:

Enrollment, not so good. And no, this slide is not in his report:

Worked with the Senate to redo student evaluations, worked with faculty on new academic programs for undergrads, etc.

Student Access:

Scholarships to Oregonians up by 37%. [But then tuition is up, which offsets much if not all of this.]

Student success:

Gives CAS – but not Andrew Marcus – credit for Tykeson, which so far is a money pit for everyone but Ikea.

Diversity: Lots of window-dressing. Still having problems retaining minority faculty. Need a new VPEI pretty soon, maybe that will help?

Student Experience:

There’s no doubt that the physical environment has improved dramatically since I came here in 1995. E.g. new EMU, paid for by student tax. Not so good for faculty, though I did get window AC for my PLC office, which helps when my students start sweating over calculus questions.

Sexual Violence: We’ve improved services, and GC Kevin Reed has done a great job hiding the sorts of incidents that got President Gottfredson fired. So far.

Athletics: “We’re” going to Rose Bowl, We’ll have a big junket for the Deans and JH senior admins and their spouses so they can recruit students. Sure, that’ll work great.

If you want to see who else took this previous junket, there’s video here and photos here.

For a more sober analysis of the effects of football on enrollment, here’s one of many recent papers:

Colleges and universities face pressure to maintain enrollments in a time of demographic shifts in the college-going population and reductions in state funding. One indicator of successfully maintaining enrollments is the percentage of accepted students who matriculate—the enrollment yield. Factors known to contribute to yield include school size, cost, research, and reputation. Of interest in the present study is the import of academic reputation as measured by U. S. News and World Report rankings and social reputation as measured by designation as a ‘party school’ relative to accomplishments of the school’s high-profile athletic teams. I use a 21 year panel to model yield for all institutions competing at the highest level of intercollegiate athletics. The results show that yield rates consistently respond to USNWR rankings, but being named a party school has a more sporadic influence. Athletic success has little effect on a school’s enrollment yield. The findings suggest that the signals sent by academic rankings are stronger and better received than the signals sent by social or sports accomplishments.

Challenges: Pres Schill comes close to saying out loud that Board has not delivered on the financial stability that was promised. Points out that philanthropy is tricky.

It is. When Phil Knight gave the money for Hayward, Schill could have made sure that he paid to replace the parking and the $2.3M for utility hookups. He didn’t, so now the UO staff and students are stuck with the bills. Very tricky.

Questions from the Board?

Nope. No preparation, no questions, no due diligence.

3. Tuition-Setting Process and Guaranteed Tuition Discussion: Jamie Moffitt, Vice President for Finance and Administration; Kevin Marbury, Vice President for Student Life; Roger Thompson, Vice President for Student Services and Enrollment Management

This is the second time around for the tuition guarantee proposal, which is going nowhere for reasons that should be obvious to anyone who read the version three years ago. I assume it’s on the agenda so the trustees can have something that sounds consequential to ask questions about. It’s not, so I’ll skip it – although Thompson is *very* enthusiastic for its potential to help with recruiting. Of course as he suggests – honesty is one of his many charms – it will also eliminate student protests at board meetings over tuition increases, which might be enough to encourage our trustees to kick in the millions that will be needed to implement it.

Bragdon asks why, if this is such a great idea, more schools aren’t doing it. Moffitt explains they are, the presentation just had a short list.

Ralph notes that the last time they heard this presentation Thompson was a lot less positive about it. Why the new enthusiasm? He’s worried the UC system will do it first.

Ford notes that a reserve will be crucial in case of an enrollment decline, or drop in state funding. Asks if the HECC is qualified to evaluate this sort of program. [They certainly are. I’m on the HECC’s SSCM working group, and I’ve found the HECC staff to be quite good. on par with Thompson’s people. Certainly more knowledgeable about higher ed issues than, say, Brad Shelton. ]

Board catches Thompson’s infectious enthusiasm, tells TFAB to start looking at guaranteed tuition.

The real action here is on the TFAB and the coming tuition increases. VP Marbury presents on the state-mandated tuition setting process. For some examples of the propaganda – and lies – that Moffitt and Marbury dish up to our students during this process, check their website here:

OK, so we can’t blame the coaches, so it must be the faculty’s fault. Interestingly, Moffitt and Marbury – or whoever is strategically communicating for them –  are a little confused about whether to blame the faculty union’s labor cartel or free market forces:

They could also blame double-dippers like VP Brad Shelton, who’s now collecting PERS and a fat UO salary. Last year, with SB1049, the legislature decided to make state agencies pay PERS contributions on these salaries, which had been exempt.

Interestingly, the overall impact of PERS this year is a *reduction* in costs, because of reductions in bond costs and because as UO’s Tier 1 employees retire UO no longer has to pay into PERS for them. (Except now while they keep working, as with Shelton or TRP faculty).

Back of the envelope and ignoring the elasticity of demand, a 1% increase in tuition brings in about $750K from in-state students, and about $2.5M from out of state.

So balancing the budget could be done as follows, while keeping the tuition increase to 2%;

    1. $5M saved by eliminating hidden athletic subsidies
    2. $5M saved by dropping baseball, men’s golf and tennis.
    3. $3M saved by reducing the subsidy for law school tuition
    4. $2M saved by reducing consulting costs and getting rid of a few lawyers and strategic communicators.
    5. $6.5M in new revenue from a 2% tuition increase.

That’s more than enough to make the $19M nut.

Needless to say this is not the proposal Moffitt and Marbury will guide the students toward in the next few months of TFAB meetings. Instead UO will push for 4.9% tuition increases, just below the level that triggers HECC review, and they will continue to claim that the athletics budget is untouchable, and that the faculty, state, PERS, and China are to blame for the increases.

Meeting Recessed for Lunch with Students

I’m not sure I’ll live blog the rest of this, video is at https://media.uoregon.edu/channel/ (I didn’t. Enough is enough. See top for summary.)

4. Resolutions and Seconded Motions from Committee (Actions)

4.1 Seconded Motion from FFC – Bond Issuance Authorization: Ross Kari, FFC Chair

4.2 Seconded Motion from EAC – Board Officers: Peter Bragdon, Trustee

4.3 Resolution Re Presidential Bonus and Contract Amendment: Chuck Lillis, Chair

5. Academic Area in Focus – Media Center for Science and Technology: Ellen Peters, Philip H. Knight Chair and Director of the SOJC’s Media Center for Science and Technology

Sorry, but this is just too glossy and self-promoting to take seriously.

Adjourn

Live-Blogging: UO Board of Trustees to meet Dec 9 committee meetings

Disclaimer: My summary of what people said or should have said. Nothing is a quote unless in quotes. This is a bit disorganized but I made it through the entire set of Monday committee meetings, and will be here for the full board meeting at 9:30 AM Tuesday.

The gist of the agenda, with details, links, and live-blogging below.

  1. Re-elect Charles M. Lillis as Chair to a 3rd term, since no one else will take on the job of being Phil Knight’s amanuensis. Avoid mention of his ERISA lawsuit settlements and the ~$175M he and the other WaMu board members had to pay out after they led it to the largest financial bankruptcy in US history. Video here.
  2. Offer President Schill a retention package with a $100K bonus and a fat retirement deal – teach two courses a year for $450K – in the vain hope he won’t use it as proof of how highly his current board values him while shopping around for his next job.
  3. Avoid any substantive discussion of what work our trustees might do to carry through with the promises Lillis, Knight, and the other backers of SB270 and UO independence made about stabilizing UO’s funding. They don’t like to work or think, that’s why they’re using tuition money to pay people like Angela Wilhelms to do it for them.
  4. Thank VPFA Jamie Moffitt for her hard work ensuring that ASUO is on board with the next round of tuition increases, and that they will result in only minor student demonstrations and minimal public embarrassment to the Trustees.
  5. Issue $120M in debt to finish constructing the Athlete Village for Phil Knight’s Oregon21 T&F championships. Bonds to be repaid with higher room and board charges for UO students.

The board’s meetings are open to the public – even faculty and students if they tug the forelock. All sessions are in the Ford Alumni Center Ballroom and are webcast here. Note that the committees meet on Monday, but I’ve put the Full Board agenda for its Tuesday meeting at the top:

Finance and Facilities Committee, December 9, 2019 | 1:15 p.m.

Continue reading

Board uses public listserv to notify public of meeting on new President

That would be the transparent OSU board, which has taken to this simple 1990’s technology with enthusiasm. In contrast UO’s Board Secretary Angela Wilhelms still can not, or will not, email out meeting notices or agendas or post them in usable form. (The UO Matters transparent version of our board’s agenda, with clickable links, clips, and helpful commentary is here.)

From: “Skousen, Lauren” <lauren.skousen@oregonstate.edu>
Subject: [Board-updates] Public Notice: OSU Board of Trustees to meet Dec 13
Date: December 5, 2019 at 11:47:18 AM PST
To: “Skousen, Lauren” <lauren.skousen@oregonstate.edu>

Public Meetings Notice
December 5, 2019

Oregon State University’s Board of Trustees will hold a special board meeting to consider the appointment and employment agreement of Oregon State University’s next president for a term starting on July 1, 2020.

The meeting begins at 10 a.m. on Friday, Dec. 13, in the Memorial Union Horizon Room on the OSU Corvallis campus.

The candidate under consideration for appointment will be introduced publicly at the Dec. 13 board meeting. If appointed, the candidate will succeed President Ed Ray, who announced in March that on June 30, 2020, he will step down as president after 17 years of service and join OSU’s teaching faculty.

Following the board meeting, trustees will host a reception in the main lounge of the Memorial Union from 10:45 a.m. to noon to welcome the president-elect. The reception is open to the public.

Action by the board in the meeting will conclude a national presidential search launched last spring with the formation of a 15-member search committee and the holding of community listening sessions to develop a presidential leadership profile to guide the recruitment process. The recruitment included an extensive interview process of candidates that involved the search committee, a broad group of stakeholders and trustees.

“Oregon State’s next president is positioned to lead a distinctive university that enjoys tremendous momentum and provides transformative impact in Oregon, nationally and globally,” said Rani Borkar, chair of OSU’s Board of Trustees. “OSU’s next president will continue to foster a university community that prioritizes diversity and inclusive excellence.”

The meeting is open to the public. The meeting agenda and details are available athttp://oregonstate.edu/leadership/trustees/meetings. The meeting will be live-streamed at https://live.oregonstate.edu/. If special accommodation is required, please contact (541) 737-3449 or lauren.skousen@oregonstate.edu at least 48 hours in advance.

Lauren Skousen | Executive Assistant, Board of Trustees
_______________________________________________
Board-updates mailing list
Board-updates@lists.oregonstate.edu
https://lists.oregonstate.edu/mailman/listinfo/board-updates

To unsubscribe, send a message to:
Board-updates-request@lists.oregonstate.edu
with the word “unsubscribe” in the body.

Meanwhile, at UO:

From: William Harbaugh <harbaugh@uoregon.edu>
Sent: Friday, November 8, 2019 2:53 PM
To: Angela Wilhelms <wilhelms@uoregon.edu>
Subject: Fwd: [Board-updates] Public Notice: OSU Board of Trustees to meet Nov. 12 – 13

Hi Angela, is there a way I and others can sign up for similar notifications about upcoming UO BoT meetings?

Bill Harbaugh
UO Economics
harbaugh@uoregon.edu

From: Angela Wilhelms <wilhelms@uoregon.edu>
Subject: RE: [Board-updates] Public Notice: OSU Board of Trustees to meet Nov. 12 – 13
Date: November 8, 2019 at 3:38:32 PM PST
To: William Harbaugh <harbaugh@uoregon.edu>

Hi Bill,
Thanks for inquiring. A list-serve is one of the items on my to do list for this academic year. We do not currently have one.
Angela

AAUP-OR Pres Dreiling calls out UO Pres Schill over Prof Freyd case, Gov Brown over Trustees

Back of the envelope I’m guessing Pres Schill has let his GC Kevin Read pay Barran and Liebman $300K in tuition money fighting this gender discrimination lawsuit against himself and other UO administrators, with plenty more billable hours to come at $300 per. [Kevin, if I’ve got that wrong please send me Paula’s invoices and the insurance contracts.] A snippet from Prof Dreiling’s email, at full here:

Fourth, I want to call out the University of Oregon for persisting with a problematic approach to faculty relations and institutional governance. The ongoing efforts by the UO to deny a pay equity claim by Professor Jennifer Freyd have now hit the basement floor. The attorneys hired by the UO – advancing arguments no doubt supported by the General Counsel and President of the UO – have made problematic dismissals of research methods used by Professor Freyd while making spurious and exaggerated claims about the value of research methods by other faculty in the department of psychology. Different research methods used by faculty in the same field are not a basis for entrenching pay inequities. The arguments being made by the UO have negative implications for how all professional organizations will approach pay equity claims. As a result, the national AAUP has drafted an amicus brief on behalf of Professor Freyd’s case. You can read more here

And:

Also at the University of Oregon, we witnessed another case where a Trustee was appointed without courtesy public announcements or process. We expect better engagement with the civic and institutional stakeholders to whom the UO and its future matter a great deal. This contrasts sharply with the positive example of shared governance witnessed at PSU in a recent trustee appointment. Trust that we will be working with allies to encourage the Governor to facilitate greater transparency and accountability in the appointment of university trustees.

Uh, 12-1 Nov 22 is *an* office hour, not “office hours”

One of the criticisms of the appointment and then reappointment of Ed school Prof Laura Lee McIntyre as the faculty trustee was that she didn’t know much about CAS – and the Board had specifically said the trustee replacing Law Prof Susan Gary should be from CAS. Around the O reports on McIntyre’s efforts to learn something about the rest of the university:

Board of trustees office hours scheduled for fall term 2019

Faculty trustee Laura Lee McIntyre will hold office hours for faculty colleagues Friday, Nov. 22, from noon to 1 p.m. in the Erb Memorial Union’s Owyhee Room. McIntyre is a professor and head of the Department of Special Education and Clinical Sciences.

Who will pick UO’s next President?

Phil Knight, acting through BoT Secretary Angela Wilhelms and Chuck Lillis, or whoever replaces him as BoT Chair. InsideHigherEd had the story on what happened last time, here:

… In an interview, Lillis disputed a newspaper account from the meeting that said he created a process that “reserves broad powers for himself — and a select group of others” by allowing him to conduct the search with an “assist” from the committee members. The Register-Guard said Lillis’s plan gave him sole authority to rank and even eliminate finalists. In an interview Friday evening, he said he’s not on the search committee, would be involved only as a member of the board and would not be “directly involved” until there are some finalists. (Editor’s note: This story has been updated to reflect further information on the chairman’s broad powers in the following three paragraphs.)

But, the plan voted on by the board clearly gives Lillis more power than he let on.  The search plan approved by the board – which Lillis drew up – gives the chairman power to interview all the search committee’s finalists and a host of other powers.

“The chair is authorized to narrow the field of candidates after consultation with the committee, and is also authorized to rank the candidates,” the plan says.

Inside Higher Ed last week requested all documents that outlined the search plan but was not provided with the actual plan, which has was brought to the site’s attention on Monday by UO Matters, a blog that carefully follows the university. The plan clearly contradicts the chairman’s characterization of his powers in the Friday interview. A spokeswoman for the university, Julie Brown, said Monday the omission was “not intentional.” …

GCO redacts Dearinger & Wilhelms docs on Trustee Elisa Hornecker

They want me to pay $180 for the rest of the docs, but were kind enough to offer this free teaser.

It appears UO’s lobbyists Hans Bernard and Libby Batlan are helping Chuck Lillis and Angela Wilhems stack the UO Board with compliant trustees. They’ve replaced former NBC journalist Ann Curry – known for asking a few tough questions at meetings – with a new trustee from Portland, who’s most notable recent accomplishment is writing puff pieces for the local neighborhood newsletter, Portland Heights Living.

 

There’s a little more on Governor Brown’s public records website here.

Who is Elisa Hornecker & who is she replacing on the Board?

I have no idea. The BOT’s webpage says nothing about a vacancy. The August 26 generic press release from Governor Brown is here. The list of appointments is here, and includes this:

The Senate Rules committee is supposed to vote on these next week, but their webpage has nothing yet. Thanks to an anonymous correspondent for catching this. The most recent previous appointee to UO’s problematic Board of Trustees was Marcia Aaron, appointed by Gov Brown after she and Pres Schill sat together at a basketball game:

If you see something say something.

Board of Trustees to perform due diligence theatre, Portland Th & Fr

UO Board Secretary Angela Wilhelms has buried the agendas in pdf’s, to make it hard to see what our board is up to. I’ve reformatted them as html below.  Among the items that our board will not be discussing in public:

  1. UO’s current budget crisis and administrative bloat
  2. UO’s future budget crisis and demographic cliff
  3. Upcoming search to replace Pres Mike Schill
  4. Legislative distrust of UO and resulting lack of state funding
  5. IAAF 2021 subsidies
  6. Upcoming Duck athletic scandals
  7. Ducks by 6 points, watch party Saturday in Schill’s $350K Autzen skybox
  8. Cost of football concussion insurance

All meetings in the UO-Portland Naito Building, Room 136, first floor to the left.

Academic and Student Affairs Committee — September 5, 2019. 10:00 a.m.

Provost’s Quarterly Report

1. Student Success Initiatives Semi-Annual Report: Kevin Marbury, Vice President for Student Life; Sarah Nutter, Dean of the Lundquist College of Business; Julia Pomerenk, Assistant Vice President and Registrar; and Doneka Scott, Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education and Student Success.

2. Accreditation Update – Learning Outcomes: Ron Bramhall, Associate Vice Provost for Academic Excellence; Chuck Triplett, Associate Vice President for Academic Infrastructure

3. University Leadership and Faculty Development Initiatives: Sierra Dawson, Associate Vice Provost for Academic Affairs

Anticipated Recess for Lunch

4. Research Enterprise Annual Report: David Conover, Vice President for Research and Innovation

5. Academic Area in Focus – Urbanism Next: Nico Larco, professor of Architecture, and Becky Steckler, program manager

[Materials]

Executive and Audit Committee — September 5, 2019. 3:00 p.m.

1. FY19 Year End Audit Report and Quarterly Report: Amy Smith, Interim Chief Auditor

2. Chief Auditor Search Plan and Update: Greg Stripp, Chief of Staff and Senior Advisor to the President

[Materials]

Finance and Facilities Committee — September 6, 2019. 8:30 a.m.

1. Quarterly Financial Reports: Jamie Moffitt, Vice President for Finance and Administration and CFO

2. FY20 Budget and Expenditure Authority Authorization (Action): Jamie Moffitt, Vice President for Finance and Administration and CFO

3. Naming of the Black Cultural Center (Action): Kevin Marbury, Vice President for Student Life

4. Housing Transformation Capital Project – Authorization for Project Expenditures (Action): Roger Thompson, Vice President for Student Services and Enrollment Management; Michael Griffel, Assistant Vice President and Director of University Housing

5. Oregon Acoustics Research Laboratory Capital Project – Authorization for Project Expenditures (Action): Kevin Van Den Wymelenberg, Professor of Architecture

6. Annual Retirement Plan Report: Jamie Moffitt, Vice President for Finance and Administration and CFO

[Materials]

Meeting of the Board — September 6, 2019 10:30 AM

– Public comment

1. ASUO and University Senate Reports
-ASUO President Sabinna Pierre
-University Senate President Elizabeth Skowron

2. President’s Report

3. Resolutions from Committee (pending September 6 committee action)
-Seconded Motion from FFC: Black Cultural Center Naming
-Seconded Motion from FFC: University Housing Project
-Seconded Motion from FFC: Oregon Acoustics Research Laboratory
-Seconded Motion from FFC: FY20 Expenditure Authorizations

4. Knight Campus Semi-Annual Report: Bob Guldberg, Vice President and Executive Director of the Knight Campus

5. Executive Session Regarding Collective Bargaining: Missy Matella, Senior Director of Employee and Labor Relations; Peter Fehrs, Associate Director of Employee and Labor Relations. The Board of Trustees will meet in executive session pursuant to ORS 192.660(2)(d) for purposes of conducting deliberations regarding labor negotiations. This session is closed to members of the public
and the media.

[Materials]

Trustees to meet 110 miles off campus, 4 weeks before students return

You wouldn’t know it from Board Secretary Angela Wilhelms minimalist website, but rumor has it the Sept 5-6 meeting of our Board of Trustees will be in Portland. Classes in Eugene start October 1. Maybe they have something urgent to vote on, like another round of raises for the coaches and administrators, or more tuition increases:

Or maybe they just want to go through their due-diligence charade in peace and quiet, then make it down to President Schill’s skybox in time for the football game on Saturday:

 

Steve Raymund to replace Chuck Lillis as BOT Chairman

That’s the rumor from yesterday’s match down at the Faculty Club’s polo grounds. Lillis’s 2nd 3-year term as chair of UO’s Board of Trustees is up in December. Raymund is an Econ grad, a wealthy self-made businessman, the current chair of Paul Weinhold’s secretive sports-obsessed UO Foundation board, and a generous donor to UO’s academic mission.

Trustee McIntyre to propose tuition freeze & cuts to Duck subsidies

Just kidding, there’s no sign that Faculty Trustee Laura Lee McIntyre will make any such motion, or raise any questions about why the board continues to rubber-stamp raises for Rob Mullens and his coaches while increasing undergraduate tuition and cutting museums.

BOARD OF TRUSTEES, Th 9:30 AM FORD ALUMNI CENTER

Full Board meeting.

Original meeting materials here. Latest release here. For some reason the webcast link isn’t working.

– Call to order, roll call, verification of quorum – Approval of March 2019 summary (Action) [There is no mention of what this summary is in the posted materials.]

Public comment: 

The room is full, the public comments are blunt, calling out the Board for incompetence etc., e.g.:

Immediate Past Senate President / Current Faculty Union President Chris Sinclair:

The board of Trustees at the University of Oregon is in an untenable situation. The people ‘below you’ on the .org chart—represented by the people in this room—are supremely unhappy with the financial management and strategic vision of the university. Simultaneously the people above you, legislators and political appointees, are supremely unhappy with the financial management and strategic vision of the university.

It seems the only people happy with university leadership on budget issues are donors (and trustees themselves).

The mission of the university, approved by this body, is:

The University of Oregon is a comprehensive public research university committed to exceptional teaching, discovery, and service. We work at a human scale to generate big ideas. As a community of scholars, we help individuals question critically, think logically, reason effectively, communicate clearly, act creatively, and live ethically.

And aside from the vapid “human scale to generate big ideas” phrase, it is a good mission. The mission is the touch stone for decision making. It should be the North Star of the board—the words to revisit when making your decisions.

You are about to be asked to approve an extremely high tuition increase. You are being asked to finance the university on the backs of Oregon students. By doing this you are implicitly agreeing that it is more important to preserve athletics and other donor driven initiatives in exchange for millions in additional debt for Oregon students and families.

The University of Oregon has already telegraphed the message that, instead of plugging the looming budget shortfall. it is more important to install state-of-the-art sound systems in athletics facilities. The new speakers will undoubtedly come from donor money, but this is irrelevant. Legislators have already heard the message that speakers are more important than students. Faculty have heard the message that world-class athletics facilities are more important than students. Students themselves have heard that we’re broke, and that they should take on debt (and years of financial risk) to accommodate the fickle whims of an octogenarian billionaire.

How do these decisions, and the resulting negative change in public perception, benefit students? How do they benefit the relationship between the university and the state? How do they support the mission—the North Star—of the university?

This is but one example, and it is emblematic of a larger problem.

Cultivating donors is like trophy hunting for University Presidents. However, as a skill, it is only valued by other university presidents and those who measure their success in dollar signs. Our president is particularly good at this aspect of his job, and it will undoubtedly lead to a promotion to a better university one day.

On that day, will we be looking at a university with a handful of expensive white elephants littering campus, and serving a handful of elite researchers/coaches, while the core academic facilities rot from neglect, classrooms overflow, and Oregon students are saddled with debt?

Or will we see a “community of scholars, who help individuals question critically, think logically, reason effectively, communicate clearly, act creatively, and live ethically.”?

The choice is yours, and it’s time for you as trustee to shift the financial decision making back to the mission of the university. You must be brave. You must do this. The University of Oregon is counting on you.

Thank you.

Chris Sinclair
Associate Professor of Mathematics, University of Oregon

A student: “You ask us to go to Salem and lobby for more state money, but the legislators tell us they don’t trust you to spend the money wisely”

Prof Ellen Scott (Sociology) walks the board through some of the work that LERC and UO faculty and grad students have done and how it has led to changes in Oregon laws that have improved the lives of working Oregonians.

Prof Maram Epstein (East Asian Languages) asks the board to exercise their independent fiduciary responsibility to redo the proposed budget in a way that is consistent with UO’s mission as a public university.

Many, many students make comments as well.

Former staff Trustee Kurt Willcox: The university is turning away from its outreach mission to the state by defunding LERC and the museums.

1. ASUO and University Senate Reports

-ASUO President Maria Gallegos and Incoming ASUO Vice President Montse Mendez and Chief of Staff Hibo Abtidon

“Hayward Field does nothing for me. I’m a student.”

– Incoming Senate President Elizabeth Skowron

written comments in board materials

2. Provost’s and President’s Reports

these seem to be postponed

3. Undergraduate Resident Tuition (Action): Michael Schill, President; Jamie Moffitt, Vice President for Finance and Administration and CFO; Kevin Marbury, Vice President for Student Life

VP Marbury is upset because the ASUO President criticized him.

President Schill blames outgoing Provost Banavar for the budget cuts to LERC and the museums. This is chickenshit bizarre.

12:47, and none of the trustees have yet mentioned any of the issues that came up in the public comments, such as cuts to athletic subsidies.

Ginevra Ralph asks why students don’t understand about gift restrictions. VP Moffitt explains that they do, they just think the university should shift its fundraising priorities. (Or just tax athletic donations. The UO Foundation already taxes donations, but won’t explain where the money goes.)

Wilhelms reports that Pathways costs about $6M.

Lillis calls the question on President Schill’s tuition increase.

Ralph and Paustian talk about how difficult this is and what a great job VP’s Moffitt and Marbury have done. Paustian says he will vote no – but doesn’t present an alternative motion. Colas gives a shout out to the students and GTFFs – but doesn’t present an alternative motion.

Vote: All in favor except Paustian.

Recess: Estimated to Reconvene at 1:00 p.m.

4. Resolutions from Committee (pending May 22 committee action)
–Seconded Motion from FFC: Capital Construction Project (Housing Project Preliminary Costs) –Seconded Motion from FFC: FY20 Expenditure Temporary Authorization

5. Student Conduct Code Changes (Action): Kris Winter, Dean of Students

6. A Look at PERS: Tim Nesbitt, Interim Deputy Director of PERS Solutions for Public Services and former Higher Education Coordinating Commission Chair; John Tapogna, President and Partner, ECONorthwest economic research and consulting firm

7. Academic Area in Focus – ShakeAlert, ALERTWidlfire, and the Emerging Internet of (Wild) Things: Professor Doug Toomey, Earth Sciences

Meeting Adjourned

Board of Trustees to meet Wed, Th on tuition, etc

See below for some light live-blogging. So far my takeaway is that most of the trustees haven’t done their homework and are asking softball questions, when they have any questions at all.

Note that Wednesday’s public committee meetings and the executive (closed) meeting of the board are in the Art Museum, starting at 8:30, while Thursday’s full Board meeting is in the Alumni Center, starting at 9:30.

Board Secretary Angela Wilhelms buries the agenda information in pdf files deep within the Board’s website, so as usual I have put it in more accessible form below. I’ll add some clips later and do some live-blogging.

Wed 8:3o AM Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art | Ford Lecture Hall

Finance and Facilities Committee

Meeting materials here. Note that, as usual, the Trustees have only been given the information about budget planning today, presumably so that they won’t have had time to digest it and ask tough questions. The new packet is here.

I assume that Board Chair Chuck Lillis learned this trick when he was on the board of Washington Mutual as it collapsed in one of the largest bankruptcies in history, leaving stockholders with 2 cents on the dollar.

For some reason Lillis has left his WaMu service and the lawsuits about the board’s failure to conduct due diligence off his UO Trustees biosketch:

1. Housing Transformation Capital Project – Authorization for Preliminary Expenditures (Action): Roger Thompson, Vice President for Student Services and Enrollment Management; Michael Griffel, Assistant Vice President and Director of University Housing

Sorry missed most of this. No coffee for the plebes.

2. Critical Business Functions Audit Project – Report and Update: Trisha Burnett, Chief Auditor

The usual.

3. Quarterly Financial Reports: Jamie Moffitt, Vice President for Finance and Administration and CFO

As usual Jamie focuses the discussion narrowly on the E&G budget, and doesn’t talk about what the administration talk about – e.g. the subsidies for athletics and the law school – which were supposed to be phased out by now but which instead continue to grow:

4. Financial Reports and Discussion: Savings Initiatives, Expenditure Reduction Efforts, and LongTerm Financial Projections: Michael Schill, President; Jamie Moffitt, Vice President for Finance and Administration and CFO

Jamie explains that UO is making significant administrative cuts from what is already a low level. Allyn Ford says that if this continues maybe the university should consider substantial program cuts. I assume he means the baseball program.

Ross Kari asks if Jamie can calculate what % tuition increases of this period would be needed.

Chuck Lillis points out that the problem is not costs, it’s revenue. Too little tuition, too little state support, too little donations. These, of course, are the problems that the UO Board was supposed to address, and which it has consistently failed at. Except for increasing tuition – they’re great at that.

Schill points out that, because we are unionized, the administration can’t arbitrarily freeze or cut faculty salaries during a recession, while continuing to subsidize themselves and the coaches. Yea union!

Short break.

5. FY20 Budget and Expenditure Authority Authorization (Action): Jamie Moffitt, Vice President for Finance and Administration and CFO

Approved, sent to full board.

6. Department of Intercollegiate Athletics Overview: Rob Mullens, Athletic Director; Eric Roedl, Deputy Athletic Director

As usual, they Ducks have prepared a flashy presentation. Will the trustees ask them any tough questions? Some obvious ones:

The university is in a budget crisis. Why aren’t you helping out by reducing your costs?

Why hasn’t the millions we spend on the Ducks lead to increased out of state enrollment?

Do you think your bragging and profligate spending on coaches’s salaries and shiny new facilities are part of the reason the Legislature doesn’t want to give UO more money? Because that’s what the legislators say.

Why do you keep pushing the costs of the Duck’s legal problems onto the rest of the university?

Yours is a risky business. Now, it makes no difference to me how a man makes his living, but don’t you think you should have more than a week of expenses in reserves? Or do you just plan on hitting up the academic side for more subsidies when you get another lawsuit?

When do you think the news about the most recent sexual assaults by your players will become public?

What do you think about the fact that the UO Foundation has withdrawn its guarantee for the 2021 IAAF championships?

Trustee Ginevra Ralph doesn’t ask anything above, but she does ask how one-and-done’s reflect on UO’s academic mission. Mullens says everyone else does it.

Meeting Adjourns

12:45 WEDNESDAY: EXECUTIVE SESSION

Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art | Ford Lecture Hall

Meeting materials here.

Executive Session re Labor Negotiations

The Board of Trustees will meet in executive session pursuant to ORS 192.660(2)(d) for purposes of conducting deliberations regarding labor negotiations with the Graduate Teaching Fellows Federation. This session is closed to members of the public and the media. The meeting will be called to order and adjourned. No other topics or matters will occur on May 22. Notwithstanding the location listed above, this May 22 executive session will occur in the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art.

Wed 1:30 PM Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art | Ford Lecture Hall

Public meeting of Executive and Audit Committee

Meeting materials here.

1. Quarterly Audit Report and FY20 Audit Plan (Action): Trisha Burnett, Chief Auditor

Burnett reports that the number of reports to UO’s ethics hotline are unusually low for a university or size. Presumably this is because of the lack of trust that many UO staff and faculty have in her office – which has had a mixed past. The link to the hotline is here. As you can see you can report all sorts of things, anonymously:

Ginevra Ralph asks about the independent audit of the internal auditors. It turns out it’s not really that independent – it’s done by the internal auditors professional association.

Pres Schill asks about the audit of university committees. Burnett reports it’s a bit of a look at internal Governance. Schill asks if the audit will include Senate committees. Good question. Burnett says the intention is to start at the top, which I assume means the President and Provost’s committees.

Committee approves report.

2. Semi-Annual Enterprise Risk Update: Andre LeDuc, Associate Vice President and Chief Resilience Officer

I’d sort of thought this would include some actual information about the cost of UO’s various insurance policies, athletics riders, deductibles, payouts, etc. Nope. It’s all buzzwords and silly diagrams:

3. Semi-Annual Transform IT and Information Services Report: Jessie Minton, Chief Information Officer

Sorry, end of today’s live-blogging. I’ve got to get ready for the Senate meeting. See you tomorrow at 9:30AM and the Alumni Center.

4. New Program Proposal – PhD in Planning and Public Affairs (Action): Rich Margerum, Professor and School Head for Planning, Public Policy and Management

Meeting Adjourns

Th 9:30 AM FORD ALUMNI CENTER

Full Board meeting.

Meeting materials here.

– Call to order, roll call, verification of quorum

– Approval of March 2019 summary (Action)
– Public comment

1. ASUO and University Senate Reports
-ASUO President Maria Gallegos and Incoming ASUO Vice President Montse Mendez and Chief of Staff Hibo Abtidon -Incoming Senate President Elizabeth Skowron

2. Provost’s and President’s Reports

3. Undergraduate Resident Tuition (Action): Michael Schill, President; Jamie Moffitt, Vice President for Finance and Administration and CFO; Kevin Marbury, Vice President for Student Life

Recess: Estimated to Reconvene at 1:00 p.m.

4. Resolutions from Committee (pending May 22 committee action)
–Seconded Motion from FFC: Capital Construction Project (Housing Project Preliminary Costs) –Seconded Motion from FFC: FY20 Expenditure Temporary Authorization

5. Student Conduct Code Changes (Action): Kris Winter, Dean of Students

6. A Look at PERS: Tim Nesbitt, Interim Deputy Director of PERS Solutions for Public Services and former Higher Education Coordinating Commission Chair; John Tapogna, President and Partner, ECONorthwest economic research and consulting firm

7. Academic Area in Focus – ShakeAlert, ALERTWidlfire, and the Emerging Internet of (Wild) Things: Professor Doug Toomey, Earth Sciences

Meeting Adjourned

HECC steps in for failed university boards on capital construction

The latest evidence of the failed promise of Oregon’s independent boards:

HECC Embarks on First-Ever 10-Year Strategic Capital Development Plan for Public Universities

To learn more about the project and university stakeholder meetings, see www.oregon.gov/highered/10-year-capital-plan

Salem, OR – The Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) has embarked upon an in-depth process  to develop the first-ever 10-year comprehensive strategic capital plan for Oregon’s seven public universities. Launched in February of this year, the HECC concludes its first phase of statewide campus meetings this week, and will sponsor a second series of regional focus groups with campus leaders, businesses and community representatives to inform the project this June. The 10-year plan will provide a target public university capital portfolio through 2029 and will be used to guide the Commission in its recommendations to the Governor and the Legislature on the prioritization of state-funded capital projects for years to come.

Ben Cannon, executive director of the HECC, said, “This is a critically important project for the campuses and for the hundreds of thousands of students they serve through their many facilities, classrooms, and research spaces. The plan will guide our Commission’s priortization of capital projects in biennial budget recommendations for the next decade, and will inform state leaders in their challenging decisions to align taxpayer-supported bonding with Oregon’s transformational goals to expand college opportunity and success for all.”

The plan is being developed in partnership with the public universities and with the expertise of SmithGroup, a planning and design firm with extensive national experience in strategic fiscal planning in higher education. After the first series of campus meetings concludes this week, the HECC and its contractor will have finished the first phase of data gathering, conducted in extensive collaboration with the public universities, to ensure the availability of data for analysis. The next set of campus visits will be held June 10 through 28, and will be focus-group style meetings to invite input from business and community representatives to assess the needs of each of the seven public universities and their regions.

Jim Pinkard, HECC director of postsecondary finance and capital, said, “Through recent university visits,  consultations on university strategic planning efforts, and expert input, we are building the knowledge base that will inform this plan. We are optimistic by the learner-focused lens that our partners are already bringing to the table in the planning process and look forward to deepening our understanding through local focus group meetings this June.”

The 10-year strategic capital plan will be a high-level summary of the state’s capital needs for public universities based on demographic, economic, industry, and other environmental factors, dividing the targeted portfolio by region of the state. It will divide the existing and potential future capital portfolio according to ideal usage and utilization, estimating space need for different academic disciplines and functions. Staff anticipates the initial phase of work to be completed by the end of September 2019. The HECC will first use the final deliverable and the data and analysis behind it to guide its prioritization of public university capital requests for the 2020 Legislative Session.