ASURA Board Meeting - May 13, 2009

Board Members Present:  Gary Anderson, Joyce Hartman Diaz, James Fordemwalt, Jo Madonna, Connie McNeill, Rose Minetti, Carolyn Minner, William Moor, Lonnie Ostrom, Val Peterson, Eric Sloan (Ex-Officio), Bill Stasi, Mary Stevens, Phil VanderMeer (Ex-Officio)

Absent:  Bob Barnhill, Elmer Gooding, Robert Muscari, Lou Weschler

Committee Chairs:  Linda Van Scoy, Alan Johnson, Sue Blumer, Dave Scheatzle

I.     Call to Order

The meeting was called to order at 10:30am by President Mary Stevens

II.    President's Report and Welcome

President Mary Stevens introduced and welcomed the Board and Committee Chairs.    She reminded everyone that this would be the last Board meeting until September.

III.   Review and Approval of Minutes of March 11, 2009 Meeting

Val Peterson motioned that minutes be approved and Connie McNeill seconded the motion.  Minutes were unanimously approved.

IV.    Ex-Officio Reports -

Emeritus College- No report - Lou Weschler absent due to illness.

Human Resources - No report - Mary Stevens will check with HR to see if there will be a HR liaison to ASURA.

University Club - Jim Fordemwalt provided a handout to the board which provided news about a decrease in the number of University Club members and some upcoming activities and events.  He also indicated that he has been appointed to fill a vacancy on the University Club Board which resulted from a resignation due to illness.

University Public Affairs Liaison - Eric Sloan is now working on some legislative issues for the university.  He reported that Public Affairs is committed to staying involved with ASURA.  Mary Stevens thanked Public Affairs for the ASURA support of $7000.  Eric also reported that efforts to reduce mailings have been effective in reducing printing costs as well as postage.  Public Affairs is relying more heavily on electronic communication.  He also reported on the plans for Spring Commencement scheduled for that evening.

Faculty Senate - Phil VanderMeer reported that there is now a university-wide faculty Senate and that they are relying heavily video conferencing to facilitate participation.  A number of university-wide committees have also been established.  The Senate President-elect is Rojann Alpers.  She is on faculty at the Downtown Campus.  He also reported that the University Council budget exercise was very challenging and that it included a substantial reduction in a number of staff.  However, President Crow said that financially the university should be OK for the next two years because of the federal stimulus package appropriation.

University Staff Council - No representative attended and no report was given.

V.   Old Business

1.  Budget Issues - Connie McNeill and Carolyn Minner

Mary recalled some budget discussion points that have taken place at previous meetings:  dues increase, Public Affairs level of contribution to ASURA, donations from members, increased use of e-mail, reduction in number of PrimeTimes and paid advertising, and revenue generating activities. 

Mary asked Connie McNeill and Carolyn Minner to present the budget reports which they prepared.  Connie explained that ASURA has two accounts.  One is an Operations Account, which is a basic general account and the other is a Special Events (Projects) Account.  The source of revenue for the latter was an annual golf tournament.  It was originally sent up to support the Video History Project and then last year it was agreed that this account could support other ASURA charitable activities as well. Financial Reports, as of 4/30/09, on each of these accounts were distributed.

An account spreadsheet was also distributed that explained the FY09 expenditures and a proposed FY10 budget based on projected expenditures for both accounts.  It included recommendations to move the costs of the Scholarship and Adopt-a-family projects from the Operations Budget to the Special Projects budget.  The reports and spreadsheet were explained line by line, including how the FY10 proposals and projections were developed.  The addition of an equipment expense of $3,000 to the Operations Budget was also recommended but a more fully developed proposal for this will be submitted in the Fall. 

Lonnie Ostrom recommended that ASURA establish an endowment account with the Foundation.  He said that the organization needs to be a strong entity so that we can remain effective in the future.  Sue Blumer asked if we might already have this type of account since she remembers a previous discussion about this years ago.  Val Peterson and Dave Scheatzle said that one was never established and that and donations that ASURA receives are put into the operations account.

The ASURA scholarship was discussed.  The proposed budget recommends that the scholarship be raised to $6500 because tuition has been increased.  Mary Stevens asked for discussion on this increase.  Alan Johnson said that he thinks there is a current cap of $5000 on the ASURA scholarship.  Sue Blumer commented that we have already advertised the scholarship as a $5000 amount.  She asked if we could add $1500 to a second applicant.  Alan Johnson said that we advertised it as one scholarship and suggested that this not be changed.  Bill Moor commented that a recipient would not object to receiving a larger scholarship than expected.  He motioned that the scholarship be increased to $6500 and Rose Minetti seconded the motion.  Bill amended his motion to say that it should be increased to $6500 if the applicant's FAFSA shows need.  Jim Fordemwalt asked if the scholarship is designed to cover tuition for the year plus other needs based on the FAFSA form information.  Sue confirmed that this was the original intent and that need is based on the FAFSA information.  Gary Anderson called the question.   The motion was carried unanimously. 

No one had any additional questions about the budget. Val Peterson made a motion to accept the proposed budget.  Bill Moor seconded the motion and members approved it unanimously. 

2. Membership Renewal Form and Membership Dues Donation

Connie McNeill showed the board a proposed newly revised membership enrollment form and a discussion ensued and suggestions offered. The form will now provide space for members to voluntarily donate an additional sum for special projects and operating costs.  There is no longer a reduced dues donation level for associate members because according to the new by-laws these members can now vote.  It was reported that 105 members indicated "no preference" about how they received information and announcements, either by e-mail or hard copy through the postal service.  The form will indicate that e-mail contact will be used if "no preference" is selected on the membership form. 

Val Peterson then opened a discussion about increasing dues donation.  He indicated that he thought a discussion about lifetime membership dues donation should be postponed for a few months.  For the time being, he suggested that the board focus on an annual dues donation increase at this meeting.  He motioned that the annual dues donation be increased to $20 and Jim Fordemwalt seconded the motion.  The measure passed unanimously.

3. Revenue Generation - Lonnie Ostrom

Lonnie Ostrom said that very few people on campus know about ASURA and suggested that consideration should be given to having a Retiree Event on campus.  It could be designed to educate people about the organization and also generate organizational funds.  He suggested that perhaps Memorial Union vendors could be approached to help sponsor such an event. 

He also said that the organization could become much more aggressive about asking members for gifts and promoting lifetime memberships.  Planned giving could also be introduced to membership.  He said that people seem to be more willing to give money to organizations with endowments because they know the gift is sustainable.  He reported that an endowment account requires a commitment of growing the account to a minimum of $10,000.  A payout cannot be made until the account reaches $25,000.

Because of time constraints, Mary Stevens asked that the board continue this discussion in September.

VI.  New Business

1.   Video History Committee request to purchase equipment - Linda Van Scoy

Linda recommended that ASURA purchase the camera equipment that would enable us to do our own recording for the project rather than pay others to do it.  John McIntosh and Dave Scheatzle have volunteered to take on this responsibility.  It would cost approximately $2000 and there would be little additional costs.  This approach would save the organization the significant costs that have been associated with the project in the past.

Bill Moor made a motion to accept the proposal and Connie McNeill seconded the motion.   There was a discussion about the security of the equipment.  Dave Scheatzle advised that there is a locked cabinet in the locked storage room.  A check out procedure will be introduced in September.

Connie McNeill suggested that the motion be amended to include the cost of an extended warranty and shipping.  Bill Moor did amend his original motion and Connie seconded the motion.  The motion passed with unanimous approval.

2.    Ratification of committee and sub-committee chairs - Mary Stevens

The names of committee chairs were put forward.  Val Peterson motioned that the list be approved and Jim Fordemwalt seconded.  Approval was unanimous.

3. Change start time of Board meetings to 10 AM, effective Sept. 9, 2009 - Mary Stevens

4.  Due to time constraints and length of the meeting Mary Stevens requested that remaining committee reports be submitted in writing.

VII.  Meeting Adjournment  - Val Peterson motioned that the meeting be adjourned and Bill Stasi seconded the motion.  Approval was unanimous. 

Submitted by Jo Madonna, Secretary
Approved at the 9/9/2009 Board Meeting