Staff Senate Overview, June 2014
The Staff Senate is part of UofL's shared governance system, which also includes the Faculty Senate and the Student Government Association. Senators are elected by their peers.
The full body met in regular session June 9 at Ekstrom Library. Chair Angela Lewis-Klein presided. The following are highlights from the meeting.
Elections were held for sitting officers for the 2014-2015 school year. The winners were:
Chair: Angela Lewis-Klein
Vice Chair: Will Armstrong
Secretary/Treasurer: Gary Southard
On a voice vote, the Senate approved key sections of a recommendation, requested by the Provost, for disbursement of salary increase funds at varying levels when they are available. This is to give the Provost clear guidelines for funding salary increases from year to year if the money is available.
According to the approved document, the disbursement of funds for salary increases would be divided between merit raises and cost-of-living allowances (COLA). Merit increases would be based on an evaluation of “Exceeds Expectations” or above, and a COLA increase would be applied across the board for all ratings of “Meets Expectations” and above. COLA would be funded first with merit awards applied if additional funds were available. For example, if there was a 3 percent pool for salary increases, 1.5 percent would be applied as a cost-of-living increase, and 1.5 percent would be distributed for merit raises.
After some discussion, senators also approved the portion of the document that calls for merit increases to be awarded at the “merit pool” level and for administrators for each merit pool to be instructed and trained to promote consistency in ratings.
Also approved was a provision that would allow a portion of merit funds to be redistributed among those who achieve the “Exceeds Expectations” evaluation in the event there are no “Outstanding” evaluations, and distributed to those who “Meet Expectations” in the event there are also no “Exceeds Expectations” evaluations.
The approved recommendation will be taken to Provost Shirley Willihnganz by June 30.
Sam Connally, vice president for human resources, outlined a plan to set up an informal revolving loan program for staff members. The program, while not yet finalized, would likely allow for small, no- interest loans to staff of no more than $500. The loans would be paid back through payroll withdrawals.
Connally also said his office is working on updating the market evaluation of staff and faculty salaries. He said staff and faculty salaries at UofL are at 96.3 percent of market value. The goal is to be at 100 percent by 2020. He said staff and faculty salaries at UofL currently vary between 80 percent and 110 percent of market value.
The next Staff Senate meeting will be July 14 in Ekstrom Library’s Chao Auditorium.
--Prepared for the Staff Senate by Janet Cappiello, UofL Today editor, communications specialist, UofL Office of Communications and Marketing.