Cabinet Highlights: July 8, 2008

Master Plan Update
D. Hook briefed the Cabinet of the master plan progress. A lot of time is being spent on the transit spine and land use. Workshops are being held to give people an opportunity to provide feedback. The project team includes university staff, consultants, and representatives from the city, the community college, and NAIPTA.

There was discussion of the proposed traffic spine. The president indicated that very soon he would need to be able to talk about the cost of not only the spine but the buses as well. K. Appleby noted that during peak times we need to provide more service than is currently provided. R. St. Laurent noted that we also should take a look at the class schedule. The president urged the groups to continue to think about alternatives.

The final plan is expected by October.

IRIS Project Presentation 
J. Campbell distributed some information about the new communication software. The focus in August is to move staff e-mail off the jan server. The system is being beta tested currently by IT staff.

January is the target for migrating to the new calendar.

Capital Projects/SPEED Update 
The president noted that the SPEED project did pass the legislature at a lesser level of funding — $530 million. The university’s portion of that amount is unknown at this time. The original medical school package was not cut. The Board will hold a special meeting to determine the allocation of the funds. The idea behind this stimulus package is to invest in construction projects.

FY09 Budget Update 
The president noted that the university now has a budget. However, the cuts required were appropriated to the Board. P. Haeuser explained the good news which is that the amount given back for FY 08 was not taken as a base cut. So for FY09, the budget starts with the FY08 base. Another piece of good news is our enrollment growth was funded. This amounted to $6 million. However, we still don’t know about health insurance premiums and it’s also possible that the university will receive some additional “technical” cuts. The president cautions that although this is a good budget, the university did experience the enrollment growth and be prepared to serve those students. It will be in the university’s best interest to be prepared for possible mid-year cuts.

P. Haeuser distributed a draft budget scenario. However, because the actual final budget is still not known, many decisions remain on hold. She asked those with budget responsibilities to hold back two percent for the time being. The president anticipates having firmer numbers in August.

College of Medicine Progress Discussion
The president reported that there are many meetings taking place. R. Bowen is representing the university at these meetings along with D. Harris.

Potential Capital Campaign 
M. Gerety distributed and discussed an outline of a process to determine the university’s readiness for a possible comprehensive capital campaign.

The president distributed the recommendations from the Governor’s P-20 Council higher education ad hoc committee. There will be money in the budget to tighten partnerships with community colleges.

D. Bousquet reported that the new residence hall is filled and there is a waiting list for residence hall space.