Senate Minutes 2/02

University of Alabama at Birmingham
The Faculty Senate
Minutes of the Faculty Senate Meeting of 11 February 2002



The UAB Faculty Senate met on 11 January 2002 in 407 Ryals Building. The agenda adopted by the Executive Committee was distributed (Document 1).

Those present were: Officers: Hickson (Chair), Wyss (Past Chair), Schnorrenberg (Secretary), Tim Heaven (Chair Elect). Senators: Anderson, Basilico, Beard, Eleftherious, Givan, Greenup, Hutchison, Justement, Liber, Mercado, Pfeiffer, Reed, Rigney, Swanson, Telfair, Than, Waites, Ward, Weaver, Wilson. Alternates: Bodon, Griffin, Laken, Martin, Phillips. Ex officio: Augsburger (Provost). Guests: Wayne Echols, Ted Bennditt, James Lowery, Rosalia Scripa, Gordon Stone.

The Chair of the Faculty called the meeting to order at 7:40 a.m.

The chair asked if there were any corrections to the minutes of the meeting of 8 January 2002, as distributed (Document 2). Hearing none, he ordered the minutes approved as distributed.

The Chair introduced Gordon Stone, Director of the Higher Education Partnership.

Mr. Stone urged senators to attend Higher Education Day in Montgomery. He pointed out that higher education still is receiving only28% of the state education revenues, down from its past 33%. Alabama ranks forty-fourth among the states in faculty salaries. He said that tuition is 31% of the revenue of public higher education in Alabama. Nationally the average is 28%. Higher education is worse off than it was two years ago and would still be worse off even if it got 33% of state revenue for education.

He said that the Higher Education Partnership will work with those who seek constitutional reform.

The Chair introduced Wayne Echols to give a legislative update.

Mr. Echols said that we need to emphasize Higher Education Day. He warned that education is in serious trouble in other states. There is a two billion dollar deficit in Virginia. In Alabama individual income tax returns are down. This could mean a one or two per cent proration cut.

He said that 38% of the pie is less money. Unless we get a 2.25% raise in state funded accounts, we shall be worse off.

Our new Blazer Pac helps us get support from legislators, but Mr.Hubbard has far more money than we. Mr. Echols stressed that UAB has 16,000 employees living in local legislative districts. They need to make their voices heard. If you cannot go to Montgomery, write a letter to your legislators.

The Chair gave his report.

He said that senators have the Faculty Awards report before them (Document 3). They also have the Proposed Change to the Academic Calendar for 2002-03. The change would start spring semester on January 6 and end spring final examinations on May 5. (Document 4).

The Chair mentioned the Summary of Credit Courses Offered via IITS for Fall 2001 and Spring 2002. This had been distributed to the senate. (Document 5)

The Chair then made a power point presentation concerning the numbers of students taught by faculty. The data came from the office of Vice President John Lyons. They had been given to the Executive Committee in response to its question about numbers of full and part time faculty, numbers of tenured and non tenured faculty, and numbers on nine month and twelve month contracts. Information was provided by school and only for the academic affairs schools.

Senators Ward, Basilico, Wilson, Schnorrenberg and Eleftherious asked questions about the report. Senator Wilson asked that the report be put on the Senate Web Page. [Click here to see the report.] A web page copy is attached to these minutes as Document 6. Senator Wilson asked whether schools not in academic affairs could know their productivity. Senator Reed said that comparable data is not available for these schools through the Southern universities Group.

The Chair recognized Senator Reed to give the report of the Finance Committee (Document 7). She reported that the Fringe Benefits Committee has been constituted as a continuing group. It will meet at the call of its hair, Richard Margison.

The Chair recognized Senator Schnorrenberg to give a report for the Elections Committee. He said that a number of schools had not yet submitted nominations. The deadline is 15 February. He urged the school committees to provide names if they have not done so.

The Chair recognized Senator Rigney to give the report of the Curriculum and Research Committee. Senator Rigney said that the committee was planning a survey of faculty response to the new semester system. The questions are now being developed.

The Chair recognized Senator Wyss to report for the Faculty Policies and Procedures Committee (Document 8). Senator Wyss moved

The Senate approves the change proposed by the Committee to Page 35, Section 3.10, Ownership of Intellectual Property Rights (Patent Policy), as follows:

Delete the second sentence of the fourth paragraph and replace it with the following sentence:
Any such invention or discovery (1) which is the result of research carried on by or under the direction of any employee of the University and/or having the costs thereof paid from University funds or from funds under the control of or administered by the University, or (2) which is made by an employee of the University and which relates to the inventor's field of work at the University, or (3) which has been developed in whole or in part by the utilization of resources or facilities belonging to the University, shall be assigned to the University.

Senator Wyss observed that this was the first presentation to the senate of this change. It was proposed to bring the Faculty handbook into conformity with Board of Trustee regulations. The senate could comment on the proposal and return it to the committee at this time.

The Chair put the question and the motion carried on the first reading.

Senator Wyss said that the revisions in the Faculty Handbook are moving fast and that it is hoped they will be complete by summer.

The Chair recognized Senator Heaven who described the new retirement alternative for faculty and staff who have served for more than 25 years.. Information about this will be put on the Senate Listserv.

The Chair urged that senators participate in the planned workshops on constitutional reform for Alabama. He asked for an informal vote about this and a majority present indicated their support.

Senator Weaver asked if there were any progress on the presidential search. The Chair said that the committee would meet tomorrow and that it had some applications.

There being no further business, the Chair adjourned the meeting at 9 a.m.


Respectfully submitted,

John M. Schnorrenberg
Secretary of the Faculty



NOTE: Documents referred to in the text are attached to the original of these minutes. If you wish to have a copy of an attached document, e-mail your request to Stephanie Belcher. Please specify the date of the Senate meeting and the number of the document you desire. They will be sent by campus mail.