President John Delaney
I appreciate the comments made by the Executive Committee Chair, David Fenner. I look forward to continuing the good work we have been doing over the remaining 15months before my retirement. I believe the university community will be able to find a good president for UNF in about one year. Much like our young children change over time, universities will continue to change. We have many changes happening at UNF. We have Dean searches ongoing for three colleges, for Brooks College of Health, Hicks Honors College, and the College of Arts & Sciences. We have excellent finalists in those searches. Those positions should be filled by the summer. The Presidential search is prescribed by the Board of Governors. Ms. Joy Korman, Chair of the Board of Trustees, is working on the search process. There will be a 15 member search committee with faculty representation as well as community, Board of Governors, Board of Trustees, and alumni representation. Three names are required to be forwarded to the Board of Trustees for review. The final selection for University President will require Board of Governors approval. There are elections in the Fall of 2018, which could bring changes to Higher Education. Janet Owen will provide an update on the Florida Legislature.
I also want to thank FA President, Radha Pyati, for helping to organize the Interim Provost search.
Legislative Liaison Report - Janet Owen
The Florida Legislature’s 2017 regular 60-day session starts on Tuesday, March 7th!
I probably won’t be able to be with you in person for these meetings until after Friday, May 5th when the session ends, unless there are some early walkouts, which some veteran political strategists are predicting.
The other rumor is that this year’s budget will be very lean, almost like a federal Continuing Resolution, with lawmakers finishing on time. They would then return for the 2018 session and spend lots of money on projects in advance of the November 2018 election cycle.
One thing we can be certain about is that the budget negotiations won’t get underway until certain agreements between the House and Senate chambers can be reached on issues of funding for Lake Okeechobee, Enterprise Florida and Gaming. You will receive weekly Tallahassee Updates covering the budget negotiations and bills of relevance to higher education.
As I’ve mentioned before, the Senate President wants to allocate significant new revenue to the state universities to elevate FL’s rankings and reputation as a destination for high quality higher ed.
In the meantime, he has made the state colleges quite nervous about his lack of support for their growing
4-year degree programs, and for proposing changes to their performance funding model which puts 2-year and 4-year graduation rate pressure on them. The most significant bill in SB 2 – which contains all of the Sen. President’s state university priorities and will likely get voted out on the Senate floor in the first week of session – after which the House may put it in a dark closet and let it sit until they decide what to trade for it.
Unfortunately for the state universities, the first week of session will bring scrutiny by the House of Representatives on the fiscal practices of university foundations and direct support organizations. This will be followed by fairly severe budget cut exercises that will be bleak. But there are 60-days of this, and we will likely end up in a better place than we find ourselves in the first few weeks of the session.
Senate Confirmation Process for UNF Trustees
For UNF, the week will begin on Monday when 5 of the 6 new trustees will be up for approval by the Senate Education Committee as a part of the Senate Confirmation Process. This will include Trustees: Wamble-King, Joost, Hyde, Gonzalez and McElroy. They will go next to the Senate Committee on Ethics and Elections and then to the floor for confirmation.United Faculty of Florida – John White
Dan Dinsmore reported for the union. The Union would like to respond to some questions submitted to the Faculty Association in regard to faculty salary and gender. The UFF-UNF President has posted a response on the website with some data. There has been a request regarding administrator salaries. John White will be posting data regarding that question on the UFF website. Also, there was a question regarding external counsel, and the UFF will place information regarding that question on the UFF website as well.
As a reminder, faculty in each department are to create guidelines for promotion and tenure. Dan Dinsmore (email@example.com
) is available to help with feedback and/or timing questions.
Campus Safety Advisory Report – John Hale
Council members conducted a night safety walk last December of the northern quadrant of campus to inspect lighting levels, obstructions, over grown landscaping or other elements that could contribute to poor visibility or cause trip hazards. All parking lot and roadway lights have now been converted to LED type.
Council voted at the February meeting to place “special enforcement” no skateboarding signs for the area between the Robinson Theater (14A) and Housing Office (14B).
Much discussion about the no-smoking policy and what can be done to curb continued smoking on campus. Council was informed an enforceable policy would require a change to state statutes.
EH&S reports 79 accident incidents in 2016, compared to 51 in 2015. No real trends.
Safety Rangers are available to escort community members from the main campus to remote parking lots between 6:00pm and 10:00pm each week night. A Safety Ranger is also available to conduct escorts from the library until 2:00am, and at the Fountains residence facility from 10pm to 2am.
Campus Safety Statistics: 279 emergency phones, 43 public courtesy phones, 69 elevator phones located throughout campus (same as prior report). There are also 224 surveillance cameras operational throughout the campus (four more since last report).