University of Iowa
Capital, Senate Chamber
K. Abdel-Malek, J. Aikin, Z. Ballas, A. Bhattacharjee, D. Bills, T.
Boles, D. Brown, C. Colvin, J. Cowdery, J. Cox, D. DeJong, J. Desmond, C. Dungy,
L. Dusdieker, B. Fallon, R. Hamot, R. Hegeman, L. Hunsinger, R. Hurtig, E.
Irish, J. Jew, S. Kurtz, S. Larsen, P. Lloyd, C. Lynch, D. Mandersheid, T.
Mangum, K. Marra, A. McCarthy, J. Menninger, S. Moorhead, P. Muhly, B. Muller,
G. Parkin, J. Polumbaum, C. Porter, A. Qualls, M. Raymond, C. Ringen, J. Ringen,
P. Rubenstein, T. Schmidt, H. Seaba, R. Slayton, L. Snetselaar, C. Sponsler, W.
Stanford, S. Stromquist, K. Tachau, L. Troyer, R. Valentine, E. Wasserman, J.
Members Absent: J.
Altman. S. Armstrong, N. Bauman, J. Berg, C. Berman, R.Bork, M. Browning, P.
Chang, H. Cowen, K. Diffley, L. Geist, M. Klepser, R. LeBlond, J. P. Long, R.
Miller, J. Moyers, W. Nixon, I. Nygaard, S. Vincent, R. Weir, P. Weller
Members Excused: V.
Grassian, P. Heidger, Phil Kutzko, T. O’Dorisio
Tipsword (Safety and Security Committee), Pat Arkema (Staff Council), John
Keller (Graduate College), Chuck Green (Dept. of Public Safety), Jon Whitmore
(Provost Office), Jim Jacobson (Gazette),
Charles Drum (University Relations), Lee Anna Clark (Provost Office), Lola Lopes
(Provost Office), Chris Squier (Provost Office), Steve Hoch (Provost Office),
Vicki Hertz (Faculty Assemby), Heather Woodward (Press-Citizen),
Julie Thatcher (Faculty Senate Office)
Call to Order
Bhattacharjee called the meeting to order at 3:35.
Senate Minutes, April 24, 2001
minutes were accepted as amended.
Recommended Council/Senate Replacements
recommended replacements were accepted.
Recommended Committee Replacements
The recommended replacements were accepted.
III. Announcements and Reports
Bhattacharjee urged the Senators to attend this evening’s Convocation, the
annual event during which faculty awards are given out.
President Coleman will address the budget reduction and her vision,
providing a compass for how she will direct the university.
Governor Vilsack has recommended a cut of 46 million dollars, of which
almost 22 million is to come from the University of Iowa. President
Bhattacharjee warned that cut of this magnitude can change the face of the
University, but relayed that at present, all that has happened is that the
numbers have come in, and the central administration is looking for feedback.
Provost’s Annual Report to the Senate- Jon Whitmore
Whitmore began his address by admitting that the recent national tragedy and the
budget cut had tempered his optimism. Nonetheless,
he is deeply impressed by how the faculty has stepped forward to provide open
dialogue and a strong sense of community after the terrorists’ attacks in New
York City and Washington. He thanked the faculty for their response to these awful
events. He then reported that late
last week he learned of the 22 million dollar cut to the university’s budget.
The substantial tuition increase being considered by the Board of Regents
is a saving grace. As has been his practice,
he provided a “blue book” containing reports of the activities of the
past year and plans for the current year. This year he distributed a condensed blue book, plus the URL
for a web site where additional details can be found.
Whitmore continued that with the new budget information, we are forced decide
what we wish to preserve. Having
considered how to balance a complex university, he emphasized that we must
identify and protect the core, a topic that President Coleman will address at
Convocation. As he had
discussed this summer with Faculty Council, he sees the university’s core as
having three parts: the curriculum, the people—faculty, students, and
staff—and our shared values of learning, commitment to the community,
integrity and quality. Using the
analogy of a three-legged stool, which is apt to tip, he wants to add a fourth
part to the core to increase its stability: a blueprint for the future, the
Strategic Plan. That document sets
forth the university’s commitment to innovation, to augmenting strengths, to
building distinction, in areas such as library acquisition and interdisciplinary
Whitmore then spoke in more detail about interdisciplinary programs.
Interdisciplinary programs will remain an area of commitment.
The two committees the Provost appointed last year made excellent
recommendations, and some of those have been implemented already, such as the
appointment of a Special Assistant to the Provost for Interdisciplinary
Activities, Prof. Chris Squire. He
reported on Prof. Squire’s survey on interdisciplinary activities, which
included the finding that a large number of faculty already are so
participating, and 30% of faculty are interdisciplinary by nature of their
appointments. Interdisciplinary projects have garnered 25 million dollars
in external support. He announced
the creation of a new web page on interdisciplinary activities as his office’s
response to the faculty committee’s charge to provide an annual report.
Provost Whitmore concluded his remarks by renewing his support of the
partnerships among faculty, deans and colleges. He celebrates the progress of
the university and pledged to build upon the core and expand it as resources
Whitmore then took questions from the Senate.
Prof. Kurtz asked about the timeline for the budget cuts.
Provost Whitmore replied that since these are not across-the-board cuts,
the legislature must approve them, which won’t happen for some time. Also, the
central administration cannot come up with a plan in a few days to accommodate
the drastic budget cuts. Rather, it
will take a few weeks at least. Prof. Lynch then asked whether these cuts are enough to balance the
budget, worrying that there would be more down the line. Provost Whitmore agreed
that that was a possibility.
Hurtig commented that in the past, the university was able to get by, even when
there were cuts. Perhaps that gave
the message that there was room to cut more.
He suggested that this time there be a tangible consequence to the cuts,
or else in the future, the institution may exist only on nonstate funds.
He proposed the analogy of a Department of Streets and Roads that leaves
potholes unfilled when their funding is insufficient to operate.
If courses like freshman rhetoric were cut, it would be obvious that the
university lacks the funds it needs to function.
Prof. Tachau added that it is extremely important that the effects of the
cuts be visible, especially to those who will contact the legislature, such as
the parents of our students. She
also suggested that hidden subsidies to athletics be cut.
DeJong asked how much money would be generated by a tuition increase.
Provost Whitmore answered that roughly 1 million dollars is generated per
1% increase; i.e. a 15% tuition increase will give us 15 million dollars more.
Prof. Aikin noted that this 22 million dollars is cut from this year’s budget,
not next. She then asked whether
the university will be breaking contracts, to which Provost Whitmore replied
that they would not.
Report of the Funded Retirement and Insurance Committee Chair- Sheldon
Kurtz began his report with the well-known fact that health care costs are
rising, as much as 30% nationwide. With
that in mind, he had good news for the Faculty Senate regarding the price and
makeup of our health care coverage. FRIC can only make recommendations to the
President; in most years at the time of the FRIC report to the Senate, the
President already has a proposal. President
Coleman has not acted yet this year, which is completely understandable in light
of the recent events. He also
cautioned that FRIC can’t control the amount of the flexible benefits, but
would like to see them increase if our health care costs increase.
At present, there are two unknowns: whether the President will accept the
recommendations of FRIC and whether flexible benefits will increase.
Kurtz then gave some specifics about the increases his committee expects, which
he characterized as fairly low increases in both out of pocket expenses and
copayments. He noted that
whereas deductibles in Chip I, II, and III will all increase this year, it is
the first time in some years that they have increased at all, and predicted that
there will be small yearly increases from now on.
The increases on premiums have been kept small, and in four plans, there
is no increase at all. The cost of
UI Care plans will see very minor increases.
Finally, he emphasized that being in Chip I makes no economic sense at
early retirement, Prof. Kurtz reported that the Board of Regents will terminate
the current incentive program for early retirement this year.
Recently the regents have made the current plan a little more flexible
for those who would be eligible, having reached the age of 62, by this June.
Those wishing to take advantage of the early retirement program may now
exercise this option by retiring in June 2002, or one or two years after that.
This amended plan has not yet been approved on this campus.
FRIC will meet next Friday with President Coleman and will make that
recommendation then. By this
November the regents want a proposal for future early retirement programs. FRIC
is very busy working on such a proposal, which must be completed in October to
be put on the docket for the November regents meeting.
Westefeld asked whether, if Chip I is eliminated, it will be replaced by a
similar plan. Prof. Kurtz replied
that it may be. Prof. Tachau agreed
that we are splitting the pool of insured and suggested that we be given fewer
options. She emphasized the need
for a plan that covers University employees who are often working away from Iowa
City. She brought up the need for
parity in coverage for mental health. Prof.
Kurtz replied that they are working toward that; the problem is how to
incorporate it into existing plans, as a certain consequence is that costs will
go up. Prof. Tachau then expressed
her concern that Wellmark is decreasing the amount they will reimburse local
psychiatrists and psychologists who are not affiliated with UIHC. Prof. Kurtz answered that FRIC was aware of this movement and
had been talking about it, but hadn’t done much about it yet.
Their first concern was to get the right panel of providers.
Report of the University Safety and Security Committee- Chuck Green and
Bhattacharjee introduced this topic by reminding the Senators that we had
received a packet of information, including two specific proposals, on an issue
that the Faculty Senate Officers first became aware of about a month ago during
a meeting with President Coleman. The
main proposal is to arm the sworn officers of the Department of Public Safety (DPS)
with air tasers, which are stun gun devices. He reminded the Senate that for
three decades, the officers of DPS have not carried lethal weapons.
This policy was reaffirmed unanimously by the Senate a few years ago.
Now this proposal for tasers has been viewed favorably by the
administration and by the student government.
The vote on this issue in Faculty Council was very close, where the
proposal failed by a margin of a single vote.
of Public Safety Chuck Green then gave a brief presentation. He concentrated on
the question of what the expectations are of the sworn officers of the DPS.
Using the specific case of Memmers, a suspect for the recent double
murder in Coralville, he asked, if a fugitive sought for homicide is found on
campus, what do we expect of our DPS officers?
He stated that whenever an armed suspect was about, ICPD must be called
in. He addressed the opinion in a recent issue of the Press-Citizen,
in which he was challenged to demonstrate the need for the taser.
His officers provide law enforcement.
Without appropriate tools, he will change their charge to that of
security only. If they have no
weapons, from now on the only option will be to call in the ICPD.
his presentation, Green answered questions from the Senators.
Prof. Brown asked whether, if an officer draws this device, someone would
think it is a lethal weapon, and so maybe provoke more force from a gun? Green
replied that tasers are not effective against guns.
He reminded us that most of weapons they have encountered are
sharp-edged; however, so far it has been the uniform that evokes the response
from an assailant.
Hunsinger brought up the student protests on campuses across the nation during
the 1960’s. He then asked for
clarification: whether the DPS can be called on to deal with issues other than
dealing with unruly teenagers, and suggested that maybe we should be calling in
the ICPD in more serious situations. Green
stated that he is ready to build the best campus security force, but it won’t
be doing any more law enforcement without the appropriate tools.
Prof. Hunsinger continued that he was not sure he wants the DPS to be a
police force, and thought that this was an issue for the community to decide.
Green repeated that often the DPS does call in ICPD.
That was the case when they found Memmer, the double murder suspect in
the field house. On the other hand,
during an incident when a student was holding a knife to the throat of another
student, DPS responded, called ICPD, but they didn’t come as they were tied up
with other legitimate activities.
Kurtz asked whether there is a line where the jurisdiction of DPS ends and ICPD
starts. Green replied that they blend: ICPD
can come on campus to make arrests, and similarly DPS officers can go off campus
to make an arrest. Prof. Lynch
asked who is in control when ICPD is called in, to which Green replied that ICPD
is, especially when weapons are involved. Prof. Hurtig
then asked about jurisdictions where police don’t have weapons, do they have
stun guns? Green replied that, except
for those in England, he doesn’t know of any police departments without
firearms. Prof. Colvin asked
whether, if tasers are allowed, the agreement in which DPS blends with ICPD
would change. Green replied that it would not, adding that even now, when they
are called, ICPD prefers that DPS officers go first, to see if there are less
than lethal alternatives.
Mangum asked whether DPS officers can make arrests, to which Green answered that
they can, just like ICPD, since after all, they get the same training.
Prof. C. Ringen inquired about the availability of any statistics
regarding taser use that resulted in officers getting hurt, as a result
of having tasers. Green answered no, and added that a lot of times all one has
to do is point the taser to get compliance.
Simply marking the potential target with the taser’s red light spot has
a very strong psychological effect that makes a person wish to comply with the
officers. He added that tasers are
great for stopping possible suicides.
Porter requested more information about the statistics of lethality associated
with tasers. Green replied that there have been no reports of deaths caused directly
by a taser in the 30 years that it has been on the market. There have been some
reports of deaths, but most of these were associated with PCP ingestion, for
some unknown reason. Nonetheless there have not been numerous reports of death.
Prof. Westefeld then asked Green, since officers haven’t been armed for
so long, what has changed for him? He
answered that he has been trying to do this for seven years. Although he was
opposed to arming DPS officers before he took the job as Director of Public
Safety, by the end of his first year he was convinced that they need to be
armed. Prof. Sponsler followed by
asking whether the degree of violence has changed on campus, to which Green
replied that it webs and flows. What
has changed is his expectation of the DPS officers.
Incidents happen, and it is his position that officers need to be
prepared when there is an unexpected weapon.
Prof. Kurtz moved and Prof. Lynch seconded the following:
stun device, Air Taser brand, with the equipment assigned to all sworn Public
Prof. Hurtig asked whether this is an all or none
question. Will DPS officers carry a
taser all the time, or just in response to certain kinds of situations, in which
case it would require pulling them out of the trunk for specific situations.
Green responded that they had considered the latter, but rejected it, seeing the
problem that an officer doesn’t always know ahead of time whether and what
kind of weapons they will encounter. This would be especially problematic for small officers.
Aikin echoed Prof. Hunsinger’s comments about the 60’s, and cautioned us to
remember Kent State. While she was
not opposed to stun guns, she is very concerned that without stringent
guidelines, they could be used against protesting students. Prof. Hurtig agreed,
adding that he would feel more comfortable if the DPS could provide to the
senate a description of the circumstances under which tasers would be used.
Hurtig offered the following friendly amendment to add at the end of proposal 1:
will make available to the Faculty Senate for its review the guidelines given to
the officers describing under what circumstances the taser would be used.
amendment was accepted by Profs. Kurtz and Lynch.
Cox then spoke to the general point. He
stated that we are obviously divided, unfortunately so.
Similarly are the students and the staff divided on this issue, and the
community as well is divided. He continued that there is a special history in
this community. We have had an
unarmed campus for 35 years. Two years ago we were not divided, but voted unanimously to
remain unarmed. Since then, there
has been no outcry from students or faculty.
We have an experiment that has worked. What has changed is the
rhetorical force with which this issue is presented. The only objections to the lack of arms have come from DPS.
Prof. Cox urged us not to give this up lightly, adding that he thought
that this will not be the end of the discussion.
His advice to the administration is not to give up an experiment that has
Bhattacharjee then explained the table prepared by Prof. Irish, in which
incidents in the last six years involving a weapon were categorized by weapon
type and by severity of its involvement.
that opinions were strong, Prof. Cowdery called the question, seconded by Prof.
Jew. The motion failed.
discussion resumed with Prof. Brown offering three points.
First, he believes that Green is right, that if we insist on asking DPS
officers to be put in the line of danger, it is not fair that they do so without
a weapon. Second, Eric Shaw would
be alive if ICPD had tasers. Third, DPS will not move from tasers to guns unless
the faculty approves; this is not a case of a slippery slope.
Prof. Kurtz added that the 35-year tradition of an unarmed campus will
not be gone. He viewed the taser as
essentially long distance mace, not a lethal weapon.
Adopting the use of the taser will not turn us into an armed campus, but
will give our DPS officers what they deserve.
C. Ringen stated that she felt uneasy about the example that Green gave in
support of adopting the taser. In
this domestic dispute, in which weapons turned up unexpectedly, if an officer
armed with a taser had drawn it, might that not have provoked the assailant so
that officer would have been killed? Prof.
Tachau cautioned that we cannot put ourselves in the place of the DPS officers.
She noted that a lot of the incidents have been at the hospital, and
suggested that only DPS officers there have tasers.
Prof. Troyer weighed in with her concern about adopting tasers, noting
that things currently are working just fine.
She felt that Green’s arguments support his need for guns, not tasers. She also reported that she had done some independent checking
on the web, and found a significant number of reports in which the taser was
ranked low in effectiveness. She
felt that we should hear about alternatives.
Porter then commented on the “nonlethal” assessment of the taser.
He noted that there is a 4.8 % mortality for males, and maybe higher for
females. There is also an increased
rate of fatal loss. He did not want to suggest it is lethal, but felt it was
unfair to characterize as nonlethal. Prof. Mangum added that to vote for the
taser is to convert the DPS to a police force.
She wants DPS officers to feel safe.
She would like to have a security force, not a police force on campus.
Prof. Stromquist stated that we all appreciate the hard and dangerous
work the DPS does. He also
appreciates the DPS’s creativity in diffusing situations, in absence of
firearms. He reiterated his wish to
express appreciation; however, he did not think that the statistics show that
the campus has become more dangerous. He
felt that we should take pride in being a campus that has resisted the tide to
arm campus police.
Manderscheid countered Prof. Porter’s characterization of the taser as not
nonlethal, referring to the attached letter from Vice President Skorton, in
which he concludes that the taser is less dangerous than a nightstick.
Prof. Brown admitted that he has been wavering on this issue, and was not
convinced that this is urgent. He
thought that the community as a whole should readdress what kind of force we
want and whether campus police should have to deal with lethal situations.
Prof. Lynch replied that he will vote for adopting the taser because
Director Green refuses to put his officers in harm’s way.
Prof. Lynch added that he would rather have campus police deal with
campus situations. Prof. Wasserman
agreed, asserting that we need to do everything we can to support the DPS.
He continued that to fail to see any dangerous trends after the awful
events of two weeks ago is a most specious argument.
Prof. Desmond added that she was shocked at the number of weapons
encountered by the DPS, and that this number was convincing to her.
Qualls called the question, seconded by Prof. Cowdery. The motion carried.
(see above). The motion carried,
with 25 in favor and 18 opposed.
Hurtig moved and Prof. Tachau seconded the following:
president is to choose to implement this proposal, the President will review it
in one year to assess its effectiveness. The motion carried.
Prof. Porter asked whether the President will see numbers
of the vote. President
Bhattacharjee answered that she will.
Lynch moved and Prof. Dungy seconded the following:
the designation of all sworn personnel from Public Safety Officers to Police
Officers in the Department of Public Safety.
Change the division designation from patrol division to police division.
Tachau asked why changing the names is important. Green answered that currently
there is confusion about their status, which allows one to question their
authority. If the names are
changed, officers won’t have to prove anything.
Prof. Tachau pursued this point, asking whether the change would occur
this year, incurring the cost of changing the regalia in a terrible budget year.
Green pointed out that his officers are currently badgeless, as they are waiting
for this decision.
Bills moved to table the motion. The
Cowdery then called the question, which was seconded by Prof. Mandersheid. The
(see above). The motion carried.
From the floor
Bhattacharjee then requested any motions from the floor.
By consensus, the motion was for adjournment.
meeting adjourned at 5:24.