Wednesday October 16, 2013



Chair Amanda Pai called the meeting to order at 1:33 p.m. in the Scholars Room of the Oklahoma Memorial Union.


Officers present – Amanda Pai, Chair; John Bishop, Chair-Elect; Chris Cook, Immediate Past Chair; Cecilia McEwen, Recording Secretary


Staff present – Melissa Lane, Administrative Coordinator


Representatives present – Hourly Employees Council: David Houck, Eric Grubbs, Carolyn Taylor, Karen Stark, Tim Winkelman, Kim Haddad, Andrew Bartlett, Syndy Petross, Carmen Eppler; Informational Staff Association: Bruce Alcock, Debbie Copp, Elaine Bradshaw, Shane Smith; Organizational Staff Council: Cathy Yeaman, Jackie Downing, Betty Love, Debbie Reddell; Administrative Staff Council: SueAnna Miller


Representatives absent — Hourly Employees Council: Suzie Brewer, Vicki Pollock; Informational Staff Association: Kendall George, Debbie Gentis; Organizational Staff Council: Justin Daniels, Reta Tarver Administrative Staff Council: Nick Key,


Guests present — Dan Hough, Les Hoven, Sarah Millsap, Debbie Skeel, Jeralyn Woodall, Stacy Powell, and Lezlie Marsh




Nick Kelly and Angela Hawpe, Human Resources


ACCEPTANCE OF MINUTES OF July 17, 2013 and September 18, 2013


On motion by David Houck, the minutes of the June 17, 2013 and the minutes of the September 18, 2013, Staff Senate meeting were accepted.




Amanda did not meet with Nick Hathaway, Vice President for Executive and Administrative Affairs.  Members of the Executive Committee met with HR last week. They shared details about the 2014 renewal and plan to form a new working committee to explore the future of OU’s health benefits. The Faculty Senate is coordinating a “meet & greet” for all 3 University governance organizations next week and all the officers will be representing the Staff Senate.




Administrative Staff Council:  Vice President Sue Anna Miller said they met and the group was offered a sneak peek at the ONE U store. Some took advantage of sale prices in advance of the grand opening sale. They discussed the proposed policy change that would allow time off for volunteer work and blood donation. The group was in favor with some questions for clarification. Finally, the group brainstormed ideas for meetings that would help them reach their goal of connecting the dots between the big initiatives on campus. They are planning the October meeting for next week, hopefully at the Men's Basketball practice facility.


Hourly Employees Council:  President David Houck reported that Claire Rodriguez, a representative to the Staff Initiatives Committee was the special guest. They discussed the matter of employees being forbidden to accrue comp time and it was also brought to their attention by another member that in certain departments employees are compelled to work extra hours and take the time off straight hour for hour at a later date.  They discussed the Christmas project and decided to hold another prize drawing with multiple prizes. They will begin selling tickets after their November meeting and the prizes will be announced then.


Informational Staff Association:  Chair Bruce Alcock reported that the group’s first order of business was to elect officers and representatives. They talked about having a representative from HR at the November meeting since that will be before open enrollment ends.  Nick Kelly has agreed to come to our next meeting. They are also looking at getting HR representation at other meetings as well.  They talked about other meeting locations, such as Headington Hall, Fred Jones Art Museum and Sam Noble Museum of Natural History.  They are also looking at guest speakers, the aim for this year it to increase attendance from their membership.  They talked about the Staff Initiative Committee's proposed Blood Donation/Volunteerism Policy and we voted to support the proposal.

Organizational Staff Council:  Chair Cathy Yeaman reported that they continued discussion whether to move the bank account from OU Federal Credit Union to a foundation.  Fund raising options were presented by Betty Love and Sheila Vercher followed by discussion of the options.  Amanda Pai asked everyone for their continued support of United Way and encouraged everyone to donate blood with Oklahoma Blood Institute and specify the Bedlam Blood Drive so OU can win this year. 




Awards Committee:  By email Chair Liz Cooley reported that the Awards Ceremony will be April 22, 2014.  Committee chose sub-committee chairs, went over the budget and completed their budget, and reviewed the task timeline for the committee.


Communications Committee:  By email Chair Gina Powell reported that they met by email to work on the newsletter to highlight the Staff Senate Member Groups.


Staff Initiatives Committee:  Chair Dan Hough reported that they distributed answers from HR concerning leave during holiday break and age for contributions to retirement plans.  The report on the holiday break issue response from HR was: In general, employees may not elect on their own to work on approved holidays.  However, supervisors do have the ability to establish and change work schedules as necessary.  There are limited cases where this would be appropriate during a holiday.   One would be when business operations necessitate that an employee be scheduled to work.  Another would be if the employee is designated as "Essential Personnel" required to work during the Holiday.  Here is HR's reply to the age for retirement contribution issue:  Human Resources is currently analyzing the eligibility policies in the Defined Contribution Plan, including the one which excludes hourly employees under age 28 without three years of service from participation. The analysis will include an examination of the policies of similar institutions and local employers, cost, and the impact on recruiting.


Staff Week Committee:  Co-Chair Jessie Tate reported by email that they will not be doing a fall fundraiser this year; instead they will be brainstorming for an item they can sell during Staff Week in April.

Part of the proceeds from this item will be donated to a local charity.  So far they have had over 40 submissions for the 2014 Staff Week theme.




Employee Benefits Committee:  Debbie Copp reported that they discussed: I. Affordable Care Act / 2014 Open Enrollment, they spent the majority of the meeting reviewing and giving feedback on the PowerPoint presentation that HR staff had put together to use in the weeks ahead as they travel to faculty and staff governance groups. These presentations will be made prior to the start of open enrollment Oct. 28 – Nov. 8. The staff also shared the dates of the benefits fairs for the three campuses.  II. Strategic Plan, they spent time discussing how the Strategic Plan discussion will be set up and what it will cover in very general terms. This is still a work in progress and more information will be coming.




The following reports were linked to the October agenda:


Staff Senate Foundation account report


Minutes of Employment Benefits Committee meeting for May 2013




Staff Initiatives Committee Blood Donation Proposal: ISA and ASC approved and supported, the remaining group HEC still need to discuss and report at the November meeting.






Remember to make your donation to United Way.




As there was no further business, the meeting adjourned at 2:17 p.m.


NEXT REGULAR MEETING:  November 20, 2013


Respectfully submitted,


Melissa Lane

Administrative Coordinator


Cecilia McEwen

Recording Secretary