A&S Planning and Budget Commmittee Minutes Nov 19 1998

Art's & Sciences Planning and Budget CommitteeMinutes of 11/19/98 Meeting

    Members attending:
  • George Barnes
  • Julia Dietrich (ex officio)
  • Stephen Edgell
  • Robert Kimball
  • Nathan Schwartz (Chair)
  • Wiley Williams

    Visitors attending:
  • Dave Baugh
  • Jeanie McCabe
The minutes of October 29, 1998 were approved.

It was reported that Dean Moore has found out the reason for the reduction in the A&S; travel and research budgets this year. He had negotiated increases in these two budget lines when he was being recruited for the position of Dean. However, the University Office of Planning and Budget had failed to make any record that these were to be CAR increases. Thus these two budget lines reverted back this year to their previous levels. The Provost says that she has no knowledge of any promise of a CAR increase (the negotiations were with the previous Provost) and declined to reinstate these funds. The Committee wondered how anyone could reasonably think that a candidate for Dean might have negotiated for a one year increase in these lines.

Our next meeting will be Thursday, December 10 at 2:30, in a place to be announced.

The remainder of the meeting was taken up by a report from Dave Baugh on the status of technology in the College and the effort to improve it using the reallocated funds that will be available this year and next. (The amount this year is $782779.00.) Some of the highlights of that report follow.

The first priority is to do a comprehensive assessment of the present state of technology in the College. This is currently underway. It should be noted that this is also assessing the year 2000 issue. Both assessments are the same. It was noted that it has been 6 years since a College-wide technology assessment has been done. None was done during this interim because no funds were ever available to rectify problems such an assessment would uncover. The schedule calls for this assessment to be completed and a report prepared by early January. Hopefully, by then, the University will have the site license in place for Y2K testing software to assist in this assessment.

It was noted that Y2K problems are only a subset of the problems that the College will try to address with this two year program. Access to the new software systems (e.g., the new library system, new email servers and clients, the University's document imaging system, new human resources systems, and new student administration systems) is crucial.

Currently there is no plan for how the decisions will be made or who will make them as to what to spend this year's money on. Such a plan will be forthcoming only after the assessment is complete. It is expected that the general priorities will be first to solve the year 2000 problems identified by the assessment. Of course we have many critical needs beyond the Y2K problems. The next order of priority will be determined by the greatest need. This will probably include providing access to new systems such as the library system. This will require bringing everyone up to a minimum of ethernet and a color WIN 3.1 PC. Also included in this is staff and faculty access to the new administrative systems. This will require ethernet and a higher standard PC.

It is estimated that the two-year project will cover all needs in faculty and staff workstations. We will probably need to spend over $100K just on wiring ethernet.

In the future we will have to address a host of needs, including: Department teaching labs and research labs, student computing needs. The latter has been mandated by SACS. It was noted that students labs are too costly, but an alternative might be the wiring of classrooms for students to use their own laptops. The College will need to hire support people to meet the tier support plan being implemented by the University. There has not been much planning in A&S; for these needs, and we can expect no new money to cover them.

The hour allocated for the meeting having expired, the Committee adjourned, but before it did, Jeanie McCabe gave the Committee a slew of documents to use in preparing our annual report to the faculty.

Respectfully submitted, Steve Edgell

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