Monday, August 24, 2015

The August meeting of the SOCCCD Board of Trustees: another quiet night at the $711 million district

     Please see also Tere's Board Meeting Highlights.
     6:32 - well, I just got here, and it looks like the meeting could start very soon. Three or four of the trustees are not yet in the room, however.
     As you know, recently, Nancy Padberg, who represented area 4, which includes San Clemente and environs, resigned, owing to her health. A few days ago, the board acted to select Terri Whitt, formerly an instructor in SC's nursing program, as Nancy's replacement. Whitt seems to be an excellent choice.
     Nevertheless, some of us at IVC are a little worried that, with former faculty and administrators of SC (Whitt, Wright, Jay [sort of]) on the board, and no former faculty/administrators of IVC on the board, IVC will recede still further into oblivion (as far as trustees are concerned). In the past, I have snarkified over such phenomena as Trustee Wright's routine references to "our team," and our effort, referring, invariably, specifically to Saddleback College's team or effort. This tendency among trustees will soon become interesting, given demographic projections, which indicate that, as thing now look, IVC will eclipse SC in size in the forseeable future. (As you know, recently, an effort to locate district offices geographically in between the two colleges was shot down by trustees for fiscal reasons. To some, that action was a slap in the face of the IVC community.)

     6:35 The meeting begins, Trustee Tim Jemal absent.

     Trustee Wright: No actions in closed session were taken
     Trustee Wright: invocation. "Dear heavenly father...." He prays about the big fires, etc.
     Trustee Lang: pledge "to our great nation"

Public comments:

     Cathleen Greiner: Cal State Treasurer John Chang will speak about the state's debt crisis (of 2008). Tomorrow at IVC's PAC.

     Hillary Nelson: CSNA (nurses)? A union rep, I guess. Advocating for a good contract, I guess. Notes the great reputation and efforts of faculty at the colleges. Please consider a good contract, etc. (Applause.)

     Paula Jacobs: senior faculty member. Started in Palm Springs school district, high school. Had to go on strike back then. Unfortunate. We hope to avoid a strike here. "Please, let's settle our contract." Applause.

     Autum Estrada: President of CSNA (Cal Student Nurses' Association[?]). Here to speak on behalf of faculty. Mentions (un)availability of office hours. Difficulty for part-time faculty. Best way to support student success is to support the faculty. We'd like to ask you for your support of faculty--support recent contract proposal. (Applause.)

Board Reports:

     Trustee Dave Lang: Welcomes Terri Whitt. (Applause.) Congrats. Thanks colleagues for selecting Whitt among "highly qualified candidates." He couldn't make that meeting. Talks about his trip to Africa or some such place. Broadened him. Still, it's always good to be home.

     Trustee Barbara Jay: she and her son took tour of IVC. What stood out: Veterans Office. Veterans so interesting. Attended orientation for students. Met student ambassador. Spoke to students, a wonderful time. Attended as much of professional development as possible. "Got fed a lot." It was wonderful. Two especially interesting sessions: student success, common assessment initiative. (Sounds scintillating.) Online Education Resources luncheon. You (employees) work so hard. Congrats to Terri.

     Trustee TJ Prendergast: congrats to Terri Whitt. Attended event on Friday. Rep. Mimi Walters at Irvine City Hall. She presented "what's going on" in Washington. Misconceptions about divisions between parties. Couldn't attend Flex Week. I wasn't on safari [like Lang]; I was in Cabo. Welcomed new staff.

     Trustee James Wright: congrats to Terri Whitt, a "wonderful person." We interviewed "8 highly qualified candidates." It was not an easy afternoon. At SC, "Welcome Back" breakfast and President's welcome. Chancellor's Opening had a great speaker, Dr. Paul Grossman. Wonderful job. Attended President's breakfast at IVC's PAC. Geek report at IVC. Flex Week was wonderful, attended 15 sessions.

     Trustee Marcia Milchiker: I first met Prof Whitt many years ago, when she was looking for support for health missions, disaster relief. (Applause for Whitt's efforts.) She's our own "Mother Teresa." (Laughter.) Did an Excel Spread Sheet. 27 events! Went to "Senior Summit," about brain research. "Grease" at SC. (Is it me or is Marcia talking faster and faster? It's a chatterbox blur.) High standards for students and faculty.... blah blah. I can't keep up. "Gardens all over Japan." Somebody's starting a blog. Congressman Walters' breakfast. Won't go into other 27 events. (Laughter.)

     Trustee Terri Whitt: thanks the trustees for their support. Don't have a lot to report but she can say how she feels: honored, eager, proud. (Applause.)

     Prendergast mentions that our students, having been born in 1998, "have never licked a postage stamp." Further, they've never heard of "Mother Teresa."

     Student Trustee: blah blah blah (or worse).


     Chancellor's [Gary Poertner's] Report. Budget report tonight. This will be fully discussed. Also, a brief comment about enrollment. Down districtwide by .2 percent. IVC is up by 2.2, SC down by .9. Nationwide trend. Thus our numbers shouldn't be alarming. The colleges are working hard on strategies to bring more students in. We'll see what happens. (Sheesh, Gary's just phoning it in.)

     President (of SC) Tod Burnett: the usual blah blah blah. Good news: enrollments are flat, which is better than recent prior years. Thanks faculty and staff for their "hard work." Parking was a lot better this fall. Police have new way of directing traffic. It's called the "Disneyland Plan." Thanks the cops. Prof Development week a big success. Thanks everybody. Annual "state of the college" was given. "A culture of excellence" was the theme.

     President (of IVC) Glenn Roquemore: introduces new Director of Student Life. Comes from South Seattle Commuity College. She stands up and beams. Next: new assistant dean of Financial Aid, Ken Leara (?). Sober sort, stands up. (Applause.) Please see our Solar Decathlon House, says Rocky. Students from UCI, Chapman, IVC working together. Lots of work getting done (for competition). Laser Week: students coming for the first time before classes begin. How to be a student, how to be successful. Our 9-11 event will be on 9-10. It will be "a very different event." I think that's supposed to be a good thing.

     Etc. Student government: blah blah blah.

     Consent Calendar: 3 items are pulled, 5.7, 5.10, 5.12.

     5.7 Wright: what's with A400 at IVC? Brandye DeLena: the "building envelope" had to be completely removed. Prendergast: what's a building envelope? She identifies what the phrase comprises: dry wall, plaster, just about everything but the framing. Wright: when can the building be used? Originally set to open in Spring. Now, likely the Fall. Item approved.
     5.10 What are "Commissioning Services"? DeLena: Has to do with HVAC (I think that's what she said). Approved.
     5.12 Wright: this concerns me. Recuses himself. A leadership conference. Prendergast mentions that he too is interested in attending. Approved. Wright abstains.

Action items:

     6.1 Adopted Budget for Fiscal Year 2015-2016
     Deb Fitzsimons comes up to present. She's got her usual team: C Hilton, Davit K, Kim McCord
     Mentions a replacement page.
     The slide show begins with Carol. Thesis: we follow the guidelines--of which there are eleven. 7.5% reserve for "economic uncertainties." Blah blah blah.
     Future long-term debt issue. Another principle used (something about needing a revenue stream for additional debt). Ways to stay out of debt. That's the ticket.
     Retirement incentives. No such incentives, unless funds available. Using "revenue based model" of funding. Thus colleges cannot spend more than they earn in revenue.
     Deficit financing: it should not occur, especially with regard to ongoing expenses. Retiree dental/vision. She said something about actuarial tables or something. Dunno.
     Basic aid. "The expenditure budgets for ongoing purposes shall be the resources that would have been available from state apportionment." That "principle" will be familiar to anyone who attends BOT meetings.
     One-time cost savings. If that occurs, spend on one-time expenditures.

     Next, Davit.
     Goes back to FTES funding. Blah, blah, blah. Discusses budget planning and 50% Law (i.e., at least 50% of expenditures should be on instruction) and faculty obligation number (how many full-timer instructors compared to adjuncts). District wide calculations.
     Numbers. General fund: $311.3 million
     unrestricted: $270 million
     restricted: $41 million
     Total all funds $711 million.

Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

(Demanded by SB 361?):
COLA is following 1.02%
Growth of 2%
Base allocation adjustment: 4.65%
Full-time faculty: 1.04%
     Next speaker: discusses "expense recap." Blah, blah, blah.
     Basic Aid:
Balance at July: $24.9 million
Receipts FY 15-16  - 44.7 million
Estimated property taxes: 9 million, yadda yadda yadda
     Next discusses "retirement system increases."  Lists of contributions. Combined Annual increase: over $10 million (that "we need to accomodate").

     Back to Fitz. "Looking ahead." "As costs increase and demands for programs and services increase, the new on-going income does not keep pace."
     STRS and PERS rate increases are large.
     The State Chancellor is warning us to be "cautious."
     Can't expect Prop 30 kind of money in future. Need to be "prudent and conservative."
     That's it. Questions?
     Trustee Wright makes small correction. He loves that shit.

7:31 p.m.

     Student trustee Momand: asked a question about the "Gateway Building." Still on tap? Fitz: Well, no dollars allocated. On list of future construction projects though.
     No further questions. Move to approve. Unanimous approval.

     6.2 Adopted student government budget (per college)
     Student Development Office person speaks, chirpily. Mentions that student government types who've come up before the board in recent years are "now in the White House," at Disneyland, etc. [Well, I made up the part about D.]

     Saddleback College student Prez (I guess). William somebody. Presented tentative budget a month ago. This is pretty close to last month's tentative budget. (I'm gonna tune out on this. I'll let you know if a riot breaks out.) .... This kid is a decent speaker. Not sure if any of his slides add up. Likely so. He finishes and asks, Any questions?
     Milchiker: excellent report. Agrees, she says, that students most at risk are those who come to the college and then leave for home immediately, not lingering on campus, getting involved. Student government kid wants to foster community feeling on campus, I guess. This kid notes that he's "engaged," yadda yadda. This kid is slick. I think he'll be the kind who ends up in some White House shredding some important papers.

     Next IVC.

     The new Director of Student Life (Johnson?) comes up to present. Discussion of fiscal transparency and such. Yadda yadda yadda.
     Student kid comes up, speaks woodenly. He hands off to still yet another wooden entity. Also less-than-polished. Charmingly so? We'll see. Everyone chirpily tolerates this kid's poor English, nodding.
     The next kid continues, again woodenly.
     Milchiker: again, excellent, she says. I noticed that revenues increased. How come? How so?
     These kids got nothing. Student Life gal pops up to explain. Yep. that's it. More bookstore revenue, that sort of thing.
     The trustees approve all this.

     6.3 Public Hearing for SC Tech and Applied Science "swing space"
     Fitzsimons again. An agreement with "San Diego Gas and Electric." Authorizing an easment. Fitz says she and Brandye are prepared to answer any questions. Prendergast solicits "public comments." Nada. Public hearing now closed, etc. Closed.

     6.4 Resolution to authorize this San Diego Gas and Electric thing. They vote: unanimous.

     6.5 BP revisions, etc. Accept for review and study.
     Fitz: BP4011.1 full time faculty hiring. [About a dozen years ago, the two Academic Senates successfully sued the district over its unilateral changes to this policy. Boy was Don pissed. He's still pissed.] BP4309, Duties and responsibilities of the faculty.
     All approved.

     6.6 Academic Personnel Actions. --Unanimous approval.

     6.7 Classified Personnel Actions --Unanimous approval.

     6.8 Initial proposal from SOCCCD Police Officers Association. --Unanimous.

7.0 Reports

     7.1 Pilot Program Hiring policy for classified staff .... Bugay explains.
     7.2 Basic Aid report. Lots of activity over last couple of years.
     7.3 Monthly Financial status report
     7.4 Quarterly financial status report
     7.5 Quarterly investment report
     7.6 FAcilities plan
     7.7 Retiree (OPEB) Trust Fund
     Fitz: in news, lots of stock market activity. Balance in July: $93 million. Today: $90 million. Slowdown in growth. China's economy slowing down. Likely the market will rebound in coming weeks. Good time to purchase stock. Prendergast asks if that's "insider trading info." Yuk yuk.

Reports of Admin and Governance Groups

I'm so outa here.


Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the report. Much appreciated.

Anonymous said...

Thank, you, Roy. People out there do read your posts. Thank you for keeping us informed.

Anonymous said...

We at Saddleback also appreciate your good record keeping of the BOT gatherings.

Anonymous said...

I LOVE the live blogging.

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