ASURA Board Meeting - February 10, 2010

Board Members Present: Gary Anderson, Joyce Hartman Diaz, Elmer Gooding, Doug Johnson, Jo Madonna, Connie McNeill, Rose Minetti, Carolyn Minner, William Moor, Val Peterson, Eric Sloan, Bill Stasi, Mary Stevens

Ex-officio Members Present: Rojann Alpers, Rachel Montoya, Robert Muscari

Absent: Bob Barnhill, Jim Fordemwalt, Lou Weschler

Ex-Officio Absences: Eric Sloan

Committee Chairs Present: Jerry Aronson, Sue Blumer, Alan Johnson, Wilma Mathews

Committee Members Present: Dave Scheatzle

Committee Members and Guests:

I. CALL TO ORDER

President Mary Stevens called the meeting to order at 10:00 a.m.

II. PRESIDENT’S REPORT AND WELCOME TO GUESTS

President Stevens reported that the Community Services Building Open House that took place on Feb. 6th went quite well. She said that it was interesting to find out all that is going on in the building and knows that it increased awareness about ASURA.

Mary also said that former Board Member and President Hal White wrote an e-mail that raised some good long range questions about ASURA fund raising and special projects. She recommended that these be taken up in the fall since there is so little time left in this year.

Mary will explore more information about a possible ASURA fundraiser book sale through the Friends of the Phoenix Library.

III. REVIEW AND APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF THE PREVIOUS MTG.

The Board amended the minutes to the January 13th meeting as follows:

  • Section V D, 2 paragraph in the 2nd bulleted item should read: “For new hires on or after July 1, 2011, …”
  • Section VI, 1st bulleted paragraph should read: “Connie recommended that overhead fees be bundled into the cost of budget items and no longer shown as a separate item.” The proposal was also revised to show that there will be 9 special event mailings instead of 7.
  • Section VII, 2nd bulleted paragraph: Correct the spelling of Lonnie Ostrom’s name.

Val Peterson motioned that the minutes be approved as amended and Joyce Hartman Diaz seconded it. The motion was approved unanimously.

The Board also amended the Minutes of the January 27th Special Board Meeting as follows:

  • PAGE 2, RECOMMENDATION 2 A SHOULD READ: “Committee recommendation: Funds from fund raising should not be deposited into the endowment account because they cannot be withdrawn. The special projects account should be used for these deposits. The Board decided that it should review this issue each fiscal year. The Board also recommended that the membership enrollment form include separate lines for members to indicate additional donations to special projects, including donations to the endowment account. Elmer Gooding motioned that funds specifically donated for the endowment fund be deposited into the endowment account. Bill Moor seconded this motion and it passed."
  • Page 3: Another bullet should be included that reads, “Send thank you letters for those who donate above the basic membership donations.”

Joyce Hartman Diaz motioned that the Minutes be accepted as amended and Bill Stasi seconded the motion. It passed unanimously.

IV. Ex-Officio Reports

  • Emeritus College – No Report
  • Human Resources – Rachel Montoya represented Human Resources. She did not have a report but invited questions. Elmer Gooding did ask if ASURA can have a representative at the employee retirement meetings. Rachel said that she would check into this possibility and let Elmer know the answer.
  • University Club – No Report
  • University Liaison – No Report
  • University Senate – Rojann Alpers reported that this is the 60th anniversary year of shared governance at ASU. She then summarized the information in her written report (complete report is available in the ASURA Office).
  • University Staff Council – Robert Muscari reported that at a meeting ASU President Crow said that ASU is in decent financial shape until June, 2011 because of the federal stimulus funds. After that there will need to be substantial tuition increases. Dr. Crow does not like the way the press is portraying ASU as having open admission to everyone. He said that ASU remains selective. The university’s goal is to have all colleges and programs in the top ten. He said that many are already there and others are in the top 20. ASURA Legislative Liaison Alan Johnson asked if the University Staff Council wants to have a representative liaison at the legislature. Robert said that this would not be possible because members are still working and could not take additional time off to do this.

V. STANDING COMMITTEE REPORTS

  1. Community Outreach Committee – Sub-Committee Reports
    • Adopt-A-Family – No Report
    • Scholarship Committee – Sue Blumer and Joyce Hartman Diaz met briefly on February 8th to discuss scholarship criteria as it has been used in the past by the scholarship committee.
    • Video History Project – Dave Schaetzle reported that they have done 2 interviews since the January Board Meeting.
  2. Events Committee – Sub-committee Reports
    • Luncheons – No Report
    • Retirees Day – Val Peterson reported that as of Monday there were over 100 registrants and that the selected sessions were nicely distributed. Keynote speaker Hugh Downs has requested an escort and electric cart to drive him to the Memorial Union from the University Club parking lot. Val is looking into options.
    • Travel – Bill Stasi and Gary Anderson reported that as of this meeting 20 individuals are signed up for the Olive Mill trip and 21 are going to China. A member of the NAU Retirees Association is going on the trip to China with our group. The NAU Retirees Association is interested in continuing to receive information about ASURA events and being invited as is appropriate. They will also reciprocate. The UofA Retirees Association did not indicate this same interest.
  3. Finance Committee/Treasurer Report – A written report was distributed (available in the ASURA Office)Carolyn Minner reported that our quarterly phone bill will increase to $800 and include long distance. This means that the cost of our phone service will increase from the projected $1250 to $3200 per year. Since phone service is paid by Public Affairs as part of the annual financial support they provide to ASURA, this increase will negatively impact some other area of their support of our organization.
  4. Government Liaison Council
    • ASRS General – Alan Johnson said that there would be no report about ASRS today so that Jerry Aronson could have more time for his report on the legislative activity. Elmer Gooding said that he has an issue that ASURA Legislative Liaisons may want to raise. He spoke briefly about the K – 12 public school teachers who retire and collect pensions from ASRS and then get hired by a private company which leases them back to the school districts. In this way, the teachers are collecting both a pension and a salary but no longer contributing to ASRS while they are working. Alan said that this is definitely happening and that it is legal at this time. He further said that Jerry Aronson will have more to say about this issue.
    • Legislature – Jerry Aronson distributed a written report (available in the ASURA Office) outlining several House and Senate Bills of interest that are making their way through the legislature. Jerry spoke about a few of the bills.
      • HB 2390 addresses the issue that Elmer mentioned about K-12 teachers contributing to ASRS while employed by a private company. This bill would require employers to pay an Alternate Contribution Rate for retired Plan members who are returning to work and filling positions that would otherwise be filled by members for whom employer and employee contributions are being paid into the Plan Fund.
      • HB 2341 proposes a new retirement plan for new employees that make the employees nearly entirely responsible for their own retirement contribution. This would serve to get the state out of subsidizing retirement. This bill is not expected to get very far but the ASURA legislative liaisons would like to be prepared if it does move forward.
      • SB 1083 contains provisions of HB 2066 plus added provision for return of 25% of employer contributions for ASRS members terminating employment voluntarily; also contains the return to work Alternate Contribution Rate and the Long Term Disability appeal provisions.
      Jerry said that issues that start out in one bill may end up being a part of another bill. Therefore, the legislative liaisons would like to approach their duties on an issue basis rather than a bill by bill basis. The Board has previously taken a position in support of Issues 1, 2 and 3 of the attached report. Jerry asked for the Board to now take positions on Issues 4 through 8.
      • On Issue #4 Doug Johnson moved to reaffirm our previous position to support the return of 25% of employer contributions for ASRS members terminating employment voluntarily. Mary Stevens seconded the motion and the motion passed unanimously.
      • On Issues 5, 6 and 8: Bill Stasi motioned that we 1) On issue #5 support the position that employers of pension drawing retirees pay an Alternate Contribution rate, 2) on Issue #6 oppose the position that LTD premiums be paid by employees, and 3) on Issue #8 oppose the proposal currently known as SB 1011. Connie McNeill seconded this motion and it was passed unanimously.
      • On Issue #7 Bill Moor motioned that we oppose the provisions in HB 2341 or anything similar. Bill Stasi seconded the motion and it was passed unanimously.
  5. Health Insurance Liaison Council
    • ADOA – No Report
    • ASRS Benefit – No Report
  6. Membership and Communications Committee
    • Membership Update – Elmer Gooding reported that we now have 674 members. The report (available in the ASURA Office) now also includes aggregate information about the state of residence of members.
    • Website and Database – No Report

VI. OLD BUSINESS

  1. Parking Decals for Non-Faculty Retirees Update – Mary Stevens reported that the appropriate system has been reprogrammed and changed to show retiree status. Non-Faculty Retirees may purchase a parking decal for $260/year. The Board’s position is that it is in favor of all retirees receiving the same parking benefit as the Emeritus College faculty receive.
  2. Computer Store Purchases at Academic Price Update – Mary Stevens reported that if non-faculty retirees want a discount the individual needs to go to the Bookstore and ask them for contact information for vendors. The retiree must then contact the vendor directly and request a discount. It will be up to the vendor whether or not to authorize the discount.
  3. Fund Raiser – On-line Book Sales through Friends of the Libraries – Mary will follow-up with Wilma Mathews on this issue.

VII. NEW BUSINESS

  1. Election for Five New Board Members – Val Peterson and Carolyn Minner

    Ballots have been mailed and 50 have been returned so far.

  2. Annual Meeting – Mary StevensLattie Coor will the guest speaker. Annual committee reports are due to Mary by March 15.

VIII. NEXT MEETING

The next Board meeting will be on Wednesday, March 10, 2010.

IX. MEETING ADJOURNMENT

Bill Stasi made a motion that the meeting be adjourned and Rose Minetti seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously and the meeting was adjourned at Noon.