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  Melissa Lane
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Wednesday, February 15, 2017



Chair Matthew Rom called the meeting to order at 1:32 p.m. in the Sooner Room of the Oklahoma Memorial Union.
Officers present – Matthew Rom, Chair; John Bishop, Chair-Elect; Debbie Copp, Immediate Past Chair; Emilie Bozek, Recording Secretary

Staff present – Melissa Lane, Administrative Coordinator

Representatives present – Hourly Employees Council: Kristen Holmes, Ross Mehl, Cecilia Holmes, Crystal Ary, Nick McCracken, Julie Hamburger, David Kizer, Suzie Brewer; Informational Staff Association: Carl Sinclair,  Sarah Connelly, Chris Cook; Organizational Staff Council: Kristi Wright, Marissa Pierson, Jackie Downing, Daveena Stratton, Julia Rouse, Betty Love; Administrative Staff Council: David Goodspeed

Representatives absent — Hourly Employees Council: Dalton Brasington, Stephanie Gerhard, Hope Abraham; Informational Staff Association: Elaine Bradshaw, Corey Helms

Guests present — Shane Roddy and Charles Lubnesky


On motion by Nick McCracken the minutes of January 18, 2017, Staff Senate meeting were accepted.


Matthew met with Nick Hathaway on January 19, 2017, for their regularly scheduled monthly meeting. Meeting topics included employee concerns with the transition from BCBSOK to Cigna. The meeting also included a preliminary discussion of budgetary challenges facing the University as a result of the forecasted state budget deficit.

Matthew attended the University of Oklahoma Board of Regents meeting on January 26, 2017, at the OU Health Sciences Center. President Boren was honored for his fifty years of public service. Matthew reported that several faculty, staff and students attended the event. Additional actions taken during the meeting included naming the CCE Administration Building in honor of Dr. James Pappas for his numerous years of service to the institution.

The Faculty Senate met on February 13, 2017, for their regularly scheduled meeting. Discussion included an overview of the University’s new clock-in/timekeeping system as well as challenges facing faculty and students as a result of President Trump’s executive order restricting entry into the United States to individual’s from certain countries. The Faculty Senate began discussions on developing a new committee to examine diversity, equity, and inclusion within the faculty.

Future meeting speakers will be Nick Hathaway to discuss the University’s budget and a representative to discuss the new clock-in system.


Administrative Staff Council:  President David Goodspeed reported that they did not meet for the month of February. They still have not had any volunteers approach them to serve as Vice President and still have not had any volunteers offer help for the staff picnic.

Hourly Employees Council:  President Kristen Holmes reported that they met and discussed changing how elections are conducted within the HEC groups. They also discussed staff week with regards to the merit awards and ice cream social.

Informational Staff Association:  President Carl Sinclair reported that they discussed the council vacancies, awards selection committee and art show for staff week.  They also discussed the potential for having a tour and meeting at the National Weather Center in March.

Organizational Staff Council:  President Kristi Wright reported that they met and Rhonda Hill gave a report that Bingo will be in the field house again and Clarke Stroud agreed to call again for the morning session. They formed the award committee to review nominations and select OSC winners. Their next meeting is Thursday, March 9 in OMU and we will have a guest speaker Taylor Mauldin with the Norman Convention and Visitors Bureau. This is also their meeting where they will recognize their award nominees. 


Awards Committee:  By email Chair Liz Cooley reported that they meet next week.

Communications Committee:  By email Chair Patricia Koonce reported that they did not meet.

Staff Initiatives Committee:  Chair Daveena Stratton reported that they met and discussed a rough draft proposal for the parental leave policy and received great response from the survey that was sent out to campus departments and programs. 

Staff Week Committee:  By email Co-Chair Cathy Brister reported that they met and voted to sell two t-shirts this year with two different designs, one in heather gray and the other in heather red.  The form for craft fair entries will go out this month and the health fair vendors will be contacted after checking out the venue.  Prize solicitation is going strong and the OU Staff Week website is being updated.


Employee Benefits Committee:  Debbie Copp reported the following:

I. HR Changes 
Breion left for a new job in December and there have been other changes. Positions for benefits assistant director and benefit analyst were posted to the job board. Angela Hawpe will serve as interim. Julius Hillburn has agreed to stay on as they work through transition issues.

II. Fringe Benefit Update
Have seen issues and many are what you expect to see when a group changes to a different provider (had been with BC/BS since 2009). Also are seeing some atypical ones. Working with employees and Cigna on those. HR is reacting to situations where the outcomes are different than expectations. This is our plan and we can and should have a plan that works. Self-funding gives us that negotiating power. We also are in an annual renewable contract. Suggested that HR send out a FAQ based on things they are hearing. Any concerns, please email them to

III. Wellness Update
All three campuses are now certified healthy campuses. Bringing back the full plate online program. Cost is $147 and if participant does everything, $100 incentive bonus will be earned. Did a new RFP for the standing desk program.

IV. Retirement Update
We will see changes in the communication we receive from Fidelity. New employees will have 30 days to make OTRS decision. Financial planning workshops are ongoing as well as financial wellness. Anticipate that one-year waiting period for new employees to start DCP.  Expect there will be a Regents’ agenda item on January Regents’ agenda relative to benefits.


The following reports were linked to the February agenda:

Staff Senate Foundation account report

Minutes of Employment Benefits Committee meeting for August 2016


Staff Senate Volunteer Opportunities: Emilie Bozek asked if any of the member groups talked about volunteering in their meetings. None of the member groups had additional feedback so Emilie is going to create a list of volunteer opportunities and will send it to the groups for them to sign up.



Matthew Rom asked if anyone is interested in serving on the selection committee for the Regents Award for Superior Performance.  He asked anyone interested to email the Staff Senate office.

Carl Sinclair reminded everyone that passwords must be changed by next Wednesday or you will be locked out of your account.


As there was no further business, the meeting adjourned at 2:36 p.m.


Respectfully submitted,
Melissa Lane
Administrative Coordinator

Emilie Bozek
Recording Secretary

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The University of Oklahoma Staff Senate, Norman Campus, 905 Asp, Norman, OK 73019 (405) 325-4672  | 
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