UNH Faculty Senate

Summary Minutes from 25 September, 2000




I. Roll - The following Faculty Senate members were absent: Afolayan, Bornstein, Denis, Draper, Farrell, Halstead, Jago, Macieski, McCann, Russell, Tucker, and VonDamm. Absent as work to rule were: Ashwell, Carr, Christie, Dolan, Givan, Hall, Kaye, Krysiak, Planalp, Schiller, Simpson, Slomba, and Stine. Excused was Trowbridge.

II. Communications with the president - The president commented on the recent visit of Orlando Taylor, Dean of the Graduate School of Howard University, and said that UNH and Howard University are looking at ways to connect some departments on our campus with the corresponding departments at Howard University, perhaps through faculty and/or student exchanges. The president's state-of-the-university speech is available for review on her web site. The president thanked the people who helped with the legislative football game festivities on Saturday. The president commented that the new chancellor, after his visit to UNH, referred to the university as "excellence on a human scale". The Alumni Advocacy Network will work with the chancellor to help the citizens and the state legislature understand the importance of better state funding for the university. The president added that she hopes to get support in that effort also from the Board of the Business and Industry Association. She said that there may be a breakthrough soon in collective bargaining.

III. Quorum - John Archer and Elizabeth Hageman from the English Department and Piero Garofalo and Claire Malarte-Feldman from the Department of Languages, Literatures and Cultures announced that they will not attend senate meetings until the faculty contract is signed. The chair said that the Agenda Committee had planned to send out a memo asking the departments with senate vacancies to fill them, but that memo is not being sent at this time. After the contract is settled, the senate could decide if the Faculty Senate and governance by faculty should be related to a lack of contract. Faculty Senate could fall into the same category as teaching and serving on promotion and tenure committees.

The Agenda Committee reviewed the definition of a quorum and found that a previous senate chair had consulted with the university attorney on this issue. The attorney had confirmed that a quorum should be more than half of the persons who have been elected senator. This is the method of calculating a quorum which has been used throughout the senate's existence. Based on precedence and legal counsel, the Agenda Committee states that a quorum is more than half of the persons who are currently faculty senators. Any senator at the meeting will count towards that quorum. We will use this definition until the senate has a quorum and reviews the issue. Since we do not have a quorum today, we will postpone all votes on substantive motions, such as the vote to confirm the senate chair and vice chair. The former senate vice chair will continue to act as chair in the meantime.

IV. Communications from the acting chair - Raelene Shippee-Rice will continue to convene the Academic Affairs Committee, which has postponed electing a chair; and Ken Appel will do the same for the Finance and Administration Committee. Todd Gross is chair of the Campus Planning Committee. James Farrell is chair of the Student Affairs Committee, but that committee will not meet until the contract is signed. Tony Tagliafero is still convener of the Research and Public Service Committee, and there is no information from the senate's Library Committee.

V. Postponed votes - In addition to postponing the vote on senate chair and vice chair and quorum issues, we will also postpone votes on the senate minutes, UCAPC membership, and the motion on procedures.

VI. Open mike - The convener of the Finance and Administration Committee said that this committee will meet with the Vice President for Financial Affairs next week to get information which the committee members who are present can pass on to the absent members. There are some decisions coming up which are crucial faculty interests. For example, a decision may be made soon on changes in faculty titles and hiring parameters. This should be reviewed by the senate not because the administration wants it but because the faculty have a strong need to give input and affect the draft before the decision is made. The senate acting chair will ask the vice president for academic affairs if he will put the latest draft on his web site so that faculty can access the information.

One faculty member said that the senate should discuss and prepare for motions but that the senate should not pass any motions until the contract is signed. Another professor said that we should decide which issues facing us are academic faculty governance issues which are truly important to faculty and which of those issues can be set aside indefinitely and which cannot or will be acted on by the administration if the faculty do not choose to give their input. The Faculty Senate chair could send a memo about this to the senators and also to the department chairs.

VII. Adjournment - Today's meeting was adjourned.

Click HERE to return to the main Faculty Senate Minutes page.