Wright State University Staff Council Minutes
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
The WSU Staff Council met on Wednesday, November 12, 2008, at 2:30 pm, in Room 248 University Hall.
Present: Council Members: Rob Boley, Barbara Bullock, Mary Healea, Joanie Hendricks, Fran Keeley, Curt Pederson, Beth Pierce, Vickie Slone, and Chris Wydman; Convener, Bill Rickert, and Staff Liaison, Albert Bondurant
1. Faculty, Staff, and Announce Listserves
Staff Council discussed the hate email received by a faculty member that he posted on the announce listserve. This was objectionable to many. Bill pointed out that, especially in a university environment, restrictions to free speech should be limited. Moreover, no employee is required to receive any of these emails.
Council discussed the possibility of combining faculty, staff, and announce listserves into one. Anyone subscribed to one or more of the three would be automatically subscribed to the new combined one. A new “events” listserve could be added, with events submitted by the Provost, Vice Presidents, Deans, CSAC, USAC and Faculty Governance. Chairs of CSAC and USAC will get opinions about this at their upcoming meetings.
2. 403b Accounts
In order to comply with new federal laws, Wright State is making changes to the approved vendor’s list for tax-deferred annuity carriers. Some previous providers with few employees will be eliminated from the list. Transfers are made electronically only, and some vendors are unable to accept them. If anyone has questions about the 403b accounts, they can contact Rich Johnson, Albert Bondurant, or Bill Rickert.
3. Short-Term Disability
All full-time benefit-eligible employees (75% FTE and above) are now eligible to purchase Voluntary Short Term Disability coverage. This option has been well received by employees. Bill Rickert said that Human Resources, Purchasing, and the WSU Staff Council were responsible for acquiring this benefit for employees.
Healthcare forums were presented to employees at several different times. They were brief presentations with slides about the choices of healthcare available for 2009. The new Anthem High Deductible Health Savings Account plan was explained. The HSA will be provided at Fifth Third Bank. The new plan was compared with Anthem’s PPO plan; and it was suggested that a slide comparing it to the HMO plan would also be helpful. Many questions were asked and answered.
Explanation of Benefit (EOB) amounts are on the Anthem website. The Anthem presentation will be on the Human Resources website by the end of the week, including a FAQ.
5. Speedway Gas Cards
A university staff member contacted USAC/CSAC about an offer to WSU employees from the Dayton Chamber of Commerce for discount cards at Speedway and Super America gas stations for 6 cents off per gallon.
The Council voiced concern that if we accept deals from one vendor, then we may have to deal with offers from other vendors as well, which could create problems. Council decided that if WSU doesn’t get any significant benefit from such an arrangement, it should be avoided.
6. Staff Survey Results Communication
Robert Sweeney discussed with Fran and Barb Bullock the possibility of having a meeting with Nadine Brown, Interim Assistant VP for Marketing and Communica-tions, about putting a significant article in the Dialogue about the results of the Staff Survey that was responded to by almost 1000 employees.
7. Supervisory Training Program
Budget uncertainties have made it difficult to finalize plans for the Department of Organizational Development and Learning, but Albert Bondurant is developing plans for a Leadership Orientation Program for new supervisors. Plans include workshops, books for reading and discussion, and online programs. Until Albert knows what resources will be available, however, no plans can be finalized.
Training programs on diversity, ethics, workplace violence, and sexual harassment will also be conducted in 2009.
8. Lake Campus Representative
Council discussed whether to have a Lake Campus representative on the WSU Staff Council.
Barb Bullock said that Lake Campus planned to have a staff council of their own, but didn’t know if they had one yet. Joanie Hendricks will call Carol Jones, Administrative Support Coordinator at Lake Campus, to find out if they do have a staff council there.
Bill Rickert said that the Provost’s Office will pay expenses for a Lake Campus rep to attend meetings on campus; and all agreed that it would be a good idea for Lake Campus to have one rep on the WSU Staff Council.
The meeting was adjourned at 4:10 pm. The next meeting of the WSU Staff Council will be on Wednesday, January 14, 2009.