President's Report to the Staff Council
March 21, 2017 - Danelle Callan, Staff Council President
March 2017 meeting
Good Afternoon Councilors,
It has been an interesting month but we are still in a holding pattern for several of the budget decisions for our institution.
Arron shared my thoughts about the budget and its impacts on staff at the last regents meeting. We were met with questions from the regents about how this impacts staff and that they didn’t realize this might impact jobs.
o We were also questioned again about how we came up with staff morale as an issue. I shared with Regent Clifford via email the staff engagement survey provided by HR to executive committee a few weeks ago. I also pointed out direct staff comments in the survey that mirrored comments I hear every day.
o An invitation has been extended to the Regents to attend a staff council meeting but have not received any response.
The BLT will be meeting this Thursday to vote on the budget recommendation for the acting President to present to the regents in April. We are still hoping for a differential tuition increase to help offset the UNM deficit of 11.7 million. We are still waiting on final numbers from the state that came out of the legislative session but as of yet the Governor has not signed the budget (There is a 1% cut for UNM).
o For more information check the government and relations website they also have a bill tracker document that you can look up specific bills.
Aaron and I met with the acting Provost this week and discussed:
o UNM’s budget and staffs concerns about positions and the impact staffing cuts or salary reductions might have on the services we provide to students and the impact on quality of life.
o Presidential search updates since he is on the committee. It looks like the committee is reviewing and ranking all the applications but no other updates as of yet.
o Looking at non-traditional students and what UNM can do to increase enrollment in this area.
o Recommendations for how to communicate with staff about the next town hall on March 28th from 12:20-1:30
Final event updates were sent out via the president’s weekly email and staff council sent out additional communications including: submit questions in advance to firstname.lastname@example.org so I can prepare for all topics of interest. For best consideration, please submit your questions by Friday, March 24. The event will be live-streamed, and will be archived on the president’s web site.
Topics we asked to be included in the town hall is the overall budget process so staff know how the budget is made and approved as well as what has been going on behind the scenes and addressing the ICE concerns from students, patients, faculty and staff on what UNM’s stance is on providing information similar to the email that went out from Roth last week.
Please attend the town hall because if we do not show up UNM leaders assume staff don’t have any questions and are fully informed.
I met with HR to ask about FLSA questions that were concerns brought up from our last council meeting.
o Currently staff that chose to move to the bi-weekly payment will still have to continue to enter timesheets indicating 40 hours worked per week even though they are monthly. The reason is because the payroll system will not process the pay unless it is entered this way. HR has been holding off on moving everyone back to monthly in the system because they were unsure what the federal government was going to do after the election. The FLSA team will be meeting in May to make a decision so hopefully payroll changes will happen sometime in the new fiscal year.
HR provided an update regarding the status of FLSA that indicated no decision is expected until next year. Additionally, preliminary information indicates that the new threshold may be between $35,000 - $38,000. This is still tentative information with no decisions or directives. The FLSA team will meet in May to decide how to proceed for UNM.
We are still moving forward with the leadership opportunities within staff council and members of executive committee are meeting with staff councilors to help identify options and next steps. More updates coming soon.
I am moving forward with setting up meetings with student affairs to help create a spring break camp for 2018. The 2017 camp didn’t materialize because of lack of planning time but after this budget season I will be meeting with them to move this option forward for staff.
Health insurance will be increasing by about 5% this year. The amount it will increase per month depends on the staff person’s health insurance provider, number of people on the policy, and salary tier.
Thank you for your questions and providing me with feedback that I can share with UNM leadership and staff. Have a wonderful rest of your month.
Staff Council President