Monday, March 28, 2016

The March meeting of the SOCCCD Board of Trustees: it's all about GALAs!

Be chirpy. Be not unchirpy
[Please see also Tere's Board Meeting Highlights.]

6:29 - The meeting begins.
Board actions during (prior) closed session: nothing to report 


No requests for public comments [Perfect]

Board reports -- or "GALA GALA GALA!":

     Trustee TJ Prendergast: attended OC School Board Association dinner; informative presentation on “what students are thinking.” He mentions a "state basketball game": “I’m starting to feel I’m bad luck,” he says. It's a meeting motif. (I gather that Prendergast's presence is bad luck for "our" team.)
     Trustee Barbara Jay: Thanks somebody in Saddleback Theater Arts. She thanks various others for their “excellent work.” Thank U, Thank U, Thank U. Attended Saddleback gala, which was “outstanding.” Thanks various people. [She initiates the board practice of referring to Saddleback College events as though they are the district's events. Accordingly, IVC doesn't exist.] She attended board of governors meeting, she says. Celebrating Excellence awards dinner is coming up. [Good Lord.]
     [In my mind: "Tell me this. How come you renewed Gary Poertner's contract? I mean, what does that man even do anymore? TRUSTEE: "shuddup, young man! The purpose of board meetings is to praise the college, its personnel, its students, and to issue endless prizes and awards. Donchoo know that?!"] 
     (I should mention that, according to Tere's Board Meeting Highlights, "Trustee Jay congratulated classified employees of the year Mark Peterson, Michelle Jackson, Betty McClelland, Dan Johnson and Steven Gross.")
     Trustee Terri Whitt: also attended the “gala.” A “wonderful night.” Attended Saddleback Foundation meeting. Wunnerful, wunnerful, wunnerful. Offered some… [I was distracted by wi-fi techical difficulties.]

     Trustee Marcia Milchiker: [Continued difficulties]…attended a presentation on “social” and “economic” situation in Cuba. It was just swell!
     Trustee Dave Lang: pleased to see articles in recent press about articuation with partners, e.g., UC. I want to acknowledge our college teams re -- [something, I didn't catch it]. Congrats to blah blah blah. We take great pride in our forensics and our sports teams. Blah, blu blah. (He thanks various parties for making this "one of the best community college districts in the state.")
     [In my mind: ME: "have you seen the district climate survey? It's pretty goddam negative. You blowin' that off or what?"
     TRUSTEE: "Shuddup! You're just the few and the disgruntled, that's who YOU are!"]
     Trustee James Wright: was interviewed by Kenny G of Laguna Woods TV. I represented the district, he said. Thanks Tere Fluegeman. Men's basketball team ... blah blah blah. (Talks sports for a while. I can hardly stand it. He next thanks "our young men" who participated [in something, something about sports, I think)..... "They exhibit grace, and make no excuses. Great guys." He also attended "the gala," and greatly appreciated that. [Wright actually mentions IVC for once!] Attended memorial service for an employee who passed away a week ago.
     Trustee Tim Jemal: thanked everyone for awards dinner. Wunnerful, wunnerful, wunnerful. Will attend something at IVC this weekend. Wanted to mention "the stadium." [Was he talkin' to me?] I'm personally very much in support of building a fancy schmancy stadium at SC. [Did someone suggest otherwise? Was it me?] But process is important. I implore the college and the district to work together on this. But fiscal issues are important as well. We need to do this in a way that makes sense. "We need to do it the right way, you all know that."
     Student Trustee Momand: blah blah blah (if that)
     Chancellor's report (Gary Poertner): student success scorecard of state chancellor's office has a "new aspect." There's been information that's been missing on these scorecards. Not all students come to us with a goal of having one of those outcomes such as gettin' a certificate or a degree. They're called the "skills builders" group: getting skills to get a promotion, that sort of thing. Not a certificate, not transfer. We'll get the report in June. We'll get a presentation in July. [Hot fun.] This new aspect is a big step forward in making the scorecard more meaningful (said Gary). [Gosh, I thought he wanted to retire years ago. But he's recently accepted a new three-year contract! What gives? How can this board be satisfied with the administrative status quo, tell me that!?]

     SC College President Tod Burnett: blathers about the SC foundation. Blah blah blah about Rickner, doners, et al. We did better than last year, extremely successful gala. GALA, GALA, GALA. Parking sucks though.
     IVC College President Glenn Roquemore: Trustee Jay mentioned what's coming up. This year we'll be at the Marconi Auto Museum for our gala (?). Remember slot cars? They have a slot car track! I nearly peed my pants when I first heard tell of  it. It's an awards event (natch). Please come, you'll enjoy it. We'll be issuin' prizes, praising everybody under the sun! That's all we do! [In my mind: "but we always make a point of ignoring actual scholarly or academic achievement!"]
     ASG, Saddleback College: farewell to somebody. Gala was an "amazing event." GALA, GALA, GALA. Had a great time, enjoyed meeting "all these people." Survey on campus food services. What do students think of the cafeteria. The two ASGs have a great relationship. We'll have a match with those IVC bozos (volleyball?) soon. They don't have a prayer. LGBQRST [I forget the exact letters] event. Free food!
     ASG, IVC: Jonathan Ford: I'm representing student government at IVC, standin' in for somebody. "Awareness Day" was a success. Informing students what student government does. Did survey. Students want better wi-fi, better places for chillin'. Budget and finance committee is having hearings. Students are very interested in how things are funded. Diversity committee has hosted great events. Etc.

Board requests for reports. None.

No discussion item this evening.

Consent calendar. Any pulls? 5.2. (Wright) They move the balance. Unanimous vote, yes.

5.2 - IVC curriculum revisions. An error in the reports, typos, but there were replacement pages. IVC Senate Prez Schmeidler: can get you those pages. Somebody was "mortified" that errors were made, but we have the corrected pages available. No biggie.  Motion to approve. Prendergast: we can't vote on something we can't see. Voted to table. Ramifications of postponing for a month? Schmeidler: there will be a "fair amount" of paperwork if we table this. Craig: ramifications are "quite minimal." Table: vote. Unanimous.

General action items:

6.1 - Emergency operations plan. In event of major emergency, we would be eligible for reimbursement for money spent. But you have to be in compliance with certain standards. (He mentions the various standards.) This plan will make us eligible for reimbursement, under those standards. Motion to approve. Lang: Why are only two cities mentioned, Mission Viejo and Irvine? What about all the other cities of the district? Also, "insuring continuity of government." No consultation with the BOT? Seems like an ommission IMO. Bramucci answers: This thing doesn't mean to leave any city out. Cities shouldn't feel hurt. Blah blah blah. Whitt: item says, we will review this plan on an anual basis. What do you mean? Blah blah blah. --They vote on motion. Unanimous.

6.2 - CCCT board of directors, election 2016. Lang nominates Prendergast. Prendergast appreciates that, but would rather we nominate five people, including P. [He's Captain Humility.] Apparently, he did not campaign for this thang. But has received support. Wants to put forward various names, just not his own. Mentions several people from a list. (Four, I think.) Plus Prendergast, so that's five names. Wright concurs with those names. Marcia: yes, I've marked the same names. Golly, great minds think alike. They put forth five names as nominees. Unanimous.

6.3 - Barranca entrance project at IVC, etc. Brandye comes up to explain. A typical request, she says. Wright: Balfour Beatty Construction - have we used them before? B: no. But we've asked about them, checked 'em out. Wright: a pretty large contract, so we'd better be careful. Were they the low bid? B: no. Motion by Prendergast. Seconded. Prendergast: BB built Beckmann High, and "it's still standing." Har har. Vote: unanimous.

6.4 - SC Sciences Project change order. Increase of $655,000. Lang: there's information here about who requested the change. Is that the new status quo? Brandye: we've added categories for clarification. Lang: we've allocated some basic aid to cover the project. Is the project still winthin that amout? B: Yes. Lang: if the college wanted to make lots of changes to the contract, increasing the amount, would the money come out of the budget, not basic aid? B: Yes, that's what happens. Passes unanimously.

6.5 - SC Techno and Applied Sciences project. Motion, unanimously approved.

6.6 - Cloud software. Not to exceed $500,000. Motion, unanimous approval.

6.7 - Hewlett Packard contract. Fitz explains. Jemal: why do we have to go through state of Minnesota contract? Brandye: we are piggy-backing on their contract. We won't follow contract blindly, we'll compare with other services. State of Cal approves. Minnesota was the originator of the agreement. Joining this saves us money. Motion. Unanimous approval.

6.8 - Authorizatin to join the Cal public entity pension stabilization trust. This concerns foreseen great rate increases (discussed at last meeting). Fitz explains. Recommendation to join. Blah blah blah. Jemal: motion. Yes. Prendergast: a joint trust with other schools? Fitz: 15 other community college districts bringing this item to their boards. All over the state. Vote: unanimous "yep."

6.9 - Board policy revisions - various, for review and study (not approval). Wright: couldn't find the "student fees" policy. Fitz: it's not in my packet either. Wright: thank you. Blah blah blah bli blu blah. They amend the motion. [I noticed that Bugay now sports a beard! Wow.] Bugay yammers about policy about hiring relatives. Jemal: do other districts do what we do? Bugay: I doubt if other districts are as careful as we are (I think that's what he was sayin'). We are careful and diligent. We legally can't keep relatives from applying. The problem concerns employees being managers of relatives. Discussion of hiring/search committees, disclosure forms, etc. Poertner discusses past trustees and their "special concerns" (he used some such phrase) about nepotism. [Har har] This has produced unusual practices that never went away. Unanimous approval of this darned thing.

6.10 - More board policy revisions (for approval). Fitz: blah blah blah. Prendergast: discusses discrepancy about lowering maximum dollar amount. Lang: I was concerned about not rubber stamping contracts. Lots of gamesmanship played with multiple contracts and that "concerns me already." I preferred the lower limit ($100,000 rather than $150,000). Jemal: me too. Motion approval. Unanimous.

6.11 - Authorization of payment to absent trustee. (They approved, as always. Wright abstains--no doubt because he is the trustee gettin' the bennie.)

6.12 - Academic Personnel Actions. Wright: mentions that, in one case, employee's degrees are "all in civil engineering." He concerned, it seems. Schmeidler gets defensive, annoyed: I wasn't on the hiring committee, she says, but the process is such that only those qualified are invited for interview. (I.e., "who do you think you are, dude? We didn't just fall off a turnip wagon!")  (There's some tension between Schmeidler and Wright. Schmeidler isn't happy with Wright's concern. She would be loathe to override discipline experts, she says. Wright is concerned that candidate has had "advanced courses in math." [Micromanagement? Wright has that tendency. He seems often to think that others are screwing up and he can enter the picture, making things right. Obnoxious, that.]  We have policies and processes that give to discipline experts the say.) Bugay enters the fray. Wright repeats: "just bringing up a concern, that's all." [Emily Litella?] Prendergast adds his two cents: she's qualified, dude. Chill. Vote: unanimous.

What happens when Republicans are put in charge of colleges?
Shit happens.

6.13 - Classified personnel actions.  Motion, unanimous approval.

6.14 - Full-time faculty hiring amendment, IVC. Bugay explains, blah blah blah. Motion, unanimous approval.

6.15 - Same for Saddleback College. Motion to approve. Unanimous.


7.1 - Speakers. No discussion
7.2 - Basic aid report. No changes, says Fitz.
7.3 - Monthly financial status....
7.4 -
7.5 -

7.6 - Facilities plan status report (current construction projects). Lang: a few questions. Brandye appears again. Blah blah blah (not that there's anything wrong with that). Lang: match of funds, 17.5 millions, stadium project? Fitz: getting proposals back, they're due on the 19th. When we have more info, we'll bring back report on stadium project. Jemal: we'll get an update in future? Yep. Lang: chat briefly about the "gateway project." Brandye: We've allocated very little basic aid to that. Not a good chance of state money. Lang: help me understand. Brandye [good hair]: two year window for this project. Been in this status since 2007. We keep waiting for state funding. (I didn't understand what she said next. He body language implied that she was setting everybody straight, dang it, but whadoo I know. Lang is still mystified. Something about points scheme.) Brandye: decisions made by state are "very objective." They count up these points, you see. Talks about how points are allocated. Blah blah blah. She sounds pretty damned compelling, given that I have no idea what she's talking about. Did I mention that her hair is nice? She's still talking. Must be pretty good, everybody looks kinda satisfied. Brandye's smile prevails, as it generally does. (It's prodigious.)  Lang still has that nasty bone in his mouth. He won't let it go. Something about "current enrollments." Blah blah blobbedy blah. "OK," says Lang. (Not sure why.) Wright: something about item 4. All deficiencies for that project addressed? Nope. Something about equipment shut-off. Improving the exhaust of a machine. Gosh, that Brandye gets down there with the nuts and bolts, I guess. We're working diligently. That's it, I guess. Whew!

Reports from governance groups:

     OK, that's it for me. I can stand no more.


Anonymous said...

Thank you, Roy.

Roy Bauer said...

You're quite welcome

Anonymous said...

Good to hear Trustee Jemal's concern over price increases of buildings then later on gets slammed with another increase.

Thanks to Trustee Wright for mentioning Mark Peterson recently named IVC's employee of the year. Trustees Jay and Whitt only mentioned Saddleback and District's E.of the Y.
Again, feeling like we do not count.
Could someone please inform our leaders that they represent both schools.
The District's employees of the year were named for their work in the disaster affectionately known as Workday. LOL you are kidding right?

Anonymous said...

I would like to really know how much we spend on the foundations vs. how much they raise. Can we get this data? Does anyone know? Care?

Anonymous said...

I found information about the foundations on the IVC and Saddleback websites.

Saddleback's has lots of information, including financial reports, IVC has very little and some buttons don't work-they say "check back with us soon" which is very interesting as they have not been working for many months.

The lack of transparency is intentional (not a conspiracy theory)as the IVC foundation continues to take one step forward (last year's Gala) and two steps back.

As a faculty member, I cannot understand how we don't have an Alumni group or at least an outreach to our campus and local community.

Anonymous said...

We used to participate in PROIVC, but I don't think they had it this year. At least I don't remember seeing any information about the program. I guess we are no longer Promoting IVC. There is no information on the website either.

Anonymous said...

Our organization always participated in Pro IVC but nothing was done this year to promote the program. It seems like there is little or no communication about what is going on. I understood that the golf tourney was also poorly attended. After Morley left it seemed like it turned around with the Foudation Dinner last year and a big turnout from the campus. After that nothing...

Anonymous said...

Didn't the IVC foundation combine with Saddleback?

Anonymous said...

I don't think Oransky is doing a good job. She does not say hi to anyone when walking around the campus.
How much are we spending on her salary? Probably didnt match it. And don't count the Bookstore, ASIVC, Osher funds. Probably has not raised a dollar. Each year the foundations are to give a report to the BOT.
The reason people showed up for last year's dinner was to support Dennis.

Anonymous said...

I also think that last year there was a concerted effort to bring the campus together as a community after many difficult years with Morley. Dennis and others on the committee put together a first-class event like we hadn't seen in a long time. Most importantly, they made sure that everyone felt welcome and invited to a fun evening.

Anonymous said...

Are you going to the Gala Roy?

Roy Bauer said...


Anonymous said...

I want to give money to the foundation but frankly do not know what happens to it afterward. I don't trust that it will be spent well.

Anonymous said...

So true 9:21, if you look at other colleges, money is spent on the Arts, Athletics, Music, Theater, Sciences, etc. to support students and the institution. Other than managing some scholarships (the majority of which is not being funded by the efforts of the foundation)I am not sure what they are doing. According to the IVC website, there are 2 Directors and two support staff 4 people!...that's about $500,000 in salary and benefits. I'll bet the staff costs a hell of a lot more that the meager amount they raise.

Anonymous said...

I raise my own funds for my organization for scholarships and some program support. How much is the Foundation department raising and where does that money go?

Anonymous said...

With the headline about "GALAs" I figured for sure you were going and would give us a factual report on at the IVC Gala. We'll miss your unbiased appraisal and humorous observations about the event and those in attendance.

Anonymous said...

I expect a better return on 500k than 25,000.
This is Irvine. Where are the business connections?

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Dennis should have gotten the job.

Anonymous said...

I bet Dennis and before him, Morley, brought in much more than $25,000. Now they pay very high administratve sallaries to two directors that can only raise $25,000? Something is seriously wrong...

Anonymous said...

Dennis didn't get the job because he was honest and spoke about realistic goals and outcomes. You know our leadership is completely delusional and doesn't want to hear real info. All is well......

Morley LOST more money than he ever pulled in!! The numbers he and GR always posted were subsidized by GR and HIS foundation account. It's all smoke and mirrors and they think we are to stupid to see the truth.