Frances Dyke on RESPECTFUL WORKPLACE: HOW ARE WE DOING?

9/26/2011: Let’s just say the irony of this email invitation is not lost on those classified staff who have worked with Vice President Dyke:

An Invitation to Two Focus Groups for Classified Employees:    

RESPECTFUL WORKPLACE:  HOW ARE WE DOING?

The University of Oregon distributes a memo to the Campus Community each year reiterating our commitment to ensuring a respectful and inclusive working and learning environment http://hr.uoregon.edu/policy/RespectfulWorkplaceMemo2011.pdf .  It has been some time since we have taken the opportunity to consider in a practical way what the memo means.

Frances Dyke, VP for Finance & Administration, has initiated a series of focus groups that will inform how we can best operationalize the contents of the Respectful Workplace memo.  The goal of these focus groups is to learn from campus constituents and examine current thinking on the issue.  Input will be gathered and integrated into next steps to grow our capacity to be a respectful, inclusive and welcoming place to work. 

These two focus groups are intended for classified employees only.  Each focus group will have a maximum of 12 participants.

DATE:  Monday, October 24, 2011
TIME:  1:00-3:00pm
LOCATION:  EMU, Ben Linder Room

DATE:  Wednesday, October 26th, 2011
TIME:  8:30-10:30am
LOCATION:  EMU Board Room (4th Floor)

Facilitated by:  Annie Bentz from the Office of Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity.

If you are interested in attending, please express your interest to Kelly Zimmerman at kellyz@uoregon.edu or 346-6995 stating that you would like to participate in the Classified Employee Respectful Workplace Focus Group on [Date].  If you are able to attend either date, please indicate that.  Responses must be received no later than Friday, October 7th at 5:00pm.

Please note that we will strive to have a representative mix of classified employees (i.e. job type, department) from across campus.  We will get back to you with the final list of participants no later than October 14th.

Participation in this focus group should be considered release time, but please check with your supervisor to make sure that your absence will not interfere with unit operations.  If you have related questions or need assistance, please contact Randy Wardlow at rwardlow@uoregon.edu or 346-2965.

Tublitz, UO police bill

5/11/2011: Two interesting stories in the ODE. Nora Simon has a retrospective on UO Senate President Nathan Tublitz’s term:

Shared governance means the Senate and the administration have joint power to make decisions that affect the University, according to the University’s charter, and Tublitz has fought to keep that relationship balanced.

And Rockne Andrew Roll write on the scene at the legislative hearings on the UO Police bill:

Among the first to testify was Sen. Floyd Prozanski (D-Eugene), who shepherded the bill through the Senate, where it was approved last month. Prozanski was joined in the by Department of Public Safety Chief Doug Tripp and Frances Dyke, University vice president of finance and administration, who acknowledged Prozanski’s leadership on the issue.

Dyke said the costs of implementation would be “relatively minimal” — about $66,000 — and stressed that more than 80 percent of citations issued by DPS for misdemeanor crimes are issued to people who are not students.

$66,000? Really? Many people at UO believe that University of Oregon Vice President Frances Dyke is lying to the Oregon State Legislature, and that a more accurate measure of the cost is 4 to 7 faculty positions. You can hear the testimony here, the lying potential misrepresentation of the actual facts starts at 16:16.

The testimony does make clear that UO intends to cooperate with the city police and use its new powers to patrol and enforce laws (and UO policies?) in student residential areas surrounding the campus. So, my conspiracy view of the reason UO pushed this so hard is that it will allow the UO police to prevent the release of the names of the athletes they arrest, by using the new FERPA exemption from the state public records law, which they recently obtained from Attorney General Kroger.

Linton and Dyke: Shit happens

4/26/2010:  Read it all. Full text here.

This is an astoundingly revealing letter to the UO research community, from VP for Research Rich Linton and VP for Finance and Administration Frances Dyke. Both senior administrators are now leaving their jobs. Linton was fired did not have his contract renewed by Lariviere last year and has been replaced by Kim Espy, after a national search – she was the committee’s favorite. The search to replace Frances Dyke started last month. (A search which includes some faculty representation only after protests to Provost Bean, who had stacked the original committee.)

Strip out the self-serving soul-destroying bureaucratic double-speak in their letter (whom do you two think you are fooling at this point, besides yourselves?) and it verifies the basic story we’ve been posting for the past 2 years:

Ms Dyke and former President Frohnmayer spent too much UO research money on their own pet administrative projects, and too little on research support. Linton didn’t stand up to them, so the feds cut our ICC rate to 42% – the lowest I’ve ever heard of.

Linton then made a very unfortunate hire for head of ORSA and failed to supervise her, even after repeated warnings from the UO research community. After the collapse of the office, Linton and Dyke hired the Huron Consulting firm – at a cost of nearly $2 million, paid out of the shrunken ICC research funds that are supposed to support science – to bail the UO administration out of that hole, and help keep it all covered up. (Huron was already on site, working on a small consulting contract.)

UO Matters had to make a petition to the Oregon Attorney General and then pay UO’s public records officer Liz Denecke to get the documentation on this. Ms Denecke is trying to charge us still more money to see the Huron reports – and Linton and Dyke have ignored our request that they give these up. In their letter they say they will release the final report, already delayed by months – but don’t mention the interim reports. Not exactly transparent.

But the real question is this: Why did Linton and Dyke write this letter? It’s far more revealing than anything we’ve heard from the UO administration in years, and at the same time it is astonishingly self-serving and incomplete.

Did President Lariviere make them do it before he signed their retirement contracts – as he made Mike Bellotti sit there at that press conference and take it, in order to get his $2.3 million payoff? Or did UO’s new VP for Research, Kim Espy, insist that they clean up their own mess before they bail? Or did the Huron consulting firm get tired of looking like the bad guys, and make UO write it?

Why does it matter? Because the only hope for UO is that President Richard Lariviere is getting really, really pissed, and that he kicks some administrative ass. Now. Fire them for cause. Have Doug Tripp stand there with his Tazer while they clean out their offices. Search their pockets for the uttermost farthing. No more golden parachutes. And then start digging around for what else is buried under Johnson Hall and the Jock Box.

Thanks, I feel much better now. What? Of course I’m a team player. Sure – let’s all pull together and go in for the big win. OK, I’ll get with the program, and drop the PR requests and the FOIA too.

But where is our research money?

ORSA update from Rich Linton

4/11/2011: VP for Research Rich Linton has now issued an explanation of who is running ORSA (Moira Kiltie has just been promoted) and who all the Huron consultants are. Rich is not providing a word on the cost – but here are the contracts and $1.5 million in invoices. Another $500,000 is budgeted until June.

In case you are not following this, rumor is that this is all fallout from a botched hire and inadequate supervision. Who knows – obviously Rich is not telling, much less giving the faculty their research money back!

I’m sure the memo – emailed to all PIs – had nothing to do with our public records requests. Meanwhile, here’s the announcement of Rich’s retirement:

The following message is sent on behalf of Senior Vice President and Provost Jim Bean –

Colleagues –

Rich Linton, Vice President for Research and Graduate Studies, has announced plans to step down from his position no later than June 30, 2011.  Rich has had a dramatic impact on the UO’s research enterprise and interdisciplinary initiatives during the past decade. For example, UO’s growth rate in research expenditures per faculty member over the last five years was 50%, ranking third best within the AAU (FY03-08, NSF’s latest available data). Rich has been instrumental in providing critical support of faculty recruitment and retention, graduate education, interdisciplinary centers and initiatives, research infrastructure, multi-institutional partnerships, and technology transfer.   Rich has served the institution with great skill, energy, good will and dedication.

A national search will begin presently and a search firm will be hired in the near future.  Rich and I will especially appreciate your support and assistance in this time of transition.  I wish Rich all the best as he looks toward new leadership opportunities and challenges.

Regards, Jim (Bean)

RSVP for the retirement party here. I wonder what sort of golden parachutes Linton and Frances Dyke are going to get, and how much it will cost us.

Eat shit in the dark, you mushrooms:

3/6/2011: The only regular professor on the search committee for the Frances Dyke replacement is Phil Romero. Phil was the B-school dean before Jim Bean, left for a job at CSU – Los Angeles, but is now apparently back teaching business classes at UO.

There is no one else among the entire UO teaching and research faculty that President Lariviere and Provost Bean trust enough to be in the loop on the hire of our new Chief Financial Officer. There is not a single member of the UO Senate Budget Committee, of which our joint governance documents say:

The Senate Budget Committee is the University’s primary agency for faculty and student participation in fiscal policy. … The Senate Budget Committee is charged to inform itself about issues that affect the financial well-being of the University. It will advise the President and the senate on budgetary policy and long-term financial strategies, and will keep the University Senate informed about financial matters. …

Here’s the announcement:

Colleagues:

I am pleased to share with you the individuals listed below have agreed to serve on the search committee for the university’s CFO. We have chosen Issacson, Miller as the search firm to assist the UO in recruiting our next Chief Financial Officer. Isaacson, Miller has supported several recent searches for the university, including the vice provost for enrollment management and dean of the School of Law.

We will communicate more on timelines and format as we move forward.
Please let me know if you have any questions.

All the best, Richard Lariviere

Search Committee:

Jim Bean, Senior Vice President and Provost, Chair
Tom Donohue, Student Head, UO Investment Group
Tim Gleason, Dean, School of Journalism and Communication
Gary Malone, Co-Generation Engineer, Campus Operations and Chief Steward SEIU
Jamie Moffitt, Executive Senior Athletic Director for Finance and Administration, Intercollegiate Athletics
Jay Namyet, Chief Investment Officer, UO Foundation
Marianne Nichols, Senior Associate Dean and Chief of Operations, College of Arts and Sciences
Michael Redding, Vice President for University Relations
Phil Romero, Professor of Business, Lundquist College of Business
Brad Shelton, Vice Provost for Budget and Resource
Stacey Squires, UO Foundation Trustee and President, Artisan Hedge Management, Inc.

2 people from the UO Foundation. Does this mean we get 2 professors on their board? No. State law forbids that!

VP Frances Dyke "retires" – in 16 months

2/21/2011 update. President Lariviere and Provost Bean must have got an earful about Frances Dyke’s announcement that she would stay on until summer 2012. Today Bean announces the search will get underway within a few weeks, and she will be replaced as soon as we can hire someone else.

Of course we’ll pay her $212,000 to not do some sinecure for 2011-2012. Cheap, and a very good decision by Bean/Lariviere. That bit at the end about a continuing relationship though? Please don’t. I’m no economist, but think about the long-run incentives: the more you screw up, the more we will pay you to leave.

The following message is forwarded on behalf of Senior Vice President and Provost Jim Bean –

Last week France Dyke announced her retirement on June 30, 2012 after 21 years of outstanding service to the University of Oregon.  We greatly appreciate the advance notice she has given us to find a successor.  In the near future, we will initiate a national search with the assistance of a search firm. President Lariviere has asked me to chair the search and we will announce the search committee membership within a few weeks.

Frances Dyke has a long and distinguished history with UO.  She received her MBA from the Lundquist College of Business in 1986, began working here as an analyst in the budget office in 1991, working her way up through several positions, leading to her appointment as Vice President for Finance and Administration in 2005.  She is highly respected by her colleagues nationally, within the OUS system, and on the campus.  Her portfolio is broad including campus operations, human resources, affirmative action and equal opportunity, campus planning, risk management, public safety, budgeting and finance, institutional research, and emergency management. Frances and her team have met the challenges of a growing and evolving campus and business environment with passion and commitment.  We thank her for her many significant contributions to our community.

We are pleased to benefit from Frances’ leadership until a successor is found.  We wish Frances and Tom the best for the next chapter of their lives and anticipate that it will include a continuing relationship with the University of Oregon.

2/15/2011: I stopped reading her resignation when I got to the part in bold. Richard Lariviere has been at UO almost 2 years. (His consulting contract started in May 2009). It’s unbelievable that he has let Frances Dyke run UO this long. Now he intends to let her do so for another 16 months.

As for her claim that *she* made this “very personal decision” and then informed Lariviere and Provost Bean about it. Either she is delusional, or she really is in charge of UO, to the point that she – not her supposed bosses – decide when and how she leaves. At this point, I’d say it’s 40/60 on that.

16 more months. The faculty will survive – but please join me in a prayer for the UO staff and the OAs. Here’s her 07-09 contract, the most recent I’ve got.

Subject: Campus message from VPFA
February 15, 2011

Dear Colleagues,

I am writing to inform you of my decision to retire from the university on June 30, 2012.  Once I made this very personal decision I informed the provost and the president in order to allow the university ample opportunity to conduct a search and provide time for overlap and a smooth transition for this large portfolio.

After joining the university in 1991, I served in a variety of positions and became vice president for finance and administration in 2005.  During these years the university has experienced significant growth in people, in infrastructure and in mission and is now poised at a moment of opportunity for new growth and transformation.  This is an ideal time for me to step aside and let the next generation of leadership pursue goals that support these new opportunities.

I am proud of the work that my fine colleagues and I have accomplished in all areas of administrative and financial infrastructure.  These creative and hard working individuals from both VPFA and other areas of the university have been instrumental in helping this university move forward and build a robust and flexible framework to support our instructional, research and public service goals.  I offer them my personal thanks for their dedication, ideas and support.  They have wonderful insight and important roles to play in the UO’s continued success.

Since so much of the work in this portfolio is behind the scenes it is important to provide acknowledgment with a few examples.  Professional development and training opportunities have been refocused and expanded; access to childcare has increased; advocacy for increased salaries and benefits has become more public; programming, staffing and policy development initiatives provide stronger support for our officers of administration.  The emergency management portfolio was created and public safety was restructured to ensure responsive services and collaborative programming.  Funding for campus facilities and campus planning has been stabilized, a strong capital construction unit was formed, a new power station is online and major capital and deferred maintenance projects are on time and on budget.  Stronger sustainable building practices are moving forward.  The UO is providing leadership in working with the Minority, Women and Emerging Small Business (MWESB) community. Business services have been redesigned and strengthened resulting in a university managed in a sound and fiscally responsible manner that is moving forward despite years of disinvestment from the state.  It has a network of task forces and advisory groups in place to ensure fully accountable and transparent management for all funds. These are but a few of the many initiatives which I have sponsored that demonstrate strong commitment to sustaining and strengthening this complex enterprise.

I cannot think of a better career than one in higher education.  Its mission provides the backbone for a strong and free society.  I look forward to my work through June 2012 and with enthusiasm to other opportunities that will present themselves to me after my retirement date.

With warm regards,

Frances Dyke
Vice President for Finance and Administration

From the comments: “other opportunities that will present themselves to me after my retirement date.” Yes, that probably does mean a Frohnmayer/Davis/Moseley type golden parachute: half pay for 5 years for doing jack-shit. She’s probably delaying her retirement so that she can get a July 2011 raise and pad her PERS a bit more, on top of that.

unauthorized retirement announcement

2/17/2011: The OA’s have been waiting for an email like this:

Colleagues:

Yesterday many of you received an email from Frances Dyke, announcing that she “had made this very personal decision” to retire as VP for Finance and Administration, effective June 30 2012.

Contrary to the impression made in her unauthorized email, I am in charge, not her. I have made the decision that Ms Dyke will serve the remainder of her time at UO as an adjunct accounting instructor in the business school, starting next quarter.

I would like to thank Ms Dyke for her years of service to UO. We’ve learned something from those years, and this time we will have an open national search for this important job. I will appoint an interim VPFA shortly.

Regards,
Provost Jim Bean

But it’s just a dream. Bean is not going to send this email, not least because he himself was appointed to his provost job without a open national search. Dyke really is going to be VPFA until 2012.

No police experience?

2/8/2011 update: Liz Denecke responds to our request for a little transparency about the current DPS Director and his two predecessors:

Nice to hear from you. 

As to your first request, the resumes and cover letters from the
employment applications for Richard Turkiewicz, Kevin Williams, and
Douglas Tripp became faculty records once they were hired.  Faculty
records are not public records for the purpose of the public records
law.

Like I’ve said: You don’t like the Eugene PD’s citizen review process? Wait til you see UO’s.

2/4/2011: Who is in running UO? What are they thinking?

I’m not necessarily opposed to an armed UO campus police force. I am opposed to an armed campus police force run by Frances Dyke. Too many lies for me. It’s going to save us $73,000? Isn’t the budget already up 110%? You haven’t decided if they will be armed? Really? Then why spend $1,300 at the shooting range? How much have spent writing the bill and lobbying Prozanski? (And why isn’t Doug Tripp on the Government Ethics Commission’s lobbyist list?)

Aren’t you hiring a new Security Director just for this? How much will that office cost? (Update – actually, that job looks like it’s for an entirely different expansion of DPS – read the ad.)

And is it true Doug Tripp has no actual police experience? That’s what an anonymous commenter claims. Well, let’s find out – and clear up a little history while we’re at it, with an email to UO’s public records officer, Liz Denecke:

This is a a public records request for

a) copies of the resumes and cover letters from the employment applications for the last 3 UO DPS director hires: Richard Turkiewicz, Kevin Williams, and Douglas Tripp

b) copies of the employment applications and cover letters for all applications for the DPS Director of Security position posted at http://hr.uoregon.edu/jobs/unclassified.php?id=3175

I ask for a fee waiver on the grounds of public interest. I also ask for speedy service. I can provide evidence for both the public interest and the need for speed, on request. Please respond to each part of this request as soon as you have the relevant documents.

I am ccing Frances Dyke on this, since she did the DPS Director hiring, and someone in her office should have those files, and Doug Tripp since he has the Security Director files.

We will keep you posted on responses. And thanks, anonymous commentator! Good idea.

Questions to ask Frances Dyke

at the UO Police Force meeting today, 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., Feb 2, in the Fir Room of the EMU:

1) As you know your previous two hires as DPS Director did not have their contracts renewed, under odd circumstances. The first was Richard Turkiewicz, whom you hired from his position as University of Central Florida campus police chief.

That hire took place while Turkiewicz was under investigation for his role in the accidental shooting death of an armed University of Central Florida officer, during a botched attempt to curtail underage drinking at a bowl game. This case exemplifies why attempts to stop underage drinking is a futile and needless endeavor. There are many avenues to getting a fake ID, websites like Idmoose.com allow students to acquire false identification documents easily. In some cases, it can be cheaper than getting legitimate identification. Even with nanny-state laws and the threat of violence from overbearing cops, students want to party like adults and will continue to utilize idgod fake ids to that end.

The officer, in plainclothes, and in the process of trying to arrest an underage student, drew his weapon, pointed it at the student’s head, and then fired it into the air. The campus officer was then shot and killed, by a nearby city police officer. (http://www.clickorlando.com/news/7165669/detail.html)

Later, UO ODE reporter Ryan Knutson won a prize for his investigative reporting involving expense account abuse by Turkiewicz during his time at UO. Essentially he refused to pay small costs for campus officers to get training on how to deal with mentally disturbed people while spending thousands on a trip to a conference at a Florida golf resort. The article (http://oregonarena.wordpress.com/files/2008/10/dps.pdf) says

Frances Dyke, vice president for finance and administration, approved Turkiewicz’s trip. She declined to comment on the trip or Turkiewicz’s need for attending, but did say that “directors can’t neglect their own professional development because they won’t stay cutting edge if they do.”

Q: Did you know about the shooting incident when you hired Chief Turkiewicz? How did it enter into your hiring decision? What roles did the shooting investigation and the expense account incident play in your decision not to renew Turkiewicz’s contract? What other factors, if any, entered that decision?

2) Your next hire for DPS Director, Kevin Williams, was reassigned from his Director’s position and then left UO, also under odd circumstances.

Q: What can you tell us about those circumstances? Do you feel this hire was a mistake?

3) What sort of process will UO put in place for citizen review of the performance of the DPS Director and the new Security Director? Who will be in charge? Who will be on the committee? Will the meetings and reports be public?

4) What process is UO going to put in place to review incidents such as the shooting death described above? Who will be in charge? Who will be on the committee? Will incidents, complaints, meetings and reports be public?

5) Given your past refusal to answer substantive questions about DPS, why should we believe you now when you say there will be trust and transparency on these issues?

VPFA Dyke fires Capt. Horner

1/20/2011: Rumor has it that Frances Dyke has struck again, firing longtime DPS Captain Herb Horner. Apparently she decided she could blame him for the Matt Court $10 parking screw-up. My understanding is that Horner held DPS together through two of Ms. Dyke’s botched DPS Director hires: Richard Turkiewicz and Kevin Williams. Neither of which she has ever explained. So of course Horner has to go: he knows too much, and reminds her and UO of her incompetence. Let me say again the firing is just a rumor at this point, Horner is still listed on the DPS website as an employee.

Wed Senate meeting

11/9/2010: The Senate has an unusually full agenda for tomorrow – everything from the ORI building to a report by Frances Dyke on parking.

The opposition to the ORI project has dug up some documents that apparently show the decisions to approve the building were made without the necessary community input. I suspect they are correct. But I think they are turning the perfect into the enemy of the good. Let’s just build it.

Regarding parking, who knows. Ms Dyke’s normal approach is throw out a few semi-relevant numbers her staff has put together, and then get pissy if anyone challenges her. That or she pours on the saccharin, and says she doesn’t have the numbers but she will get back to you. She won’t. If you call her on this, she will act like you are the one being rude. Right. Remember the furlough Town Hall? Or the Senate meeting on financial transparency?

This is a case of the bad being the enemy of the good. UO needs a new VPFA. It’s past time for Provost Bean to decide who will fill her job while he leads a national search. The longer this goes on the more embarrassing for UO and the people who run it.


Senate Meeting Agenda – November 10, 2010
Law School 175, 3:00‐5:00 pm

3:00 pm 1. Call to order
       1.1 Approval of the Minutes of the 13 October 2010 Meeting
3:05 pm 2. State of the University
2.1 Remarks by President Lariviere and/or Provost Bean
3:20 pm 3. New Business
3.1 Motion US10/11-02: Motion to adopt Research Misconduct Policy, Lynette Schenkel & Rob Horner
3.2 Resolution US10/11-04: Resolution requesting the University to comply with the existing Intergovernmental agreement on the Riverfront Research Park, Zach Stark-MacMillan, Frank Stahl, Ron Lovinger, Bitty Roy and others
3.3 Discussion of updated Retired and Emeritus Faculty Policy, Frank Stahl and Russ Tomlin
3.4 Senate letter to Eugene Congressional delegation about the loss of the UO Post Office
3.5 Senate Budget Committee Report on New Partnership Proposal, John Chalmers
4:10 pm 4. Open Discussion: New Partnership Proposal, President Lariviere & John Chalmers, Senate Budget Committee
4:40 pm 5. Reports
5.1 Update on Smoke Free Campus resolution US08/09-06, Amelie Rousseau, ASUO President
5.2 Update on Parking, Frances Dyke, Vice President for Finance and Administration
4:55 pm 6. Announcements and Communications from the Floor
6.1 Notice of Motion(s)
5:00 pm 7. Adjournment

UO Police Department memo from Frances Dyke

9/15/2010: Despite the steady national, state, and local declines in property crime and violent crime (reported in recent front page stories in the RG and the Oregonian), and the continued decline in state support for UO, it turns out that Frances Dyke has authorized some pretty serious and expensive efforts to convert UO Department of Public Safety to a UO Police Department.

DPS Director Doug Tripp points us to his helpful website at http://safetyweb.uoregon.edu/campus-policing, on this topic, which includes this memo from VP for Finance Frances Dyke:

Whenever the academic side asks for more resources for teaching and research, UO administrators have a stock answer to close down the discussion: “Where do you want us to get the money?” In six years the DPS budget has increased 110%, and a Police Department is going to cost far, far more. For example, the draft legislation includes the creation of a police academy for university officers:

(7) Clarify the Department of Public Safety Standards and Training’s responsibility under ORS 352.385(2) to train university public safety officers [special campus security officers] such that an annual basic university public safety officer academy is established and that DPSST will certify those officers upon successful completion of such training.

So, has anyone asked Frances where the money is going to come from for all this? What was her answer? Why is she in charge of decisions about university priorities?

VP for Research Rich Linton gets a terminal contract:

Update: Linton’s own public statement is here:

It is satisfying for me to leave knowing that the UO has seen increasing research accomplishments by its faculty, including sustained growth in sponsored research funding, interdisciplinary research initiatives and innovations supporting technology transfer and development. I am deeply grateful for our faculty, staff, students and my administrative colleagues who are directly responsible for these advances. 

Other than the ICC issue – which was the result of decisions made by Frances Dyke, Linda Brady, and Dave Frohnmayer, not Rich Linton – we don’t know the real story on this. So Linton gets the last word, and it’s classy.

5/26/2010: I don’t know the back story on this “confidential” decision to replace VP for Research Rich Linton. Without dissing Rich, I have to say I find it remarkable how Provost Bean can say “UO’s growth rate in research expenditures per faculty member over the last five years was 50% … ” instead of “The growth in the research awards earned per UO faculty member ….”. I do like that new paneling in Johnson Hall though, nice to see that Frances Dyke pissed away our ICC research money on first class work.

From: owner-deans-dirs@lists.uoregon.edu [mailto:owner-deans-dirs@lists.uoregon.edu] On Behalf Of Susan Peter
Sent: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 3:13 PM
To: deans-dirs@lists.uoregon.edu
Subject: deans-dirs: Rich Linton Announcement
Sensitivity: Confidential

The following message is sent on behalf of Senior Vice President and Provost Jim Bean –

Colleagues –

Rich Linton, Vice President for Research and Graduate Studies, has announced plans to step down from his position no later than June 30, 2011.  Rich has had a dramatic impact on the UO’s research enterprise and interdisciplinary initiatives during the past decade. For example, UO’s growth rate in research expenditures per faculty member over the last five years was 50%, ranking third best within the AAU (FY03-08, NSF’s latest available data). Rich has been instrumental in providing critical support of faculty recruitment and retention, graduate education, interdisciplinary centers and initiatives, research infrastructure, multi-institutional partnerships, and technology transfer.   Rich has served the institution with great skill, energy, good will and dedication.

A national search will begin presently and a search firm will be hired in the near future.  Rich and I will especially appreciate your support and assistance in this time of transition.  I wish Rich all the best as he looks toward new leadership opportunities and challenges.

Regards, Jim

UO’s ICC rate cut – by $4 million per year.

10/6/2009 update: We hear from many disparate sources that this $4 million screw-up came from Frances Dyke’s office, not from Rich Linton’s.

  • Version A is that Frances did not take the DHHS documentation request seriously, and did not submit sufficient documentation.
  • Version B is that Frances took the DHHS documentation request seriously, but so much of the money had been spent on non-research items there was nothing that could be done.
  • Version C (everyone agrees this is part of the story) is that Frances’ accounting system is so messed up she can’t document anything convincingly.
  • Version D is that Version C is on purpose: there have been so many diversions of funds that it is important for the people at the top to be able to argue they don’t know the details.
  • Version E is that the person who had collected the data for the previous review left and Frances forgot to tell the replacement this was part of the job.

Version D would be consistent with her efforts to hide accounting information: removing BANNER codes from the web, exaggerating the cost and delaying efforts to post accounting records online – something OSU did several years ago. We will get to the bottom of this, because that’s what we do here. Thanks to our readers for the plethora of tips on this.

9/29/2009: Back in May we reported on the cut in UO’s F&A ICC overhead rate from 48% to 42%. (It had been 50% until 2000). This rate is negotiated between VP for Research Rich Linton and DHHS every few years and then applies to all federal grants. The idea is that a university has many legitimate expenses related to research, but not covered explicitly in the grants awarded to researchers. The ICC money goes for lab space, startup, GTFs, etc. It’s the bread and butter of research at UO, and amounts to about $30 million per year.

By our math – and keep in mind this is preliminary – this is a hit of about $4 million per year to UO’s research efforts. So the loss will approximately offset all annual research expenditures from the Lokey gifts. Huge. Here is Linton’s memo explaining how he will cut budgets.

We have been trying to figure out how the hell this happened. Here is the memo from the DHHS office that negotiates these rates with Linton’s office, stating the new rates but not explaining the cut. There is some speculation going around campus – like maybe the NIH didn’t think Moseley’s travel expenses and remodeling Frances Dyke’s office counted as legitimate research support? But here at UO Matters we deal in facts and public records – not rumor, innuendo and vitriol. And we will have those public records soon. (Meanwhile, please keep sending rumors and innuendi to uomatters@gmail.com, or post anonymously in the comments.)

Update, from an email from the federal employee in charge of the negotiations with UO:

The University of Oregon submitted a facilities and administrative rate proposal based on the fiscal year ending June 30, 2006. The proposed rate of 46.3% based on actual cost was lower than their current rate of 48%. The University proposed higher rates for the future years based on projections. As a result of our review of the proposal, we made adjustments to the proposed rates for the following reasons:(i) the useful life for the building depreciation was too short, (ii) the organized research base was understated, and (iii) adjusted rooms identified as 100% research to something lower. The University rates were negotiated with University Officials Richard Linton, Laura Hubbard, Paula Roberts. A summary of the proposed rates and our adjustments to the rates were provided to the University’s consultant (Maximus) and the University.

The Maximus website says:

In order to receive the highest rate possible, and to ensure compliance with OMB circular A-21, colleges and universities should consider outsourcing the F&A rate development process to MAXIMUS.

How to interpret what happened? The UO administration has been spending a chunk of the ICC research money that has been coming in for non-research things like Bend, Portland, and their other pet projects. About $4M per year. The feds caught them at it, didn’t believe their promises to stop, and cut them off. We will get more documentation – you can count on it – but can you read this any other way?
5/6/2009:

VP for Research Rich Linton has just announced he’s cutting the ICC grant money he sends back to departments to support research – money that comes from the hard work of UO faculty, and which is legally supposed to support UO research efforts. Any questions about where it’s really going? More on this soon.