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March 18, 2014

Present:  Chair Zonderman, Secretary Daley, Senators   Aday, Ade, Allaire, Aspnes, Bernhard, Borden, Bourham, Heitmann,  Holden, Knopp, Krause, Laffitte, J. Moore, Rucker, Sztajn, Tyler, Williams

Excused:  Immediate Past Chair Kellner; Provost Arden; Parliamentarian Weiner

Senators Fleisher, Funkhouser, Lunardi, M. Moore, Morgado, Nfah-Abbenyi, Penrose, Spontak

Absent:   Senators Bartlett, Baumer, Bird, Bradley, Devetsikiotis, Edwards, Fuentes, Knowles, Marks

Guests:  Fred Cubbage, Professor, Forestry and Environmental Resources

1. Call to Order
Chair Zonderman called the twelfth meeting of the sixtieth session of the NC State Faculty Senate to order at 3 p.m.  There was no quorum.

2. Remarks and Announcements
Chair Zonderman announced that a message will be sent to the faculty that the polls are open for the elections.   He encouraged colleagues to vote so that their voices will be heard on who they would like to represent them.

There will be a reception tomorrow from 3-5 p.m. in the new governance chamber in the Talley Student Center. 

Chair Zonderman updated the faculty on the University Council meeting.  He reported that more than 140 issues were raised.  He also gave details on some of those issues.  

Chair Zonderman stated that they discussed going to a three term (trimester) academic calendar including a summer term rather than summer school.  He explained that there is a lot of discussion of how to develop a common allocation method for enrollment related academic funds.  The question of faculty workload and overload and supplemental pay was discussed.  There is a lot of continuing discussion on how to get the graduate student support plan on a sustainable basis year to year.  Discussion of increasing the number of programs that might get differential premium tuition, the increasing number of Community College transfers, the ongoing program review process, making McKimmon Center and its continuing education programs entirely self- supporting, whether to outsource any functions of the university, what to do about off campus facilities, how to budget for the agricultural resource stations and field labs, and whether to change the policy on vacant lines were all discussed.  There was also a discussion about ways to consolidate IT support.

At the University Council, the Provost went into details on several of the items including the graduate student support plan.  He said that there are disincentives for faculty to include doctoral funding in certain kinds of grants and they are trying to figure out ways to remove the disincentives.  They are looking at ways to try to get more money into first year funding of graduate students with the hope that then they will be picked up for further support on faculty research grants. 

Another item that is being looked at is bridge funding and also a possibility of some dissertation completion funding.    This is a big issue and there are lots of different financial moving pieces.

Chair Zonderman stated that there was much discussion on premium tuition.  Right now a hand-full of programs mainly in Engineering and the Master of Management Programs do charge premium tuition  as do  a number of our peer institutions.  Certain undergraduate programs especially in Engineering charge premium tuition, so there is a potential for that. 

Chair Zonderman stated that he reiterated to the Provost  his strong belief that before any of these take the form of a formal proposal they should be brought to the Senate for further discussion and that any kind of draft idea should go to the relevant committee for committee review.

Questions and Comments 

Senator Williams wanted to know if there were discussions about the library.   He noted that the library is still stuck on the public funding side whereas a lot of the research side is privatized and that side grows. There seems to be a disconnect between the academic side, the library which is an essential part of that side and how the library is funded relative to how that research side was funded.  So he wonders how the required growth in library resources is going to be funded to accommodate the growth in academics.

Senator Ade asked, is there an overhead charge against the grants that reduce the library cost?

Chair Zonderman stated that a percentage of F&A does go to the library, but it never covers enough.   He added that the library was not mentioned in the University Council discussions. 

Senator Ade commented that NC State continues to do a poor job in space allocation, so was this part of the discussions in the University Council meeting.

Chair Zonderman stated that as far as he knows that discussion takes place in the Space Committee and there is not a lot of faculty input into that committee. 

Senator Knopp:  Do you think we could push for more transparency in exactly how overhead money is allocated?

Vice Chancellor Lomax said that she will address the question during her presentation.

Chair Zonderman announced that the next Senate meeting will be on Centennial Campus in MRC 246, Monteith Research Center.

3. Approval of the Minutes, Meeting No. 11, February 18, 2014.
The approval of the minutes was postponed until the next meeting. 

4. Presentation
Terri Lomax, Vice Chancellor, Research, Innovation & Economic Development

Vice Chancellor Lomax explained that 30% of the F&A dollars are directed to the college for it to disperse and 15% comes as a strategic research fund that she manages. 

Vice Chancellor Lomax reported that two years ago the total F&A that came back to the university was around $34.5 million.  She stated that they charged 51% as their full overhead, but with so many different grants and activities that aren’t full, the amount they receive is more like 20 percent.  

Vice Chancellor Lomax stated that during FY12 they had $34.5M to allocate, which is a guess because they allocate what they think is going to come in during that year.  The first thing the university does is take out the contingency reserve of 1% and that is for any audits that could happen.   They also had to start pulling out an additional 1.5% for the GSSP.  She said they still continue to grow the graduate population, so they have to pull in funds from the Provost reserves and other places. 

Vice Chancellor Lomax stated that they chart the 30% that goes directly to the colleges.  Every year  they  ask the  Associate Deans in the colleges to explain how they spent it.  Some places like CHASS give most of it back to the faculty.  Other places like Engineering, CALS, and College of Sciences have to retain more centrally in the college because they have to put so much into startups and other big pieces of equipment.  She said it seems like the colleges are doing different things but when you look at it there is actually a good reason for that.  Within a single college, departments do different things with the share they get back, but they cover all service agreements and other things so that the faculty doesn’t have to do that. 

Vice Chancellor Lomax stated that they have to be able to prove to the Federal Government the dollars that they spend on research at the university that is above and beyond the money that they get for education, outreach, and all the other activities and then the overhead rate gets calculated out of that.

Lomax reported that the building is what they use to supplement those rents on Centennial Campus.  Some faculty complain that the rent is too high when they are only paying one third of the total rent, also helping pay out some mortgages.  The library gets 2.2%, OIT gets 6%, so in the past the library would have been smaller and now it is more IT. 

Questions and Comments

Senator Aspnes stated that if our rate is 51.5%, but your average rate is 20%, it indicates that a lot of people are getting a free ride.  How does this happen?  Why isn’t it the same across the entire grant spectrum?

Vice Chancellor Lomax responded that some federal agencies took it upon themselves to say they are not going to pay what the rest of the federal government does.  Foundations and commodities say that too. 

A senator commented:  When you made the comment about the restriction on administrative cost that you included, I have read quite a few articles talking about how the universities are going down the drain in administrative expenditures without much of any clear light of day discussions of what has caused all of those administrative costs.

Vice Chancellor Lomax stated that the society that does the lobbying for that is COGR (Council on Government Relations) and they are the ones doing battle in DC to try to hold down government regulations.

Since the cost benefit ratio for research output is very different because in some cases you cannot recover the overhead and in other cases you have very different regulatory cost associated with that, is that entering into the strategic investment decisions?

Vice Chancellor Lomax stated that she has to think a little bit like a business person and go for those things that are going to bring in the full F&A and help support the university that way.

We have seen how much F&A provides for the library, what percentage of the library budget does that represent?

Vice Chancellor Lomax stated that they have been growing research at a price and they have been growing their F&A over the years, so that has been a growing part of library’s budget when the other part has been going down. 

Vice Chancellor Lomax stated that her office manages Federal Relations, Research Development and all of the centers and institutes.  They also manage the proposal development unit that helps faculty with proposal and it has been wildly successful.  She stated that they have 3 proposal developers and 2 admin people to help with all the other.

How much is your office involved with Kannapolis?

Vice Chancellor Lomax stated that they have very little involvement with Kannapolis. 

Senator Aspnes questioned the rent on Centennial Campus.  He stated that the  Colleges of Engineering and Sciences get hit particularly hard, because all of Partners buildings and all of the research buildings pay rent, and yet if you review Vice Chancellor Leffler’s memo from 2010 all of the money goes back to developing Centennial Campus.  So it seems that we are taking money out of pots that should be used for education and turning it over to other university pots that should be funded elsewhere. 

Vice Chancellor Lomax stated that they are not taking money from education.  The funding is coming out of grants.  There are four different types of buildings on Centennial Campus.  There are State-appropriated buildings like the College of Engineering and the Library.  There are buildings where we were the developer, so we took out private bonds and did like we would do a dorm, which are separately financed and we are the landlord.  Then there are developer-built buildings, where developers do a ground lease from NC State and build the building and charge rent.  The only thing we get is the ground lease out of it.  Finally there are the donated buildings like the State Club and ‘The Point.’

Senator Ade stated that he has heard a lot about money and faculty.  That is important, and he considers those as input to do research.  How much do you focus on output? 

Vice Chancellor Lomax stated that those things are difficult to compare.  She stated that she tries to get the resources for all faculty to be as successful as possible.  She thinks it is the responsibility of the colleges and the departments to make sure that the quality and the output is high.  She said it is not something that can be controlled by her office.  

Do all of these discoveries show up as citations?  There are differential kinds of research that is funded by grants and some of it doesn’t get out there and is going to be cited.

Vice Chancellor Lomax stated that it gets out in different ways and one of the things that she likes about NC State is how applied it is, so it might come out as a product or it may come out as something that is going to improve life for people that may not have as high of an index as some other things. 

5. Old/New Business
Non-Substantive Revision” to General Faculty Bylaws – Deferred

Resolution to Reject Academic Boycotts – Deferred

Resolution on Notification for Falsified Results

The resolution was presented for a first reading.

Senator Aspnes, Co-chair of the Personnel Policy Committee, explained that the resolution is to stiffen Section 6.6.2 of Regulation 10.00.02, which has to do with research misconduct.  This is focused specifically on what happens when due process has been followed.   The resolution is to require a way to inform editors of journals, that they have published falsified results.

Senator Aspnes stated that scientific integrity requires the scientist to do that, but that doesn’t always happen, so this deals with exceptions that are rare.   The committee felt that there should be a resolution that, if this happens and the responsible scientist does not admit that falsified results have been published, then the editor should be informed.

The resolution will be presented for a second reading and discussion at the next meeting.

Resolution on Credit Cards for Principal Investigators

The resolution was presented for a first reading.

Senator Aspnes explained that this resolution was intended to expedite research and get around the delays in processing orders, but in putting the resolution together he discovered something called P-Cards, so we now have a two level situation regarding purchasing that doesn’t give all principal investigators an equal playing field.  The point of credit cards is not only to expedite the purchasing process but also to give everyone the same approach to being able to spend money on grants. 

Vice Chancellor Lomax stated that she was told that everyone who has a grant account is eligible for a purchase card. 

The resolution will be presented for a second reading and discussion at the next meeting.

Chair Zonderman announced that the next meeting will be on Centennial Campus in the Monteith Research Center, Room 246.

6. Issues  of Concern
Resolution on the Hofmann Forest

Senator Heitmann presented the resolution for a first reading. 

The resolution will be discussed in the Executive Committee meeting and will be presented for a second reading and discussion in the next meeting. 

7.  Adjourn
A motion passed to adjourn the meeting at 4:47 p.m.

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