April 2003

Staff Advisory Council

Thursday, April 17, 2003

Notre Dame Room, LaFortune
1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Present: Don Anglin, Eugene Basker, Julann Bauer, Lisa Dahlin, Becky DeBruyn, Maryellen Fetherolf, Jim Gloster, Sharon Konopka, Stephanie Maenhout, Roberta McMahon, Susan McGonigal, Angela Miller McGraw, Jane Nielson, JoAnn Norris, Terry Oxender, Marv Pruett, Fred Sonneborn, Irene Stines, Terrell Ward-Thomas, Holly Webb, Melodie Wise
Absent: Martha Sue Abbott, Amy Dorn, Paula Horne, Joy Schosker, Jimi Sholty,
HR Liaisons: Sarah Misener, Kathy Fischer
Melodie Wise, Chair, called the meeting to order at 1:15 p.m. 
I. Approval of the March 20, 2003 Council Meeting Minutes
Melodie noted one correction should be made to the minutes: Stephanie Maenhout distributed the revised By-Laws, not Melodie. Marv Pruett made a motion to accept the corrected minutes; the motion was seconded by Terry Oxender and passed. 
II. Speaker – Bob Foldesi, Associate Vice President, Human Resources
Bob announced that Sarah Misener had given her resignation from her position in the Office of Human Resources. 
Partners Health Insurance will no longer be operating as of December 31, 2003. A committee is being formed to conduct an RFP (Request For Proposal). There will be a SAC representative on this committee. The process is scheduled to be completed in August and implemented January 1, 2004.
Public Affairs and Communications will be providing communication to campus and will replace the current HR Connections with another type of publication. Ed Cohen will be attending today’s meeting to get feedback from SAC members as to the format and the frequency of the publication. 
The University’s economic condition is strong, but not at the level we’ve been accustomed to. All departments have been asked to adopt budget cuts, but there is no hiring freeze expected. The vast majority of employees will not be affected by these cuts. The University is implementing a modest salary increase program for 2003 and department heads may also use other budget funds as available to supplement this program.
The Early Retirement Incentive program offered to several departments is now complete. Ninety-seven people were eligible and 39 took advantage of the early retirement incentive.
Over the next 3 years, a new software system, titled Renovaré, will be implemented in certain areas on campus. 
Bob opened the floor to questions or concerns:
Terry Oxender expressed concern that monitors will not be in the dorms next year. Human Resources has not heard any plans for this happening
Holly Webb wondered if the Laundry instituting production standards is a result of budget cuts. There is a concern that older employees are losing their jobs because they can’t meet these standards. Bob explained that business units on campus have been asked to become more self-sufficient, leading to some reorganization. St. Michael’s Laundry needs to be in a neutral or positive revenue generation position. Sarah explained there is a management team working to find the best way to have the Laundry be most viable. In changing performance expectations, management is attempting to make the Laundry a viable entity and not forcing anyone out the door due to age.
Marv Pruett questioned the continuation by the University of purchasing houses and then tearing them down if the budget is tight. Bob explained that the University is attempting to maintain the area surrounding campus and make it compatible to the design of the University. Timing is essential and when a house becomes available for sale, the University purchases it. 
Marv asked for clarification on the vehicle leasing program. The parking of University leased vehicles takes parking away from staff and service vehicles. This led to the question: Has this motorpool policy been announced campus-wide? Some communication was issued when the program first started, however, a presentation to SAC by the Transportation Manager will be requested.
Holly Webb explained that Food Services was one of the departments eligible for the Early Retirement Incentive. An employee’s birthday missed the cut off date by 20 days. Is there any way she might be eligible for this benefit? Bob explained that the cut off date must remain firm; if an exception is made for one employee, others would want the same.
Terrell Ward-Thomas requested that there be a rotation of Human Resource consultants, rather than having one consultant be assigned to a particular area. She feels that a different consultant may be able to see a new perspective of a situation. Bob explained that it is Human Resource’s objective to have a particular consultant be familiar with an area so they may handle a situation in an efficient manner.
Bob ended his time at the meeting by requesting he be allowed to meet with SAC on a quarterly basis. The committee felt that would be a very good idea. 
III. Committee Reports
The committee did not meet. The committee is still in need of a chair. In the absence of a chair being appointed, Susan McGonigal will schedule a room and time for the committee to meet.
Parking Appeals
Stephanie Maenhout who was appointed representative at the March meeting has not heard from Security about sitting in on the meetings. It was suggested she contact Phil Johnson to follow up with this.
Ad-Hoc Committee on Women’s Issues
The fashion show was well received with 45 people attending. The committee is pursuing topics for future meetings such as gardening tips, inviting a guest author to visit campus, Catering preview their new holiday fare.
By-Laws Committee
Stephanie distributed the Revised By-Laws that were originally distributed at the March 20th meeting. There were two corrections to be noted: 
Article IV.A.9 – Staff Newsletter should be replaced with HR Connections 
Article V.B.3 – The 4 points should be a, b, c, d rather than a, c, d, e. 
A motion to approve the changes was made by Don Anglin and was seconded by Irene Stines. Motion was passed.
Elections Committee
Two new representatives were introduced by Melodie:
District 4 – Debby Herczeg
District 14 – Barbara Robinson
This completes the committee with all districts represented. Melodie reminded everyone that every effort should be made to attend the monthly meetings. However, should someone not be able to attend, please notify one of the officers so that it will not be noted as an unexcused absence. 
SAC Web Page
JoAnn Norris will re-configure the web page as there were no discs available from the existing one. Kathy Fischer will check into the SAC picture that was taken at the March meeting to be included on the web site
IV. Discussion of Vacation Carry-Over
Sarah Misener explained that the committee’s goal is to recommend the University move to a policy that is beneficial to everyone. The suggestion will be to allow 2 to 3 days of vacation be carried over into the next year. She will draft a proposal to the committee for discussion which will then be presented to Bob Foldesi who will present it to appropriate University Administration. 
V. Open Discussion
Maryellen Fetheroff announced that during the summer the Health Center will be open from 8:00 to 4:00.
Sarah reported that Human Resources is in the process of conducting 2 RFPs: 
(1) Partners Health Insurance and (2) Employee Assistance Program. Sarah noted that we have been with Michiana Employee Assistance Program for 23 years and have been most satisfied with their services. At this time we would like to see what else is available. There should be 7-8 vendors submitting bids. SAC will be represented on these committees.
The Awards of Excellence Luncheon will be May 19th. Nominations have been received: 24 nominations for the Presidential Awards, 24 nominations for the Award of Merit, and 15 for the Team Irish. 
VI. Guest – Ed Cohen, Associate Director of Notre Dame Magazine
The Office of Public Affairs and Communication is exploring the feasibility of an all-campus publication. Ed Cohen is surveying various groups on campus to learn what type of communication employees would like to receive, how often they would like to receive it, and what would they like it to cover. 
Among the suggestions made were:
A regular feature of what various departments are doing
A list of community retailers that offer discounts to Notre Dame employees
Provide a printed version of the publication as there is a problem for those employees with no computers or computer access? How could we address the problem for non-English speaking employees?
VII. Set the Agenda for the May 1, 2003 Council Meeting
I. Approval of the April 17, 2003 Council Minutes
II. Committee Reports
- Promotions Committee
- Parking Appeals Committee
- Ad-Hoc Committee on Women’s Issues
- By-Laws Committee
- Web Page Article
- Vacation Carry-Over
III. Motor Pool Representative Visit
IV. OIT Representatives Visit
V. Open Discussion 
VI. Set Agenda for June 12, 2003 Council Meeting
At 3:00 a motion was made by Stephanie Maenhout to adjourn the Council meeting. Marv Pruett seconded the motion; the motion was passed.
Respectfully Submitted,
Staff Advisory Council