MSU-BOZEMAN PROFESSIONAL COUNCIL MEETING MINUTES December 19, 2001 PRESENT: Leslie Schmidt, Clyde Carroll, Jim Manning. ABSENT: Jim Mitchell, Becky Ward, Carina Beck. The meeting was called to order by Chair Elect Leslie Schmidt at 2:00 PM. The minutes of the November 14, 2001, Professional Council meeting were approved as distributed. Definition of professionals - Kathy Attebury, Interim Director, University Budget Office. - A handout comparing Professional FTE for FY98 - FY02 at MSU and UM was distributed. Contract professionals (on Board of Regents contracts) are included. There is also a category "classified professional" which includes union-exempt classified employees. - The number of contract professionals at MSU is significantly higher than at UM. MSU receives significantly more money in restricted funds (research grants) than UM, and this is where many of MSU's professionals are employed. - A comparison of "classified professional" employees at MSU and UM would be interesting. Would UM have more employees in this category? - During related discussion, it was agreed that to determine Professional Council membership, all employees in the category 61124, except those specifically excluded by the constitution will be represented by Professional Council. (Excluded by the constitution are employees on appointments less than .25FTE, executives responsible for the direction and management of the institution as a whole or of academic colleges and departments. Assistant and associate deans and assistants to a dean are included in Professional Council representation.) - A listserv which will be easier to maintain than the current Professional Council e-mail list will soon be ready for use, hopefully early in spring semester. Report from the Chair Elect - Leslie Schmidt. - Leslie attended University Governance Council on December 12. - Nominations for the Strategic Planning Committee are to be submitted to the Provost by several constituencies, including Faculty Council and Professional Council. - The 10-month AY faculty pay plan was discussed. During this discussion, the issue of receiving paychecks on the 11th of each month was again raised. - Vice Provost for Student Affairs Yarnell and Interim Athletic Director Lewis reported on efforts currently taking place to deal with the continuing deficit in Athletics. Nominations for the Strategic Planning Committee. - Four individuals have been nominated for the Strategic Planning Committee. It is requested that two names be forwarded to the Provost as nominees. After discussion, it was agreed the names of Mary Noll and Gretchen Rupp will be forwarded to the Provost as professional employee nominees. One individual will be appointed to the SPC. - The Chair Elect will forward the names to the Provost and contact the individuals nominated. Proposed University System Computer Use Policy - Executive Director and CIO Mark Sheehan. - It was decided during summer 2001 that the state of Montana needed policies to cover use of computers by state employees. They were prepared by the Department of Administration and approved. However, the state policies don't necessarily apply to the university system, where 90% of the users are students and where there is a need for guaranteed confidentiality, privacy and academic freedom. - Mark Sheehan and Ray Ford (UM) drafted policies for the Montana University System. It is not known if the state will accept these policies for the MUS, but because of issues particularly affecting universities, it is hoped they will be. - Initial drafts of the policies were distributed at the November Board of Regents meeting. By December 28, comments must be made about the policies to be included in the Submission Item draft on the January BOR agenda. There will again be opportunity to comment before the policies are included as an Action Item at the March BOR meeting. - People are encouraged to look at the policies and send comments regarding them to Mark. When the draft policies are accessed on the web (http://www.montana.edu/itpolicy/) a form for making comments is found at the end of each policy. The equivalent state policy is also listed with each draft university system policy. - Two policies to particularly note is Policy 002, which makes the university system responsible for instructing each employee (and student) about the policies and responsible for knowing the employees and students understand them; and Policy 003, which requires the display of a banner screen on every computer stating the user is aware of and consents to the state policies. - Because of the passage of SB 131, the Montana Information Technology Act, the state now feels more responsible for implementing policies and for providing oversight in information technology issues within the university system. Process of mediation for professionals. - There is agreement that there needs to be opportunity for mediation somewhere between the grassroots level and the grievance process. There currently is no satisfactory process for settling legitimate concerns informally. - After discussion, it was agreed Leslie will contact Ron Larsen, Chair of the Faculty Affairs Committee, to talk with him about the proposal for an ombudsman which will be presented to Faculty Council Spring Semester. Faculty have expressed interest in having professionals participate in an ombudsman process, if it can be established. - It was pointed out that an ombudsman does not have the final say on the outcome of a conflict, but the person can facilitate a solution. - If an ombudsman process is approved by Faculty Council and Professional Council, a proposal will have to be submitted to UPBAC before becoming part of a mediation process. As there was no further business, the meeting adjourned at 3:15 PM.