Board Secretary Angela Wilhelms has managed to arrange the room to keep the board and the UO community even farther apart than last time. Portable barriers are ready, in case the crowd gets restless:
The live-blog of Wednesday’s committee meetings is here.
News reports: Scott Greenstone in the Emerald on Kurt Wilcox’s resolution to have the board discuss potential union strikes before everything goes to hell as with the GTFF, here. Diane Dietz in the RG on pay for the next UO president, here. She goes easy on clueless Mercer consultant Stephen Pollack. UCLA gave him an MBA and he can’t run a regression? Shame on them. Meanwhile Tobin Klinger has distortionary post on this on “Around the 0”. Why does UO pay Klinger $115K in student tuition money to do a bad imitation of Diane Dietz?
The Agenda/Docket for the full Thursday/Friday meetings is here.
I’ll live-blog what I can below, but best to show up yourself. Highlights should include Jamie Moffitt explaining why UO had plenty of money 6 months ago, but now that the board has to vote on tuition increases, and the faculty union wants Coltrane to follow through on getting pay to AAU peers, she’s been able to rearrange the estimates to make it look like the well is dry. I’m guessing Susan Gary (Law) won’t ask Jamie Moffitt about the extra $1.5M she just gave Michael Moffitt’s law school:
On Friday, Athletic Director Rob Mullens and AAD Eric Roedl will explain how they just spent all the Duck athletics surplus on their own raises, and still can’t pay anything to support the academic side so too bad, Senate. As for the ungrateful students that just voted to hold the line against Roedl’s attempt to extract another 10% for “free” tickets? The Ducks will cave.
Thursday March 5th, 8:00 am (other times approximate) – Convene Public Meeting – Call to order and roll call/verification of quorum
1. Approval of Minutes from December 2014 Meeting
2. Invited Academic Presentations
2.1 School of Law – Michael Moffitt, Dean
Michael Moffitt has a lot of explaining to do. While times are tough for all law schools, UO has been in a rankings slide, falling from #77 when he started as Dean, to a 3 way tie for 100th place last year. The new USNews rankings come out March 10, and one more slip and the law school will be in the dread 3rd tier. Moffitt seems to have only the dimmest understanding of how the rankings work, as revealed in his letter to the law school alumni and students, here.
His wife, UO VPFA Jamie Moffitt, has been throwing scholarship money at law from the general fund, trying to entice students with decent LSATs to enroll and keep up the rankings. It’s been a losing battle so far, not helped by law professor Rob Illig’s “I”m worth $1M” viral rant, right in the middle of last year’s enrollment and hiring period:
(Turns out Illig got a pay cut this year.)
We’ll see if Moffitt has a turnaround plan other than bitch about the rankings, pretend UO isn’t doing worse than other schools, and ask the wife for more money.
Live-blog: Yup, Moffitt puffs up envi law and CDR, then goes into national decline of law schools. He’s scrupulously avoiding responsibility for UO’s relative decline:
That said, Moffitt is actually cutting bloat. He’s cut 1 in 6 non-faculty positions (not clear if that’s staff or Assistant Dean types), spent the money on scholarships. And opening a satellite campus in Portland, trying to get his cut of the White-Stag pork. Clever strategy for law, but it will bleed still more money from UO’s general fund and undergrad tuition.
Then goes off on pitch for expanding undergrad law into business law. Seems reasonable, but he badly botched this last time, with the sports-conflict classes. The Portland project looks like a risky money-sink. Our money of course, not his. Should the trustees trust Moffitt to manage this? From what I hear his faculty don’t. He’s not doing a convincing job with some softball questions from the trustees.
2.2 College of Arts and Sciences – Dr. Andrew Marcus, Dean; Dr. Ian McNeely, Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education; Dr. Bruce Blonigen, Associate Dean for Social Sciences
Marcus starts off with a strong defense of the humanities and the liberal arts as the foundation of higher education. Go Marcus!
Blonigen goes through the social science stats, strengths of the departments, explains the disciplines. Go Blonigen!
Sorry, I missed McNeely.
3. Marketing and Branding Initiative Update – Tim Clevenger, Associate Vice President for Marketing, Communications & Brand Management
Once upon a time Oregonians knew how to brand things themselves:
Now we pay PR flacks like Tim Clevenger $209K to manage $20M campaigns by 160over90 to try and offset the damage big-time Duck sports have done to this place. Sorry, I don’t have the stomach to live-blog this crap.
I’ve got to go, I’ll resume live blogging at 1:30.
4. Reports and Public Comment
– Public Comment. My live blogging is light, try the UO student twitter hash tag, #UOCSPAN.
– Strategic Planning Report
Frances Bronet: Whole lot of planning going on. Will any of it matter to UO’s budgeting decisions, or will they continue to be driven by the preferences of UO’s Executive Leadership Team and UO’s donors? Does anyone know how we ended up with the current budget plan? Me neither.
– ASUO President’s Report
ASUO working on lobbying state legislature for more funds, cultural competency and campus change.
– Senate President’s Report
Rob Kyr: Senate has had a series of productive meetings dealing with:
1) Revising UO Policy on Policies. Done.
2) Approving, revising or appealing old OUS policies. Done with 30% of them. Senate and particularly Bonine has put together spreadsheet. Far more productive than Triplett
3) Fossil fuel divestment
4) Transparency award [Say, anyone got an administrator to nominate for this?]
5) Gender neutral bathrooms
6) “Not in our Name” response to Doug Park’s continued insults against Jane Doe
7) Legislation putting the Senate in charge of electing the FAR
8) Legislation requiring AD to pay some money to help out the academic budget
Senate committed to working with the Board.
Lillis: Congratulations on this work. Wants the Senate to work on the issues that are most critical to UO. [Which issues, who decides?]
– President’s Report
Jason Younker, UO Tribal Liaison, delivers a good talk about UO’s efforts to connect with the First Nations, along with Wendy Coltrane. Scott gets a Pendleton blanket.
12:00 pm – Recess for Small Group Lunches with Students
1:30 pm – Reconvene Public Meeting – Verification of quorum
Coltrane reports on sexual violence prevention. He’s got no credibility on this issue anymore. The buzzwords fly. Bronet talking about Gottfredson’s Review Panel: “the gravitas is extraordinary”.
Yes, gravitas would be one word for it.
5. Committee Reports / Resolutions
VPFA Jamie Moffitt gets into the UO financial situation and proposed tuition and fee increases.
About 100 UO students file in, lining the sides of the room, holding signs, standing quietly.
Things are getting tense. Administrators tell students to move back. The students are busy texting, and ignore them. Triplett puts away his laptop and prepares for action, shushes student. Bad move Chuck, but Dana Rognlie smooths it over. Thanks Dana.
The signs call out the administrators and coaches for their bloated salaries:
I’m looking for the economics student with a poster showing how UO should increase tuition and price discrimination, and use the revenue to subsidize low SES students.
Moffitt goes on. Lillis asks her a scripted question about health insurance costs. On cue she replies with data showing university employees cross-subsidize rates for other state employees. [$10-20M by UO per year, if I remember right.]
No mention from Moffitt of the extra cost the university now has to pay to make up things like Mike Bellotti’s $550K, mostly unfunded, pension.
Moffitt: Can’t get into labor negotiations, but I’m sure you can understand we’re looking at very significant issues for the budget.
Moffitt is much more subtle about trying to blame the unions for tuition increases than Rudnick was.
Meanwhile, more and more students file in. All very quiet, orderly, respectful.
Student trustee Helena Schlegel. Some students can cover these increases, perhaps with more debt. But, on the margin, this will lead to some students dropping out. Schlegel proposes amendment to cut the proposed increases by a modest 0.2 percentage points.
Moffitt: We did look at this. Tries to do math in head, fails. [It’s abut $1M]. Board waits patiently for Jamie and Brad to do the arithmetic. Schlegel helps them out, says it’s $900K.
Board asks what UO would cut if the tuition increase was cut. Moffitt – lots of unknown unknowns.
More and more students file in, many from the Chinese Students and Scholars Association. Interesting. Room is packed. “International Students Are Not Your ATM”. “Provost $360,000”. “Football Coach $3.35M”.
Kurt Wilcox: PEBB board predicts modest health insurance increases, way below Moffitt’s predictions. University has a history of exaggerating health insurance increases. Let’s use that to cut this proposed increase, just a bit, send a signal to the students that we care about costs.
Susan Gary speaks: I am listening to students. I’ve heard your pain. But the responsible thing to do is increase revenue.
Shelton: Amendment is to cut increase to 3.3% for Res, 3.4% for Non Res.
Roll call on amendment, it fails.
Back to the original resolution:
Roll call: Wilcox and Schlegel vote no, others yes.
Students start “Mike Check” shout out. “Admin pay continues to rise!” “And You Want More?” “We want an affordable education”. This goes on for a long time. “Students over Sports!”
It goes on longer.
“When our administration is overpaid what do we do? Stand up fight back.” The trustees look pretty miserable, who can blame them? This is going on too long.
It goes on longer.
A few trustees start using the opportunity to squeeze in a bathroom break. Now they’ve all left. Congrats students, you’ve succeeded in shutting down the debate, by shouting really loudly.
It goes on longer.
Now it’s “Where’s Scott Coltrane!”. Uh, he left because you were yelling in his face?
3:06 PM: Students start leaving.
Triplett busies himself cleaning up their posters. He and Brad Shelton share a “we survived the student uprising” moment of camaraderie.
Sorry to be so negative about this protest. I agree Moffitt and Shelton are hiding a lot of data, and I agree about the admin bloat, sports subsidies, etc. And obviously the students got the board’s attention. But the in their face shouting was out of control.
Of course, out of control often happens when you cut people out of the real decision process.
3:13PM. Lillis and a few other trustees file back in, Wilhelms starts looking for the rest of them.
3:21PM: Lillis gets a quorum back, restarts meeting.
Ralph asks if it will be possible to revisit the tuition increases if the legislature comes through?
Lillis asks if the board needs to revisit the process for setting tuition, given student outrage. Brad Shelton misses the point of the question, tries to justify how he did it.
‐‐Resolution: Acceptance of Gift of Real Property (pending March 4 committee approval)
5.1 Executive and Audit Committee Report and Referrals
‐‐ Resolution: Policy on University Policies
Lillis gives a shout out to the Senate, Wilhelms, Gary. Happy to see agreement on this process.
Wilhelms notes that the Board is “endorsing” this. The Senate and the President have already agreed to this, and it’s their business, not the board’s. Exactly. This is a big improvement in shared governance from where we were last year, when Susan Gary was hiding the delegation of authority and the pres search process from the faculty. I give Rob Kyr credit.
‐‐ Resolution: Board’s Role in Strike Situations (pending March 4 committee approval
Kurt Wilcox makes another pitch for this, as a reaction to Coltrane’s botched handling of the GTFF strike. Process to keep the board on top of things as backup. Susan Gary supports this, wants to make sure board is kept informed. Which did not happen with the GTFF.
Long discussion. Lillis lets everyone talk this one to death.
Gary, Wilcox, and Schlegel vote yes, rest no, fails.
‐‐ Resolution: Committee Approval of HECC Submissions (pending March 4 committee approval)
‐‐ Resolution: Consent Calendar (pending March 4 committee approval)
Moved to tomorrow.
5.4 Presidential Factors Committee Report
5.5 Presidential Search Committee Report
[Rescheduled for another meeting] 6. Overview of the University Counseling and Testing Center and the University Health Center – Dr. Robin Holmes, Vice President for Student Life; Michael Eyster, Director of Administration, Health Center; Dr. Shelly Kerr, Director of the Counseling and Testing Center
(Public Meeting Recessed)
7. Site visit(s)
Trustees will visit the Counseling and Testing Center and the University Health Center (co‐located) and the Oregon Humanities Center.
FRIDAY, MARCH 6, 2015 PUBLIC MEETING, FORD ALUMNI CENTER, GIUSTINA BALLROOM
8:00 – Board members meet with faculty. Faculty Trustee Susan Gary (Law) gives her talking points and etiquette tips here.
10:00 am (other times approximate) – Reconvene Public Meeting – Verification of quorum
8. University of Oregon Diversity Framework – Dr. Yvette Alex‐Assensoh, Vice President for Equity and Inclusion
9. Innovation, Tech Transfer and Economic Development – Dr. Brad Shelton, Interim Vice
President for Research and Innovation; Dr. Chuck Williams, Associate Vice President for Research
10. Department of Intercollegiate Athletics – Rob Mullens, Director of Intercollegiate Athletics; Eric Roedl, Executive Senior Associate Athletic Director for Finance and Administration