February 16, 2000

PRESENT:  Hatfield, Sherwood, McDermott, Burgess, Kommers, Peed, Neff,
          Leech, Benham, Howard, Paul for Duncan, Larsen, Mooney,
          Weaver, Amend, Locke, Levy, Bogar, Bond, Jelinski, Francis,
          McKinsey, Lynch, Fisher, Prawdzienski, Butterfield, Scott.

ABSENT:   Ag Econ, O'Neill, Anderson, Jost, Harkin, Nehrir, Lansverk,
          Griffith, Carlstrom.

The meeting was called to order at 4:10 PM by Chair John Amend.  It
was determined a quorum was present.  The minutes of the February 2,
2000, meeting were approved as distributed.

Chair's report - John Amend.
     - President Terry Roark was introduced.  There will be
     opportunity to ask him questions later in the meeting and to
     visit with him informally after the meeting.
     - VP for Administration and Finance Tom Stump attended UGC
     Steering Committee February 10.
          - There was good general discussion about budget issues.
          - The point was made that during the past years, faculty
          salaries have either been frozen or raises delayed to
          balance budgets.  Although the university's financial
          problems are recognized by the faculty, some strategic
          planning needs to be done so agreed-upon salary increases
          are not used for balancing the budget.
     - President Roark has asked that a VP attend Faculty Council
     meetings this spring to provide rapid communication between
     faculty and PEC.  John and Ron agreed to this at this morning's
     meeting with the President.
     - Vice Provost David Todd will attend Steering Committee tomorrow
     to discuss Banner and other IT issues.
     - It has been decided by the administration that the Office of
     International Programs will not charge departments for preparing
     materials for hiring foreign teaching, research, and support
     - The Strategic Planning and Budget Committee will meet with PEC
     and Deans' Council on Friday, February 25, at 10:00 a.m. in SUB
     275.  The location has been changed to allow more people to
     - The Hewlett Committee, which is working on a new or alternative
     core curriculum, would like a Faculty Council representative to
     attend their meetings to provide communication with Faculty
     Council.  Please contact George Tuthill, Chair of the UGC
     Nominating Committee to volunteer.
     - Dorothy Bradley, Water Center Director, would like to attend
     Faculty Council for 15-20 minutes this spring to talk about
     statement government/university interaction.  She is a candidate
     for Lieutenant Governor.  Steering Committee will discuss it
     - Notification of faculty sabbatical awards have been delayed
     until mid-March, after there's been opportunity to discuss the FY
     2001 budget.

Report from the President Search Committee - Ron Larsen.
     - Deputy Commissioner of Higher Education Joyce Scott and
     Academic Search and Consultation Services representative Allan
     Ostar met with the search committee Saturday to discuss
     - Concern was expressed for interviewing candidates during the
     - Although the committee seems large, Dr. Scott put a lot of
     thought into keeping the group as small as possible and at the
     same time giving representation to many constituencies on campus
     and around the state.

Faculty Affairs Committee report - Jack Jelinski.
     - Through an NSF grant, Jeff Adams and Tim Slater are working on
     guidelines for in-depth assessment of teaching.  There'll be more
     information about it later.

Proposed Faculty Handbook Change - will be on next week's agenda.

Discussion with President Terry Roark.
     - Dr. Roark summarized his background and how he came to be at
     - He stated he will not be a candidate for the permanent position
     of President, but in the meantime, he will not be just a
     caretaker.  However, he does not plan to change the course of the
     university, either, because MSU is moving in a good direction.
     - The main issue now is balancing the FY 2001 budget.  There are
     over $2 million in expenditures that are not covered in the
     coming fiscal year.
          - The President will try to open up the decision-making
          process to all constituencies.
          - He will work with the established governance groups.
          - The institution needs to move forward in a positive way.
     - In addition, Dr. Roark stated the most important people on
     campus are the students.  Faculty are here for the students, and
     administration and support staff help the faculty do their work.
     - The President will look at all other areas for budget
     reductions before asking employees to defer raises.
     - Some of the reasons for budget deficits are:
          - USDA pull-out of the new Ag/Bioscience Building.  (An
          additional $180,000 in operations and maintenance are
          - Athletics deficit.  (Bond debt may be restructured).
          - Anticipated employee raises.
          - Faculty sabbaticals ($230,000).
     - During discussion, it was pointed out by faculty that there
     currently is a freeze on filling tenure-track positions.  (See
     clarification in February 23 Faculty Council minutes.)  The
     current understanding is that they will not be reopened until
     after some budget decisions are made, and then not automatically.
     This can make it difficult to hire faculty for the coming year.
     - Concern was expressed by faculty that there has been rapid
     turn-over in the Provost's position.  The President stated that
     MSU's administrative salaries are low, and although good
     candidates for positions can be recruited, other states find
     Montana a good place for recruiting administrators because of our
     low pay.
     - There seemed to be agreement that it would be helpful for
     college deans to provide more opportunities for interaction with
     faculty in the respective colleges.

As there was no further business, the meeting adjourned at 4:50 PM for
informal conversation with the President.

Joann Amend, Secretary