The University of
FACULTY COUNCIL MINUTES 2001-2001
October 9, 2001
IMU, Penn State
Joyce Berg, Lois Geist, Rebecca Hegeman, Richard LeBlond, Chuck
Lynch, David Manderscheid, Kim Marra, Ann Marie McCarthy, John Moyer, Paul Muhly,
Gene Parkin, Craig Porter, Margaret Raymond, Hazel Seaba, Lisa Troyer, John
Howard Cowan, Vicki Grassian
Officers in Attendance: Amitava Bhattacharjee, President; Jeff Cox, Vice
President; Erin Irish, Secretary; Carolyn Colvin, Past President
Lee Anna Clark (Office of the Provost), Jon Whitmore (Provost), Mark
Schantz (General Counsel), John Menninger (Biological Sciences), Steve Collins
(Electrical Engineering), Edward Wasserman (Psychology), Robert Wiley (Professor
Emeritus), Robert Engel (Emeritus Faculty Council), Jan Waterhouse (Office of
Affirmative Action), Charles Drum (University Relations), Sean Thompson (Daily
Iowan), Heather Woodward (Press-Citizen),
Steve Hoch (Office of the Provost), Julie Thatcher (Faculty Senate Office),
Kristin Clark (Faculty Senate Office)
Call to Order
The meeting was called to order at 3:40.
Prof. Lynch moved and Prof. Moyer seconded the following:
To approve the agenda. The
Minutes- Faculty Council, September 11, 2001
Prof. LeBlond moved and Prof. Westefeld seconded the
To approve the minutes. The
Report of the Faculty Senate President (Amitava Bhattacharjee)
President Bhattacharjee began his report by providing some
news regarding the 21.9 million-dollar deappropriation.
In the last couple of weeks the central administration has consulted with
the senate budget committee and has established the broad, qualitative
principles that will be used in addressing the budget reductions.
These principles have been circulated today.
The principles include protecting the ability of the University to
attract and retain students, such as the maintenance of financial aid and
continued commitment to the four-year graduation plan.
The principles also include protection of our abilities to attract
external funding. President
Bhattacharjee continued that he has received a number of e-mails asking what the
Faculty Senate can do in response to these cuts.
He explained that we are working with the central administration, and
suggested that we each follow President Coleman’s lead in speaking out on
behalf of the University. He then
announced his decision to call a special meeting of the Faculty Senate for next
Tuesday, urging everyone to attend or, if one cannot, to send a substitute.
Prof. Lynch asked Provost Whitmore whether the 21.9 million
could be just the beginning of a series of cuts. Provost Whitmore replied that there could be another 20
million cut from next year’s budget, which amounts to three cuts, totaling
about 60 million dollars, in two years. He
added that at least there is a tuition increase, but unfortunately those
revenues won’t start to be available until August 2002.
Prof. Lynch asked whether to expect another reversion of funds this year.
Provost Whitmore agreed that state revenues are down, but suggested that it is
likely that we have taken all of the cut that the governor can give us already.
Prof. Cox followed up by pointing out that this is not an
across-the-board cut; rather, we have been singled out.
This is a political decision to target the university (and the prisons). Prof. Seaba asked how the cuts to the university budget
compared to those of other state-funded enterprises.
Provost Whitmore replied that some of that information might be on the
Governor’s web site, but probably would not allow an easy comparison of cut
percentages. General Counsel
Schantz added that last year our base budget was cut but it was not a
deappropriation. He also pointed
out that the governor cannot do the deappropriation on his own.
Prof. Porter added that whereas the governor is not explicitly targeting
child welfare agencies at present, he has singled out for a 7% cut the only
comprehensive developmental disabilities program in the state of Iowa, the
university hospital’s schools, which will have substantial effects on the
welfare of children.
Status of Reviews of Central Administration:
President Bhattacharjee turned to his reports on the status
of various reviews, beginning by reminding the Council that two years ago
Faculty Senate President Carlson set up the schedule for reviews, as specified
by the Operations Manual. That schedule had to be revised and updated, as
discussed in the attached memo. The
following reviews are now in progress:
Office of the President. The self-studies of the Office and of the President herself
have been completed. Provost
Whitmore and President Bhattacharjee are in the process of selecting the members
of the review committee. This
review will start this year, probably very soon.
Office of the Provost. This
review is nearing completion, and should be completed by the end of the fall
Office of the Vice President for Finance and University Services.
This review is done. A
report of the review of the Office has been published on the web.
Office of the Vice President for University Relations.
This review is complete.
Office of the Vice President for Student Services.
This review has been delayed but will by done by the end of the semester.
Office of the Vice President for Research.
This review will start next semester.
Office of the General Counsel: Although this office is bracketed
with the other vice presidents’ offices, the Operations Manual does not
specify that it be reviewed as the others are. Nonetheless, a review will occur in the near future.
Ad hoc Committee for Rules on Collegiate and Decanal
An ad hoc committee will be appointed by President
Bhattacharjee to establish these rules. The
committee will start their work this fall and will report their proposed rules
in the spring. Steve Collins, College of Engineering, will chair the committee.
Approval of the agenda for the
special meeting of the Faculty Senate.
Prof. Porter moved and Prof. Colvin seconded the following:
To approve the agenda. The
Discussion of modification (C. Complaint, 1, a) to Unacceptable
Performance of Duty Warranting Termination policy
President Bhattacharjee introduced this discussion by
announcing that we must make some minor, but important, changes to the policy
that was approved by the Senate last April. Prof. Colvin explained that after
the Senate approved the policy, Associate Provost Clark and Prof. S. Kurtz went
over it with a fine-toothed comb, and found an item that needed to be brought
back to the Senate. Prof. Cox added
that this deals with small departments, with small DCG’s.
The change amounts to an expansion of language to make it conform to the
policy for promotion and tenure.
Prof. Westefeld moved and Prof. Moyer seconded the
To accept the suggested modification.
The motion carried.
Discussion of modification to Clinical Track policy
President Bhattacharjee explained that the modification
makes specific how the percentages should be computed.
Associate Provost Clark had suggested computing it in terms of FTE’s.
Prof. Lynch clarified that this does not mean counting faculty, but
Prof. Lynch moved and Prof. Raymond seconded the following:
To accept the suggested modification.
The motion carried.
Policies on Sexual Harassment and Consensual Relations (Lee Anna Clark)
President Bhattacharjee introduced this topic by explaining that in the past, both sexual harassment and consensual relations had been handled in one section of the Operations Manual. The changes have been made to reflect the fact that these two are distinct, and should be handled in distinct manners. The new policies were crafted by a substantial committee, which included several lawyers as well as faculty and staff members. He explained that we do not have to vote on these new policies today.
Prof. LeBlond questioned an aspect of informal complaints
that specified that the respondent is not to be notified (p.3, section 3e.,
Policy on Sexual Harassment), pointing out that that would prevent intervention.
Associate Provost Clark explained that they tried to strike a delicate
balance between protecting the rights of the complainant and the respondent.
As written, the new policy should give the complainant a sense of
security, such that if (s)he wants the matter to remain confidential, action
could still be taken. Prof. LeBlond
countered that you don’t have to violate the confidence of the complainant
when alerting the respondent that there are concerns. Associate Provost Clark asserted that there is sufficient
flexibility in the new policy. General
Counsel Schantz added that this policy is moving in the direction Prof. LeBlond
wants. The old policy was entirely
complainant driven. With the new
policy, the University takes action independent of further involvement by the
complainant. Prof. LeBlond
expressed concern about whether one might be liable, having heard an informal
complaint, if one didn’t go talk to the respondent immediately upon hearing
the complaint. Associate Provost
Clark pointed out that the Office of Affirmative Action would have new powers to
serve as a central repository of information, including the names of the
respondents, which is a change. This
gives them more to go on. President
Bhattacharjee followed up on this question, clarifying that a supervisor who
hears an informal complaint can speak to the respondent informally.
Prof. LeBlond reiterated his concerns, wanting clarity about liability of
a supervisor either for giving a name or for not doing so.
Prof. Marra expressed her concern about third party
complaints, asking what the argument was for taking them now.
General Counsel Schantz responded by clarifying the meaning of
confidential: you may tell your supervisors, but not the outside world.
Other members of your unit may be notified, on a need-to-know basis. He reminded us that the courts are now holding us responsible
if we have knowledge. If a
complainant goes to the university ombudsperson, the university has no
knowledge, but if a complainant goes to his/her supervisor, then legally the
university has knowledge. He
admitted that anonymity itself is not perfect protection, as a respondent can
often deduce who made the complaint. He
added that at least in the past ten or even 20 years people can be effectively
protected from retaliation.
Prof. Raymond made a couple of interrelated points.
She expressed her appreciation that the two issues had been separated
into two distinct policies. She was concerned about students coming to figures who play
multiple roles, such as counseling and administrative.
How will a student know that, depending on who (s)he goes to, a report
may have to be filed? She also noted that the policy specifies that any officer of
the university who learns of such behavior must make a report.
Her concern was that if any of the faculty hear a complaint, or a rumor,
but make the judgment not to report it, that faculty member could be at risk of
penalty from the university. The
difficulty is in evaluating allegations. A
second point regarding confidentiality: as
written, a complainant is held to a different standard of confidentiality than
are officers of the university. General
Counsel Schantz replied to the first point, interpreting “officer of the
university” as someone in an administrative position, such as a dean or DEO.
Prof. Manderscheid asked about cases when a person serves as both an
administrator and a faculty member. General
Counsel Schantz replied that one solution would be to ask the student what
capacity (s)he comes to you as having. He
emphasized that the university has a responsibility to report.
Prof. Raymond continued that she was still concerned about cases in which
the university is sued, and it learns that you had information that you had not
divulged, emphasizing the need for a standard for a reportable allegation.
Prof. Colvin inquired about informal complaints, asking
whether the response need be written or oral.
Waterhouse replied that in most cases the response is oral: most
people prefer to come in, tell their side of the story, but written responses
are acceptable as well. In formal
complaints, the chain of events is different.
Prof. Colvin followed up by raising the question of how an informal
complaint becomes a formal complaint.
Prof. Westefeld asked Associate Provost Clark where this
policy is, with regard to being adopted, to which she replied that the policies
have gone to the deans, and should be in place by the end of the semester.
Prof. Porter addressed the policy on consensual relations, suggesting
that the examples listed in section 4 are too limiting, and feared that someone
failing to find a close enough match to his/her situation may wrongly fail to
conclude that the policy is applicable. Prof.
Westefeld suggested adding language to the effect that these are only
illustrative cases, whereas Prof. Porter suggested omitting the examples.
Associate Provost Clark answered that this point had been debated, and
the conclusion was that they helped. Prof.
LeBlond suggested that there be examples of when informal vs. formal complaints
Prof. Cox returned to the issue of who to go to with
respect to confidentiality, stating that the ombudsman and university counseling
center have confidentiality. He
felt that with the new policy, protection of the complainant is sacrificed for
the sake of pursuing the respondent. He
also pointed out that these policies involve the opening of a new kind of file,
in which allegations from second-hand sources can accumulate.
It may be very difficult to defend oneself retroactively.
A file will be there, maybe indefinitely.
He added that he was in favor of the policies, but was just looking for
possible consequences of implementing them.
President Bhattacharjee made the point that if there is a pattern of
abuse, yet no one is willing to go forward, under the new policies action can
nonetheless be taken.
Prof. Raymond turned the discussion to consider the policy
if one’s children are in one’s class. General
Counsel Schantz suggested that the nepotism policy covers that, and added that
one must make a disclosure. Prof.
Moyer inquired about the First Amendment rights alluded to in the Sexual
Harassment Policy. General Counsel Schantz replied that threats are not
protected speech, but a joke or a question might be. He added that a new part, number 7, addresses display of
sexual material. If a monitor in a
computer center shows sexually explicit material from some web site, for
example, this gets right up to the First Amendment, especially if no one is
forced to stay in the room. President
Bhattacharjee inquired how many of the changes to the old policy reflect changes
in Iowa Code, to which General Counsel Schantz replied that most are.
President Bhattacharjee wound up the discussion by suggesting that those
who have raised an issue e-mail that concern to Associate Provost Clark and/or
General Counsel Schantz, with a cc. to President Bhattacharjee, as part of an
ongoing iteration. If all of the
issues are raised in that way, we may be able to act on the new policies at the
next Faculty Council meeting.
Review of Vice-President Douglas True (in Executive Session) (Amitava
Prof. Colvin moved and Prof. McCarthy seconded the
To move into Executive Session. The
President Bhattacharjee introduced the invited guests, who
were either Past Presidents of Faculty Senate, in office during the time when
this review was in process (Edward Wasserman and Robert Wiley) or members of the
review committee (John Menninger and Steve Collins).
Prof. Cox moved and Prof. Westefeld seconded the following:
To allow the guests to participate in this executive session.
The motion carried.
President Bhattacharjee announced that the reviews have
been delivered to President Coleman and to the President of the Faculty Senate,
and that President Coleman has met with Vice President True to discuss the
review. He then went on to convey
the essence of the report, which stated that Vice President True is well liked
and respected, receiving substantial and universally positive comments.
Numerous rumors that one who did not come from a traditional academic
track could not be expected fully to support teaching and scholarship were
thoroughly investigated and contradicted. Less
positive evaluations of his office concerned the links between Vice President
True and the office he supervises. An example was the choice and implementation
of PeopleSoft. Some staff and
graduate students experienced distress when the payroll/benefits aspect of this
package were implemented. Some Human Resources personnel resented having to
compensate for what they perceived as a failure of management with extra work
during the early stages of the implementation of this software.
Criticism was also made of the infrequency with which the Finance and
University Services office’s staff is
evaluated. In summary, the report
was laudatory to Vice President True, but identified some areas for improvement
in his Office.
President Bhattacharjee then reported that he had received
a letter from President Coleman, in which she carried out the required
affirmation of the officer under review to remain in office.
Further discussion reiterated the concern that Vice
President True plays a very central role in running the university, perhaps
overshadowing the roles played by those who should be controlling academic
decisions. Also discussed was the
enormity of his responsibility, his wise choice to delegate responsibilities,
but shortfalls in supervising the delegation. Both Finance and Facilities
Services are by themselves huge jobs, and his office has taken on additional
responsibilities since the decision was made not to replace Ann Rhodes.
Suggestions were made to reorganize the administration, transferring Facilities
Services from this office but adding more interactions with the foundation, the
latter seeming a more natural alignment. It was also pointed out that Vice
President True does an excellent job dealing with issues confronted by
legislators and regents. Concerns
were voiced about reports of excess charges from internal contractors.
A final point regarded the extent to which his office oversees operations
at the hospital, which seems pretty independent.
At the conclusion of the discussion, President
Bhattacharjee explained that this report to the Faculty Council was the last
step in the process of the review. In
one year, the review committee will reconvene to monitor and examine whether the
recommendations made have been implemented.
Prof. Colvin moved and Prof. Cox seconded the following:
The Faculty Council thanks the review committee for their efforts. The
The meeting was adjourned at 5:40.