Cabinet Highlights: March 27, 2012

NAU tuition proposal faces regent vote

The Arizona Board of Regents will vote on NAU’s tuition proposal next week. More than 90 percent of current NAU students will see no increase because of the university’s Pledge program. President John Haeger said Gov. Jan Brewer has announced the appointment of two new regents who are awaiting Senate approval.

Christy Farley, vice president for Government Affairs and Business Partnerships, said the governor and Legislature are still negotiating over the state’s budget. Haeger warned that a “double whammy” could occur if the university’s budget proposal is not passed and the state’s budget contains no increase for higher education.

A few parking changes will occur over the summer, announced David Bousquet, senior vice president for Enrollment Management and Student Affairs. Lot 43 near SBS and the Franke College of Business will be reconfigured to remove 59 spots to increase pedestrian safety and ease bus access. Handicapped parking will remain, and landscaping and sidewalks will be improved. Drivers will be able to park behind SBS where the old bus barn will be razed. Three lots in central campus—P9, P12 and P19—will be removed for an east-west pedestrian path, but the closures should occur shortly before the opening of the parking garage.

The university will be hiring several high-profile positions soon, President Haeger said. The new athletics director will be on board first, pending regents’ approval. Afterward a new men’s basketball coach will be hired. Candidates for the dean of the College of Education are meeting various campus constituents, and Michael Stevenson, dean of the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, is stepping down to accept a provost position in Maine, and a search for that position will begin in the coming months.

Service professionals will be seeing six-month contracts again this year and it is expected they should start arriving in May.