Mr. Steve Halverson (Chair), Mr. T. O’Neal Douglas, Ms. Donna Harper Gibbs, Mr. Wilfredo J. Gonzalez, Ms. Joan Wellhouse Newton, Mr. James Stallings, and Ms. Carol Thompson.
Chair Halverson convened the meeting at 1:07 p.m. He began the meeting by asking for a motion to approve the minutes from the November 28 meeting. Trustee Newton moved the acceptance of the minutes and Trustee Gonzalez seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously.
Chair Halverson welcomed and introduced Mr. Richard L. Crosby, Acting Vice President for the Division of Administration and Finance.
Provost Kline requested that Mauricio Gonzalez, Vice President for Student Affairs, explain the rational for the proposed 4.74% housing rental rate increase. Dr. Gonzalez introduced Mr. Paul Riel, University Housing Director, who reviewed the rental rate increases. Mr. Riel then called on Ms. Linda H. Anderson, Associate Vice President for Administration and Finance, to explain UNF’s revenue bonds as they relate to the University’s Housing operations.
Ms. Anderson explained:
The following points were made during discussion:
Chair Halverson summarized the discussion as follows: there is general consensus that the quality of housing is satisfactory; at the present time, there is not an occupancy issue/concern; there is a sensitivity by the University to rate increases; and the current proposed rate increases are designed to meet the needs of housing operating expenses and debt service.
Ms. Newton made a motion to approve the housing rental rate increase as proposed by the University. Mr. Stallings seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously.
Chair Halverson asked Karen Stone to provide information regarding the various fees that are charged by the University.
Ms. Stone provided the Committee with a matrix of student fees. The matrix listed the fee name, authority, and parameters. She explained that this document was developed to assist the Board in its understanding of legally authorized fees. She indicated that the information will need to be reviewed and updated following the legislative session. Chair Thompson indicated that there would likely be changes in fees this legislative session and further consideration of fees by the legislative task force charged with examining higher education funding.
Chair Halverson stated that there are many issues about which the Board will lack clarity for a while. He explained that the Board will have to have some flexibility but needs to know what their responsibilities are. Dr. Kline stated that historically the Legislature/Board of Regents were very tight about fee increases because they did not want to have back door tuition increases. Chair Halverson thanked Ms. Stone for providing the fee report.
Finance and Audit Committee Responsibilities Discussion Paper - At the last committee meeting, Chair Halverson offered to prepare a draft discussion paper concerning the committee’s structure and function. Mr. Van Vleck helped prepare the paper and Mr. Halverson has shared it with President Hopkins.
Chair Halverson asked the committee if they have any recommended changes and or comments about the discussion paper. Mr. Douglas complimented Chair Halverson for his outstanding work and commended him for all his effort. Board Chair Thompson also commended Chair Halverson for his leadership.
Chair Halverson stressed that is important for the Finance and Audit Committee to be proactive and have responsibility to the Legislature in helping to review and set policies and to partner with the University’s staff, the President, and the President’s staff.
Chair Halverson will meet with President Hopkins to further discuss the draft paper. He added that the Committee has a lot of learning to do as a board to gain understanding of the University and its processes.
Board Chair Thompson stated that conflicts of interest might be appropriate within the category of “other responsibilities” of the Board, and that the Board might wish to formally adopt a policy concerning conflicts of interest.
There being no further business to discuss, the meeting was adjourned at 2:15 p.m.
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