Civil Service Council Meeting Minutes

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Civil Service Council Meeting Minutes

April 4, 2012

The April meeting of the Civil Service Council was called to order by Carolin Harvey, President.

Roll call of the members was taken by Elizabeth Cheek.

Members Present: Patrick Brumleve, Elizabeth Cheek, Mickel Cordes, Anita Eckhardt, Diane Frew, Shari Garnett, Tina Gerecke, Vera Gibbs, Carolin Harvey, Susan Howell, Randy Lowe, Karin McClure, Jason Phillips, Jesus Rosado, Anthony Travelstead, Karen Waldron.

Others present: Sheryl Lloyd, Cris Milliken, Mary Nippe.


The minutes for the meeting on March 7, 2012, were approved as presented.


Council President/Board of Trustees 
Carolin Harvey reported the constituency heads met. She also attended the march 22 Board meeting.

School of Medicine Civil Service Council 
Sheryl Lloyd reported: 1) the Springfield Council and the [Quality Council] raised a little over $2600 for the Harrisburg tornado fund. Another $4000 was raised through Public Affairs going to Red Cross; 2) the Council is currently conducting its spring fund raiser, an urban plant sale. Orders are being taken through next week, with proceeds going into their educational fund.

Human Resources (HR) 
Mary Nippe reported: 1) a SURS webinar is scheduled for April 11-12. Registration is required; 2) Janice Bonneville, Deputy Director of the Bureau of Benefits, will be on campus April 16-17. She will go over the State of Illinois’ insurance plans to make employees more aware of their benefits choices; 2) HB5531 (elimination of the tuition waiver) was defeated; 3) health insurance negotiations for this year are ongoing.


The following Council committee reports were submitted with the April 4 agenda: Elections.

Jason Phillips reported the committee met and set the agenda.

Karen reported that the Council and Education Assistance budget reports as of February 29, 2012, were emailed to all members prior to the meeting.

Education Assistance 
Anthony Travelstead reported on the March 22 meeting: The committee discussed the flea market, noting at this time there are 35 vendors who have signed up to participate. The Carbondale Band Boosters will provide concessions this year.

Staff Excellence Award (formerly Outstanding Civil Service Employee) 
Carolin Harvey reported there were five civil service nominees and one A/P staff nominee for the awards. The recipients of the award have been notified, but the names have not yet been made public.

Public Information 
Elizabeth Cheek reported the committee will meet immediately following the Council meeting. She also reminded Council members who have not yet done so to submit their bios.

Tina Gerecke reported on the April 4 meeting: 1) the committee is writing a letter to the Chancellor outlining, from their perspective, many of the concerns expressed by constituents, i.e., pension reforms, benefits, retirements, replacements, working conditions, etc. She hopes to have the letter presented to the Chancellor within two weeks. She asked if this is something the Council believes it could support. She indicated the committee would like to be able to say they presented it to the Council and has its support. Carolin clarified that the recommendation from the committee is that they will draft a letter indicating issues and concerns with civil service employees, not specifically range, but all civil service employees and will send that to the Chancellor. The Council unanimously endorsed the committee’s recommendations. Anita Eckhardt asked what percentage of civil service employees are range. Tina responded that in the fall, it was approximately 47%.

In other business, Tina Gerecke reported: 1) the committee was unsure whether a letter needed to be sent to the Chancellor on the July 1 salary increase; however, she was told that the increase will be automatic and will not be retroactive; 2) she received a call from a range employee on campus inquiring about Public Act 92-30599 and how the payout for sick leave is applied at the time of retirement. From what she has been told, only union members can get that benefit by nature of the act as it was implemented. Mary Nippe responded that state law requires that there be a provision in the collective bargaining agreement before the act can be [applied]. She explained that the Public Act allows any payable sick leave to be added to the value of an employee’s service for the purposes of adding money to her/his account or increasing the final rate of earnings.

The following Council committees did not meet or had no report: Bylaws and Civil Service Benefits.


Chancellor's Planning and Budget Advisory 
Carolin Harvey reported on the meeting she attended for Vicki Nelson: 1) there was discussion on the cost containment summary, which shows all the cost savings for the University. They are still working on how to get the information into a readable report that will show the actual cost savings; 2) the Chancellor discussed the 120 credit hours per college for graduation. Some colleges are reviewing their requirements now because some have more than 120 hours; 3) some of the non-academic units are conducting program reviews, and there is a shared business services subcommittee that is also working on a report. They hope to have it by the next meeting; 4) a report was distributed on the University of California Berkeley, which was in the same situation as SIU, i.e., in 1981-82, their budget was 52% state funding; in 2011-2012, it dropped to 10%. The report indicates the time it took to recover from that situation and some of the things they are doing to get back to where they want to be.

Intercollegiate Athletics Advisory 
Tina Gerecke reported she attended the March 22 meeting for Vicki Nelson (see appendix).

Parking and Traffic Appeals 
Elizabeth Cheek reported the committee met on March 30 and heard 12 appeals; 3 were granted; 1 was denied; 6 were no shows; and 2 were reduced.

The following constituency committees did not meet or had no report: Advisory Committee to Director of Public Safety, Affirmative Action Advisory, Chancellor’s Planning and Budget Advisory, Computing Advisory, Honorary Degrees, Naming University Facilities, Ombudsman Advisory Panel, Recreational Sports and Services Advisory, Student Center Advisory, Traffic and Parking, University Joint Benefits, UWPA.


The following special/other committee report was submitted with the April 4 agenda:Search Committee for Dean of College of Applied Sciences and Arts.

Legislative Advisory 
Karin McClure reported that HB3810 seeks to do away with the General Assembly scholarships. It has passed the House and is now in the Senate. There seems to be a great deal of support for that bill. Another bill that has passed the House is on the actuary used to re-examine the five different state pension systems. This has been done every five years, but a bill has now passed which states it has to be done every three years. Karin also reported that another item brought to her attention was the problem with the health insurance vendors last year and the report that came from the Office of the Auditor General. The report details many of the problems that occurred with that process (conflicts of interest, procedures not followed, etc.). The department awarded Blue Cross/Blue Shield 20 counties it did not even bid on, and documentation shows that BC/BS had zero primary care physicians in 24 counties that it was awarded. It is a rather lengthy report, but the summary is approximately nine pages. Karin indicated she would send it to Council members.

Search Committee for Dean of College of Agricultural Sciences 
Tina Gerecke reported that the fourth candidate interview is concluding today.

Search Committee for Dean of College of Education and Human Services 
Mickel Cordes reported the candidates are going through the final interview process.

Search Committee for Dean of Library Affairs 
Susan Howell reported there were 12 applicants for the position. The committee met and discussed their strengths and weaknesses, and then each committee member submitted their top four choices to the chair. Based on those, the top three were forwarded to the Provost. The three candidates are still interested in the position, and are waiting for approval from Affirmative Action. Carolin Harvey noted that last month, the Council discussed having additional representation on that committee [because Susan is serving as both the Council’s and the library’s representative on the committee]. She spoke with the Provost’s assistant about the Council’s concern, and the concern was forwarded to the Provost. His response was that Susan could serve a dual role. Carolin met with the Provost and was told the committee was large already (around 20 people), and at that point he did not want to add an additional person.

Search Committee for Vice Chancellor for Institutional Advancement 
Carolin Harvey reported that Vicki Nelson was the representative on the committee, and the last meeting was approximately two weeks ago. On March 23, Carolin received an email from Vicki indicating she would be unable to attend the meeting; however, Carolin did not open the email until after the committee had already met. She then contacted Diane Frew, who had previously indicated a willingness to serve on the committee, to see if she would be willing to step in. Unfortunately, the meeting that was missed was one of the most important because the committee was reviewing the applicants and cutting down the list. Carolin believed that adding someone to the committee at this point would be a disservice to that person. She suggested that in the future when assignments for search committees are made, [volunteers] please take into consideration the amount of time that is needed for a search committee. She added that in the future when she receives requests for committee representatives, she will ask about the time commitment.

The following special/other committees did not meet or had no report: Academic Calendar, Employee Advisory Committee to the Merit Board, Strategic Planning, Signage and SURS Members Advisory.


Randy Lowe asked if the Council would still be meeting at the Student Center on May 2. Carolin Harvey responded that the May meeting will be [in the Kaskaskia-Missouri Rooms] and will be open to all civil service employees. It will take place at noon, and refreshments will be provided.


Carolin Harvey reported that she received a resignation letter from Vicki Nelson, who noted that she is unable to continue on the Council because of workload and time constraints. Jason Phillips moved to accept Vicki’s resignation; seconded by Elizabeth Cheek. Motion carried.


Sheryl Lloyd reported that the recent security breach caused quite a stir on the Springfield campus. One of the reasons for concern was that they were unfamiliar with the individual who originated the email and thought it might be fraudulent. She added that one of the problems is that the University did not notify the staff at the School of Medicine Information Technology, so there was quite a bit of lost time in attempting to determine whether or not the email was real. They would like to know what happened, what type of data was affected and how that will change in the future so there are better reporting mechanisms and some assurances, since there are no longer paper checks, that personal information is really being kept secure, Karin McClure commented that she had some constituents express concern about the security breach as well and asked her to find out what is being done. It was noted that a virus was found on an inactive computer at Information Technology which had not been updated, but was connected to the network. Federal law requires that everyone who could possibly be affected had to be notified.