MSU-Bozeman Classified Employees Personnel Advisory Committee Minutes

March 11, 1998


Mr. Rob Specter was a guest at our meeting. He was there to answer questions and concerns that CEPAC members have. I have summarized as follows:

Mr. Specter stated he was sorry he had been out of touch with the CEPAC committee and would make a commitment to stay more in touch.

He informed the committee that the Operators have a contract. Carpenters have not settled. There will be more meetings set up. The big issue is wages.

John Batson stated that as a whole the classified people have a problem with the equality of the raises. The classified staff makes less money and gets a smaller percentage raise compared to faculty/professional. Some classified staff have a bad attitude about their jobs. They feel they are degraded and devalued. When the Commissioner of Higher Edu visited CEPAC he stated we had money...Where is the money?? John also stated that budget cutting always starts with the lower classified people.

Sharon Townsend stated that we have conferences almost constantly and we make money on those conferences. Custodians keep the building clean and presentable for the conferences. She has said that there are priority problems. The plumbing in Johnstone is falling apart yet we don't fix it. Students are concerned about grounds to enjoy and the library. Mr. Specter stated that the State is responsible for funding the library. MSU will be requesting money for the library funding and it will have top priority. Sharon said that a lot of work needs to be done on Johnstone and it has to have paid for itself.

The question was raised about inspectors. We do employ inspectors on campus. Mr. Specter told the committee that the dorm use is down to around 80%. They hope to use that as an opportunity to fix some of the dorms that are in need. Would like to see the use up to around 92%. Mr. Specter asked Sharon and Nancy what the procedure is for asking for something to be fixed in a dorm. Nancy stated that there is a procedure called R&R; (repair and replace) for custodians. Supervisor then decides what needs to be done. The students wishes are always done over the custodians. Sharon and Nancy said there are also problems with the quality of cleaning items. The university must go with the low bid but much of the time they get what they paid for.

Mr. Specter asked if Sharon and Nancy saw a difference in the students over the years. Nancy said the students are about the same. She said that if the building is being taken care of the students tend to help keep it up. If the building is not being kept up the students tend to continue trashing it.

There were comments made about the market value system (used for raises) as degrading for classified employees who have been here a number of years. Moral is very low.

There was then a lengthy conversation on building projects. There are donations made for certain projects. Other projects are "partnerships" with the Montana University System, the state, and other companies. Mr. Specter talked about the stadium remodeling and the "Green Building". He doesn't think that this will be a $75 million project. We will build with the money we raise.

The new Banner system was mentioned next. The system we are using now will not go into the year 2000. The university will have to go back to the legislature for more money. The project could mean an increase in tuition for students. The administration is very concerned about the students opinion on this project and will be asking for their assistance. The system will be paid for with a short term debt. The system has a life of 10 years.

Karen Maika gave a presentation on the meeting she attended in Billings concerning consolidation of the university system. The presentation was very organized and thought out but I missed much of what she was saying and have requested a copy of her notes that I will put on e-mail to all CEPAC members.

This was a very interesting meeting and hard to summarize. Mr. Specter said to feel free to contact him with any concerns you may have...

The next meeting will be April 8 at 9:00am - 10:am in 104 Reid Hall. This meeting is VERY important....we will be meeting with the President's Ex. Committee.

Meeting adjourned..................

Dawn Watkins