Minutes of HCSC Meeting: June 3, 2008

Members Present: Dawn Marullo, Jane Bachman, Alicia Fish, Colmin Gajadar, Shirley Georgia, Mike Haehnel, Carla Kinser, Tara Loewenguth, Dave Moxley, Matt Stever, Judy Walsh, Linda Wells

Members Absent: Barbara Konze, Kathleen Traynor Ex-Officio: Kim Noling, Kim Lindsley

Others: Richard Miller, George Elsbeck, Harry Matthews, Denise Wagner

Quorum Present

Call to Order
Dawn Marullo called the meeting to order at 9:02 a.m. and invited President Miller to address the Council.

President Miller
President Miller acknowledged this would be his last meeting with Staff Council, an entity he formalized from the Human Resource Advisory Committee. Starting next month Dr. Drugovich will as president depend on Staff Council for advice and may be more disciplined in communicating with Council and he expects she will look to Council for advice in the ways that he had originally hoped.

His retirement from Hartwick will not end his concern for the College and he shares the hopes of the Staff that the College will continue to grow and improve. When he came to Hartwick, much of the pressure impeding our success was internal whereas now outside forces, shrinking demographics, economic pressures, and government interest in overseeing what we charge and how effective we are in educating students, are the controlling factors.

He continued that although he was not able to reach all of his goals for “student success,” he feels President-Elect Drugovich will bring her strengths and experience to continue towards the goal. While he knows that some employees did not like his comments that Faculty are the most important employees, he feels good about how well Staff does its job. In his meetings with alumni during the farewell tour, he has emphasized their role going forward in strengthening the College. With a final thank you, the President left the meeting at 9:12.

Health Benefits for 2008-09
The Chair recognized Vice President Elsbeck to discuss health insurance for 2008-09. Mr. Elsbeck started by expressing his hope that this information next spring will be distributed earlier. MVP raised its premium 7.8% which the College could not absorb so the employee contribution had to rise. The employee and college contribution percentages are set at the Low Option Plan. Employees will contribute 4.0% more in 2008-09 than this year for the Low Option Plan and the College’s contribution for that plan will be 9.4% The College’s contribution for the other two plans is the same percentage as established in the Low Option Plan thus the employee contribution in those other plans will rise from 4.0 to 5.5% depending on the plan selected.

The College self funds the Dental Plan and the cost estimates projected for 2007-08 were quite a bit below actual costs. For non-compulsory employer provided dental plans, those employees who need dental care enroll in the plan at numbers far exceeding those who do not need the care and, therefore, plan costs are high. While Mr. Elsbeck did not release dental plan premiums for the New Year, he stated that they will be much higher and the College will offer only one plan instead of the two offered this year. The new plan will be 100/80/50 (diagnostic & preventative/basic care/major restorative) with some orthodonture coverage.

        Q.When will all rates be released?      A. Tomorrow, June 4th 
         Q.Are there any changes to coverage or co-pays for the health insurance?     A. No 
         Q. Will there be open meetings?     A. No, the HR Office will handle questions 
         Q. What happens when an employee or family member is in the middle of orthodonture care?  
                         A.  George will have to check and respond back

Mr. Elsbeck was thanked and he excused himself at 9:22.

Minutes May 6, 2008 meeting 
The minutes were accepted as submitted. Judy Walsh volunteered to take minutes for today’s meeting.

An email notice on May 29, 2008 informed Council that Jason Jameson has resigned for personal reasons. As a divisional representative, Institutional Advancement has appointed Alicia Fish to fill that position.

Treasurer’s Report
Mike Haehnel reported that Staff Council’s current balance is $406.39 and the Aramark invoice for the ice cream social has not been posted to the account yet.

New Business
Election of Officers for 2008-09 – Nominations & Elections Committee chair Matt Stever announced the slate of nominees:
                    Chair Michael Haehnel
                    Vice Chair Jane Bachman, Carla Kinser, Judith Walsh
                     Secretary Kathleen Traynor 
                     Treasurer David Moxley, Linda Wells

Ballots were distributed and the vote count was compiled by Matt who announced the election results: 
                     Chair Mike Haehnel
                     Vice Chair Judy Walsh
                     Secretary Kathleen Traynor
                     Treasurer Linda Wells
Dawn transferred presiding officer duties to new Chair Haehnel.

Staff Survey from Self Study – Mike Haehnel presented one copy to Council of a summarized Staff Survey administered by the Middle States Self Study “People” Working Group. The Staff indicated that they wanted a survey instrument that would preserve confidentiality. The Working Group summarized responses and masked any response that would identify the respondent. The Council copy will be placed in the Council’s designated file cabinet located in OAR.

Procedural Manual – Members wrote “how-to proceed” instructions for future reference on holding at-large and divisional elections; these are placed in the Council file cabinet.

Symposium for the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial – Harry Matthews informed the members that Hartwick will join in a national movement to honor Abraham Lincoln on his 200th birth year by offering workshops and research opportunities led by faculty. He invited any staff to participate. Any questions should be directed to Harry.

Old Business
Summer Retreat: Last year we did not have a July meeting but had a morning retreat in August; the time was spent on budget planning, goal setting, calendaring events, and committee assignments. The consensus was to have a retreat in early August and August 5, a Tuesday, was chosen. An alternate meeting room will be chosen because of Bresee renovations.

Self-Assessment: The 2007-08 Council achievements will be assessed by an ad hoc group comprised of Carla Kinser, Mike Haehnel, and Shirley Georgia.

Updates from Committees

Personnel-Has not met.
Professional Development – Dawn has the evaluation forms on “Protecting Your Identity” workshop. Kim Lindsley will replace Suzanne Janitz as the ex-officio member.
Nominating & Elections – Matt Stever reported that all elections for 2007-08 are complete.
Planning & Events – President Miller mentioned today that coffee hours are scheduled for June 13 and July 1 which surprised Shirley since these were not Council planned coffee hours. Shirley will contact Tammy Babcock for further information. The Committee had thought to have 3 coffee hours this summer: a June one in Golisano, a July one in Clark atrium, and a Barnes & Noble sponsored August one on Johnstone patio. Also, Shirley has not heard from Aramark regarding their sponsorship of a coffee hour this summer. The Pine Lake Day picnic is scheduled for August 21. Tara mentioned that it is a training day for Awakening staff. Shirley indicated that was the day Brian Hagenbuch suggested; Tara will follow-up with Lisa Kettunen to make sure the picnic which starts at 4:00 will not interrupt training and Tara will report back to Shirley. An email will be sent with descriptions of committees and sign-up instructions. The executive committee will collect the preferences and assign members to committees.

The next Staff Council meeting is Tuesday, August 5 at a time and place to be determined. The meeting was adjourned at 10:12 a.m.

Judith Walsh