University Planning Council
Minutes for August 26, 2010
Present: Buffy Bagwell, Jane Fernandes, Eric Gant, Bill Haggard, Julie Heinitsh, Jim Kuhlman, Gabriela Lemus, Ted Meigs, Chris Miller, Patrice Mitchell, Kevin Moorhead, Linda Nelms, Dave Peifer, John Pierce, Anne Ponder, Christine Riley, Lorena Russell
Absent: Erica Abrams Locklear, Vic Foster, Courtney Galatioto, Archer Gravely, Gary Nallan
UPC Met on Thursday, August 26, 2010 from 3:30 pm to 5:10 pm.
Linda Nelms called the meeting to order at 3:30 pm. She let us know we would be addressing agenda items in a different order, because Chancellor Ponder was at the Board of Governors and would join us by 4:00 pm.
Ms. Nelms welcomed all members to the first meeting of UPC for the 2010-11 year, and asked each member to introduce him/herself and their role on campus. She reviewed some of the UPC practices for the new members.
Proposed UPC Priorities for 2010-011:
Ms. Nelms reviewed a draft of UPC priorities for the 2010-11 academic year, and described the role of UPC in each of the three areas described. She asked for additional suggestions and feedback regarding what work we would undertake this year. With no additional suggestions, she confirmed that UPC would focus on:
- University budget decisions – providing consultation and advice
- University fundraising priorities – providing consultation and advice
- Culture of Evidence – this includes working on reaffirmation of accreditation as the University’s
highest priority, promoting institutional effectiveness, and strategic plan accountability. Provost Fernandes noted that we would need to be more explicit about who would be responsible for achieving the strategic plan goals, and who would hold them accountable. It is not clear in the current framework of the strategic plan.
Chancellor’s Preliminary Remarks:
Chancellor Ponder joined us at 4:00 pm. She had just come from the Board of Governors meeting where Tom Ross (current president of Davidson College) was unanimously elected as the new President of the UNC system, beginning January 1, 2011. She described him as a ‘stellar choice,’ for North Carolina, the University system, and UNC Asheville in particular.
Preliminary Budget Planning for 2011-13:
Chancellor Ponder then gave a preview of the planning process for the 2011-13 biennial budget. We had known that it would be a difficult few years coming up, but did not know that we would need to plan for it so soon. Currently, the state is expecting a $3.3 billion shortfall on a $19 billion budget, which is a 17% shortfall.
The UNC Board of Governors has asked each campus to submit a plan for a 10% budget cut. In addition, we are asked to project what a $500 increase in tuition for 2011-12 (over and above the increase already planned for 2011-12) would do to mitigate this cut. For some perspective, UNC Asheville’s state budget is approximately $40 million, which means we would plan for a $4 million cut. ‘Business as usual’ will not be remotely possible at this level of cuts.
We’ve been asked to make two opposing arguments:
(1) We’re making this 10% cut plan so as to preserve our most important priorities and to inflict the least possible harm; and (2) A 10% cut presents a dire scenario for our campus with potential for irreparable harm.
Also in this plan, we’ll be asked for three things:
- 2011-13 enrollment projections
- Requests for campus safety funding
- Capital priorities (with little hope of getting this funded)
When asked what UPC’s role might be in providing budget consultation and advice, Chancellor Ponder and Linda Nelms suggested that UPC can be most helpful in suggesting what we need to invest in, even as we make substantial cuts across campus. Even though we will be using our University Strategy for Resource Allocation document as a guide, such a dire circumstance will require that we get more clarity on what that means. Chancellor Ponder suggested that we discuss that document and how we will use it at our September meeting.
UPC members were asked to think of other things that we might research and bring to the group for consideration, as we prepare to make difficult budget decisions going forward.
Chancellor Ponder distributed copies of the Board of Governors calendar of deadlines in developing the 2011-13 biennial budget. Operating budget priorities are due to GA from Chancellors by September 15.
Christine Riley reviewed the UPC role in stewarding and monitoring the Strategic Plan to date. She demonstrated the web-based Strategic Plan Dashboard, which is still under construction, and reviewed the workgroups that had already visited with UPC to discuss their work in developing the benchmarks, measurements, and targets. This raised the issue of what exactly the work groups are responsible for, and what role UPC has in holding them [or anyone else] accountable for meeting the targets. When we do not meet a target, who makes the plan to revise the work and who actually does the work? This has not been established in the implementation phase of the Strategic Plan, and needs to be determined and communicated.
Linda Nelms asked for suggestions as to which other Strategic Plan workgroups we would like to have come to UPC to describe their work. UPC members were asked to think about this, and to review the Dashboard before the next meeting (Christine will send out the link to the ‘under construction’ dashboard).
The meeting adjourned at 5:10 pm.
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