February 15, 1999
UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS
SC.99.06, Report on Meeting of the Board of Trustees, November, 1998
The Board of Trustees held its November 1998 meeting on the Springfield campus on November 18 and 19, in the Public Affairs Building.
The November 18 meeting began with a Meeting of the Committee on Buildings and Grounds, chaired by Trustee William D. Engelbrecht.
Presentations by architects were given for three projects: the fire substation and parking garage; the indoor football practice field; and the south campus master plan. While all three generated comments by trustees, the fire substation was probably the most discussed. Concerns about the substation's position in relation to the Morrow Plots, the increased traffic on Gregory Drive, and the utilitarian design of the structure were voiced by trustees.
The trustees were assured that the substation's location had been reviewed by appropriate ACES faculty, that historical and preservation concerns were addressed, and that there would be reduced traffic to the parking structure part of the substation during most hours. Some consideration was being given to closing Gregory Drive in that area from 7 a.m.-6 p.m. except for bus service and traffic heading to the parking structure.
Most trustees were resigned to the utilitarian aspect of the structure. There was some concern about using this particular space for parking rather than for academic buildings. Since this was an informational session only, and approval is being sought at the January meeting, the Board will be given information at that meeting about the alternative sites considered and the reasons they were rejected.
The indoor football practice field was discussed at some length. It will be used at times other than those needed by the football team for other sports activities. Its completion is projected for late fall 2000. The preliminary proposal for use of the south campus was presented for information only. The Board will be presented with additional information at future meetings.
The Board Meeting then convened in Executive Session at 2:30 p.m.
On November 19, at 8:30 a.m. a Public Comment Session was held during which UIUC student Charles Allen presented an appeal to make a vision care plan available to graduate student employees.
UIS Senate Chair Frank Kopecky then gave a report on activities of the Springfield Senate. The main issue that was probed by trustees was the review of academic programs for possible elimination. Professor Kopecky assured the trustees that while this was an often painful and difficult process, any faculty whose programs were being eliminated would be moved to other programs in relevant areas.
Vice President Manning provided an overview of tuition and fee recommendations for FY 2000. Questions that were brought forward by trustees related to the impact of the "living and learning" communities at UIUC, and the accountability for any fee increases approved by the trustees. There was some concern regarding adequate student input into the fee recommendations. UIUC Vice Chancellor Askew responded to the positive impact of the living and learning residential facilities. Trustees were also assured that students had opportunities to respond to fee increase proposals.
The Committee on Hospital and Clinics was convened at 9:30 by Trustee Roger L. Plummer. An extensive presentation by UIC campus administrative staff was provided, as is required quarterly. The focus of the presentation was on operations, earnings, and expenditures.
After a brief break, UIS Chancellor Lynn presented a report on the Institute for Public Affairs. The video presentation and accompanying report by the Director of the Institute were well received by the trustees.
President Stukel provided his report, which included positive activities from each of the three campuses. His staff provided reports on relevant federal activity and procurement issues within the state of Illinois. As part of his "good news" reporting, President Stukel indicated that the University has a very high number of alumni from all three campuses who are involved in the Peace Corps.
Trustee Gravenhorst, Chair of the Board, announced that President Stukel recently received an award for thirty years of service to the University of Illinois. She also reported on her attendance at an October meeting of the Council of the Association of Governing Boards.
There was no old business. As part of new business each of the student trustees reported on activities at the respective campuses.
As part of the regular agenda, there was some discussion of item 7, reinstatement of a student government fee at UIUC. Trustees were concerned again about adequate mechanisms for student input, but were assured by the UIUC student trustee that multiple mechanisms had been used to publicize the proposed fee and its rationale.
This discussion was followed by the Roll Call votes. With the exception of item 7, mentioned above, all items voted upon were passed unanimously. In the case of item 7, Trustee Reese voted "present" but the item was passed with positive votes by all other trustees. Item 13, Intergovernmental Cooperation Agreements between UIUC and other governmental agencies for road improvements, was commended by Trustee Lamont for its cooperative and collaborative approach to resolving traffic and transportation issues.
It was announced that the next meeting of the Board will take place in Chicago on January 20 and 21, and that the Board will meet in Urbana on March 3 and 4. The meeting then adjourned.
It should be noted that this was a very smooth and efficiently run meeting, with most sessions ending earlier than scheduled.
Nancy P. O'Brien
Observer for the Urbana-Champaign Campus Senate