Campus Resources and Planning Committee
1 October, 2010
Present: Bart Finzel, Sara Haugen, Maddy Maxeiner, LeAnn Dean, Andy Sharpe, Josh Preston, Dave Swenson, Sydney Sweep, Zak Forde, Mark Privratsky, Margaret Kuchenreuther, Dave Aronson, Carol Marxen, Martin Seggelke
Johnson, Gwen Rudney, Pareena Lawrence, Jim Hall,
CRPC will not meet on October 15. Jim Hall will be present on October 22 to give an update about the campus technology plan.
Continued Discussion: Recommendation for Unused Fund 1000 money
Dave Swenson brought forth a series of proposals to be considered and voted upon individually:
1. CRPC be consulted on planned uses of the new campus contingency and strategic investment reserves.
Moved by Swenson, Mark Privratsky seconded.
Swenson said that this way, any use of the contingency fund is involved with CRPC. LeAnn Dean said that because we might have a new constitution, the motion ought to be amended to be flexible to apply to a CRPC successor committee.
Change would read : “CRPC or successor committees be consulted on planned uses of the new campus contingency and strategic investment reserves.”
Motion, with Dean’s amendment, passed unanimously.
2. At the end of each fiscal year, and within fiscal period 913; all unobligated carry forwards within fund 1000 accounts (where unobligated carry forward is interpreted to mean any carry forward larger than that budgeted for in the annual budget process) be added to the campus reserve accounts with 75% of the total unobligated carry forward going to the campus contingency reserve and 25% of the total going to a strategic investment reserve.
Moved by Swenson, Privratsky seconded.
Colleen Miller explained to the committee that 913 is a period in July where accounting adjustments can be made in financial records so that they are still included in June’s entry (aka still included in the previous fiscal year). Miller wanted Swenson to clarify what “unobligated” meant because this year, they did not apply any scrutiny to people saying they wanted to keep money from being counted in “unobligated carry forwards.” Miller also said that 913 gets dicey for accounting because people are moving around money right up to the due date; it is a practical difficulty.
Bart Finzel suggested that CRPC can only “recommend” policy. If the motion passes, the exact process to implement it is outside CPPC’s purview . Privratsky brought up concern about people spending recklessly before fiscal year ends. Swenson said he understood the concern, but hasn’t observed it as a reality elsewhere despite similar concerns.
Sara Haugen said in conversations at CRPC last year, there was talk of some % staying with home budgets if there was carry forward, but this motion claims 100% of carry forward. Swenson answered that budget managers claim some carry forward, but the rest of it would go to the reserve.
Andy Sharpe brought up a concern regarding planning ahead; if people know there is going to be carry forward but office budgets get cut, offices ought to have assurance that budgets will be stable for planning purposes. Jacquie Johnson said that we don’t know the extent of the cuts for the next biennium, but there will be some. Reserve is meant to help us get through it.
Swenson amends the motion to stay within the accounting fiscal year, and there was subsequent conversation about the language of the motion. Motion changed to read:
At the end of each fiscal year, all unobligated carry forwards within fund 1000 accounts (where unobligated carry forward is interpreted to mean any carry forward larger than that budgeted for in the annual budget process) be added to the campus reserve accounts with 75% of the total unobligated carry forward going to the campus contingency reserve and 25% of the total going to a strategic investment reserve.
Motion passed: Y-7, N-2, A-1
3. I move that: A task force be created to conduct a thorough review of all non-compensation related expense budgets within the 1000 fund. This task force will be charged with reviewing the needs and existing funding of all units in order to make recommendations for appropriate and equitable funding levels. This process should be completed in time that these recommendations can be used in budget development process for the 2011-2012 year.
Moved by Swenson, Privratsky seconded.
Pareena Lawrence said Social Science has a low budget—if budgets start low, then they stay low because budgets are set and then grow by the same increment over the years. This is an issue, but Lawrence was unsure about the motion being the right way to approach the problem. Lawrence also had a question re standard practices for budgeting on campus, for example, some people have software expenses built into their budgets, but other offices have to appeal to the Dean for software money when needed.
Dean raised a question of who this task force would report to. Margaret Kuchenreuther said that she hears colleagues say they don’t have tools to teach without spending their own money sometimes, so it is clear that budgets need to be rationalized.
Finzel noted we have two issues being raised by this discussion: 1) there is a budget problem that needs solution, 2) there is a motion for such a process on the floor, but is it the right process to solve the problem? Johnson mentioned that these problems and the motion may be answered with an update from her on the Blue Ribbon Committee’s progress.
Swenson moved to table, Sydney Sweep seconded. Motion passed unanimously.
Blue Ribbon Committee Update
Johnson presented a brief background on the committee and its creation stemming from the Financing the Future Report from the Board of Regents last October. The intent of the committee was to review the report and identify strategic initiatives to prepare for meeting future expenses in this economic recession. The committee recently convened and acknowledged & endorsed the following initiatives that are underway to meet these goals: improve recruitment/retention, expand green infrastructure, and implement a Carbon College program. The Carbon College is an umbrella label that includes courses intended for the community at-large (like Bio-Mass course), education programs revolving around understanding Carbon, green tours, and the like. Johnson indicated that through the compact process, it has received some start-up funding.
Three other ideas which were deemed high priority by the committee were to have “Resource Allocation Review,” to “educate, explore, discuss, describe, and promote better campus understanding of eLearning,” and to explore Curriculum initiatives (such as repackaging programs and creating “accelerated” degree programs). The Resource Allocation Review seems to relate to Swenson’s 3rd motion above.
Privratsky suggested Johnson make the handout explaining these items and share them publicly. Johnson said she was floating the information sheet around right now, but it will go out to the campus community in some form.
Zak Forde said that the problem of empty infrastructure on campus during the summer was also a concern that the Blue Ribbon Committee discussed, and the Carbon College helps resolve this problem. Finzel pointed out that there in the discussion, there have been two goals articulated for the Carbon College: 1) expanding on “green” identity/reputation, 2) utilizing summer building use. Johnson added that a third goal is to increase revenue. Kuchenreuther said the top rational should be education for people—more people should understand carbon.
Sharpe mentioned that Financial Aid should be included in the “retention” initiative, since financial aid availability has been decreased over the past few years.