ASURA Board Meeting - March 11, 2009

Board Members Present: Robert Barnhill, Mat Betz, Ted Cary, Joyce Hartman Diaz, Elmer Gooding, Alan Johnson, Doug Johnson, Maxine LaRoux, Val Peterson, Mary Stevens

Absent: Bob Francis

Committee Chairs: Jerome Aronson, Sue Blumer, James Fordemwalt, Alan Johnson, Joan Leard, Dick Murra, David Scheatzle, Lou Weschler

Guests: Jo Madonna, Rose Minetti, Carolyn Minner, Bill Stasi

I. & II. Call to Order and Comments:

President Val Peterson called the meeting to order at 10:30 am. Val announced that this would be the final Board meeting of his tenure as President. He requested that reports for the Annual Meeting Report be submitted no later than March 15. Val spoke about his five-year endeavor to produce a personal history book for his family and recommended it as a personally rewarding exercise.

III. Minutes: The February minutes were approved with the following corrections:

Page 2 - V. Standing Committee Reports:

Legislative Liaison Council: Alan Johnson submitted a report for Jerry Aronson. It explained that the four ASRS legislative proposals approved at the January ASURA meeting have been combined into an omnibus bill, HB2111, and that the proposal to cap employer contribution refunds at 25% has been amended to 0%. The consensus of the Board was to prefer 25% still but to favor approval of 2111, or a similar bill including the three proposals, despite inclusion of the 0% amendment.

Retirement System Liaison: Alan Johnson reviewed the attached report. Of concern is the use of furloughs and salary cuts by state agencies to deal with the impact of budget cuts mandated by the State Legislature.

IV. Ex-Officio Reports:

Emeritus College: Lou Weschler reported that the Emeritus College offices have moved to Old Main and the organization is faced with budget cuts the same as other campus groups. Later in the meeting there was a discussion regarding ASURA's relationship and structure with the Emeritus College. Lou Weschler and Elmer Gooding will look into the possibility of having a joint Board Meeting.

V. Standing Committee Reports:

Finance/Treasurer: Ted Cary distributed copies of the current operations financial report as of 2/28/09 showing a balance of $16,178. However, it was noted that the approximate cost of $3,400 for Retirees Day is not included. The Special Events budget remains the same as last reported.

Membership: A Membership Committee has been formed consisting of the following members: Elmer Gooding, Connie McNeill, Carolyn Minner and Dave Scheatzle. Membership renewal letters will be sent the latter part of June.

Education Committee: Bob Barnhill thanked all those who worked to make Retirees Day successful. Val Peterson commented that this event is the highlight of the year and draws the largest audience of all events. Bob Barnhill recommended more structure in the future.

Legislative Liaison Council: Jerome Aronson reported that there has been no legislative action on House Bills 2111, 2112, 2113, 2114 and 2115 and they are not on any committee agendas at present. SB 1345 appears to be a companion bill to HB2111 and is not currently scheduled for any action.

Retirement System Liaison: Alan Johnson reported that his biggest concern is that the budget for the ASRS fund was down to about $18.9 billion in February. However, an outside investment consultant "anticipates that the beginnings of significant recovery for the economy, the market, and thus for the ASRS fund will appear in the fourth quarter of 2009 or probably in the first quarter of 2010. For more details see the full report in the attachments.

University Club: Jim Fordemwalt, as ASURA's new liaison to the University Club, reported that he is assisting in development of a questionnaire in an effort to attract more members to the University Club.

VI. Other Reports:

Travel and Luncheon: Bill Stasi reported that 20 individuals attended the ASU Collections tour, 40 individuals have registered for the Canyon de Chelly trip and a trip o the Verde Canyon Railroad is scheduled November 4-5. Thirty travel survey responses were received that will be helpful in future planning. Notices of the Spring Luncheon at the Mesa Broadway Theatre on May 6 were sent via e-mail and flyers have been prepared for distribution otherwise. Thanks were expressed to Bill Stasi and Jo Madonna for their excellent planning of these activities.

Annual Meeting: The Annual Meeting will be Thursday, April 16, in the Alumni Lounge of the Memorial Union. The featured speaker will be Diane Gruber from the West campus, whose topic will be Lifelong Learning. Ways to avoid parking on campus were suggested, including parking at the Tempe Library and taking the free Jupiter bus or using the Light Rail train.

May Board Meeting: The first meeting of the 2009-10 year will be held on May 13. Agenda items should be sent to Mary Stevens, President.

Adopt-a-Family: Joan Leard reported that she will deliver gifts to our two adopted families a week before Easter.

Health Insurance: After a discussion of advertised additional discounts on Medicare Secure Horizons Complete Program, Dick Murra stated that Arizona State Health Insurance had not been involved in his promotion. Doug Johnson and Rose Minetti volunteered to assist Dick with health insurance issues.

Prime Times: Dave Scheatzle announced that the current issue of Prime Times is completed and going to press this week.

Scholarship: Sue Blumer explained that applications for 2009-2010 will be distributed soon. The current recipient will speak at the April Annual Meeting.

Video History Project: Linda Van Scoy submitted a written report stating that all of the 49 DVDs have been distributed and DVDs are also available in the ASURA office. Ten potential interviewees have agreed to participate, plus two others to be contacted will be scheduled for fall and spring 2010.

Website: Connie McNeill reported that the website has been updated to advertise and support our Board elections, Retirees Day, the ASU Collections tour, and the Video History Project. Additional changes are planned to support the next membership drive. The number of daily hits are double over last year.

VII. Old Business

Bylaws Ballot: Mary Stevens noted that 193 ballots were received, with 191 approvals and 2 rejections of the amendments. The amendments will become effective April 16 and will be published on the ASURA web page.

Board Elections: Doug Anderson announced that 191 ballots for election of Board Members with a three-year term expiring April 2012 were received. The newly elected Board Members are: Rose Minetti, Carolyn Minner, William Moor, Lonnie Ostrom and Gary Anderson.

VIII. New Business:

Nomination/Appointment of Board Vacancies: A motion was made and passed unanimously to appoint James Fordemwalt, Jo Madonna and Bill Stasi to fill the three current vacancies on the ASURA Board.

Election of Officers: Val Peterson presented to the Board the following slate of Officers for the 2009-2010 year: President, Mary Stevens; Vice President, Connie McNeill; Immediate Past President, Val Peterson; Treasurer, Joyce Hartman Diaz; Secretary, Jo Madonna. A motion was made and passed unanimously to approve these candidates.

ASURA Budget Issues: Since the ASU budget is scheduled for reduction, ASURA will be receiving less monetary support from the Office of Public Affairs. Various ways to reduce costs and increase income were discussed. Suggestions included an increase of dues, change dues to donation, increased use of e-mail, reduce number of Prime Times issues, paid advertising, one-time donations, memorial gifts and discussion with Public Affairs.

Dues Increase and Life-Time Membership Proposal: Val peterson presented a paper suggesting an increase of dues to $20 per year and the introduction of a $300 Lifetime Membership. This matter was thoroughly discussed, but no consensus was reached. Discussion will continue in the May Board Meeting.

Adjournment: The meeting adjourned at 12:40 pm

Respectfully submitted,

Maxine LaRoux, Secretary