University Senate Minutes
November 3, 2008
Meeting was called to order by President Lane at 3:33 p.m.
I. Approval of Tentative Agenda: approved.
II. Approval of minutes from October 6, 2008: approved with changes to President Kenny’s report.
III. President’s report (S. Kenny)
- Stony Brook achieved its highest ranking to date among universities worldwide according to “Top 200 World Universities”. Stony Brook came in at 127th.
- Dan Melucci discussed the budget situation. Services will be cut. Will do our best to preserve academic mission. Looking into revenue enhancements – new programs that bring in additional monies. Hard freeze on hiring on state funding and IDC. Renewals will not be affected by freeze.
- Governor Paterson will be holding a special legislative session on November 18th. Prior to this date, they are asked to submit budget strategies.
- There will likely be a tuition increase.
- Dr. Malcolm Bowman asked if we can put a task force of engineers, physicists, etc. to look into ways we can reduce the cost of energy.
- Possible four day workweek for employees.
- No news on Chancellor’s search.
IV. Provost’s Report (E. Kaler)
- In addition to the hiring freeze on state and IDC money in the provostial area, we have put a freeze on IFR hiring.
- Looking at slightly reducing size of undergraduate student body. We normally take in approximately 1,200 more students than we receive state support for and not taking in these students would be a revenue hit because they do pay tuition. But if we can replace those numbers and dollars with masters programs it would create some open space across campus. At the same time, it would provide educational opportunity at the master’s level that would be very welcome.
- Developing appropriate offerings for winter and summer activities.
- Provost’s Strategic Advisory group looking into educational efficiencies and strategic investments.
- Continuing to advise chairs on teaching.
- Dr. Joan Kuchner brought up involving governance on the Provost’s Strategic Advisory Group.
- It is time to look at faculty members use their time.
- Senator LaValle is trying to secure more Capital Funds.
V. 150th Plenary Session at SUNY Potsdam (G. Fouron)
- Discussed SUNY Provost’s Report. Provost Risa Palm was baffled by the silence of the faculty. It is important to be proactive and not reactive.
- Interim Chancellor John Clark made a presentation on the budget, scholarships, etc. In April 2009 there will be a two-day conference to address the history of SUNY on its 200th anniversary.
VI. Nomination of Candidates for University Senate Officers
- The Executive Committee received a petition to consider extending the nomination deadline for University Senate President so that Dr. Michael Schwartz could be nominated. The petition arrived late so it did not meet the criteria in the by-laws for submission. The petitioners asked the Executive committee to waive the by-laws. The Senate Executive Committee strongly supports the waiver. The Executive Committee has therefore accepted the petition from ten Senators at-large to open up the nomination period for one more month.
- First order of business at the February meeting will be to elect a President. Dr. Goodman: the reason to hold elections in February is for continuity.
- Dr. Norman Goodman: made a motion to re-open nominations for the position of University Senate President following the procedures we now have. The nomination requires ten signatures from current senators. They have the whole month of November to gather the signatures. At the December Senate meeting, those nominations are presented to the body which than gives the candidates a chance to make statements either in person or on the web. A vote will be held at the February 2009 meeting.
All in favor: 22 in favor; 3 opposed; no abstentions.
VII. Old Business: none.
VIII. New Business: none.
Meeting adjourned at 4:55
Submitted by: Laurie Theobalt, Secretary