PRESENT: Kim Allen, Adrianne Andrews, Joseph Bialek, Nancy Brady, Terry Calloway, Janice Cole, Karen Hebert, Chris Carr Hill, Marti Hobbes, Karen LeHouiller, Merrilyn Lewis, Laura Matta, Pat Rist, Sam Rush, Bill Sheehan, Xinh Spangler, Mike Washut, Tara Zidonik
EXCUSED: Adrian Beulieu, Suzanne Beaumier, Gayle Fitzgerald, Kate Kilpatrick, Patty Kimura, Linda Laflam, Jinny Mason, Steve Monteiro, Linda Rainville.
GUESTS: Sandy Bycenski, Lou Ann Krawczynski, Mimi Lempart, Lou Bouley, Stacey Anasazi
I. MINUTES to Dec. 2 meeting were approved with minor changes.
II. STAFF VISIONS
February 4 is the deadline for submissions to Staff Visions art show and writing booklet.
Mimi Lempart asked SC reps to distribute registration forms to their constituents to promote interest in participating. She is concerned because only a few applications have been returned.
III. COMMITTEE REPORTS
Nominations & Elections
Review of the charter continued with a focus on Article V. Officers and Article VI. Committees:
Article V. Officers
Marti suggested adding to the Secretary’s duties publicizing the time and location of Staff Council’s monthly meetings, which are open to all staff. So it was agreed to alter the first sentence to read “The Secretary will assist in making public the reports, actions and meetings of Staff Council.”
Article VI. Staff Council Committees
Bill Sheehan recommended restricting membership in the Nominations & Elections committee to Staff Council representatives only. Accordingly, all agreed to change the final sentence in the Nominations & Elections section to read “this committee will consist of Staff Council members only, including the Vice Chair/Parliamentarian, and when possible, representatives from each of the staff groups.”
Nancy Brady suggested taking out the word “participating” in the first sentence of the Activities Committee bylaws. All agreed to this change.
Kim Allen recommended we change the status of the diversity committee from ad hoc to standing. All agreed. Chris Carr Hill asked Kim and Merrilyn to draft language proposing this for the next Staff Council meeting that we can vote on.
Bill Sheehan reminded everyone that the charter changes suggested today and at previous meetings will require a formal vote before they become official.
Status of 2005-06 Staff Council Elections:
Chris Carr Hill reported that at this point she’s aware of 12 representatives whose terms will be ending in May; and, except for three who will be finishing up two consecutive terms (Merrilyn Lewis, Mike Washut and Chris, herself), all can run for re-election.
Although an election timetable for the 2005-06 slate has not yet been established, Chris noted that LAST year, the nomination ballots went out in March, and elections took place in April.
Chris urged Staff Council members to “talk up” Staff Council among their departments to try to increase nominations this year. She said last year we didn't have enough nominations to even fill the ballot!
Activities (See more in Activities subcommittee minutes.)
The ISSA (Indigenous Students of Smith Association) Feast, which Staff Council helped coordinate and sponsor, was a big success with over 230 attendees. The food was great and the students were very pleased.
For the “Shrek II” screening, several Activities committee members heard that many staff still don’t know about the event, which is to take place Jan. 15.
The effectiveness of E-Digest in promoting Staff Council’s events on campus was then discussed. Mimi Lempart believed the decreased number of art submissions for the Staff Visions event is also a result of the switch from the dept. liaison distribution method to E-Digest.
Some of the suggestions for improving E-Digest e-mails included changing sender name from “paperless” to something more meaningful, like “campus news,” so the nature of the e-mail will be more apparent, and changing the subject area to something like “E-Digest announcements.”
Others suggested including more of the message and/or more of the substance of the item in the e-mailed version, so a determination can be made quickly about whether or not to click the link and read more of the notice on the Web page.
Communications (see more in Communications subcommittee minutes)
Planning for the spring community forum is on hold pending Merrilyn, Patty and Steve’s Jan. 24 meeting with President Christ regarding staff morale.
Stacey Anasazi has offered to replace Ferris Shelton as Staff Council co-editor, and she will serve with Xinh Spangler.
Personnel Policy (PPC)
Has not met since last Staff Council meeting.
Ad Hoc Diversity
IV. OLD BUSINESS
a. The Staff Council chair and Staff Council presidential appointees plan to meet with President Christ on Jan. 24 to discuss staff morale.
b. Steering Committee initiated a Staff Council-sponsored drive to collect personal hygiene products for tsunami victims in Sri Lanka.
V. NEW BUSINESS
On behalf of several library staff, Joseph Bialek asked Staff Council to look into the process the college uses for deciding a job classification. According to Bialek, after a recent search to fill a job opening in the library failed, a consultant was called in who recommended raising the grade of the position, which the college did. For Bialek and others in the library, the upgrade raised a concern about the college’s current classification system.
Sandy Bycenski of PPC asked Bialek to e-mail his question to Lianne Sullivan-Crowley and to copy her on it so she can have the Personnel Policy Committee follow up on it, if necessary.
Someone recalled that a review of the college’s classification system, which included a workload review, had been put on hold two years ago when the College undertook its budget cutback process. That person suggested that perhaps the college might revisit the topic.