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Faculty Governance at the University of Florida Libraries

Minutes - December 12, 2005: 2:00-3:30pm

Room 349, J.W. Reitz Union

Cathy Martyniak convened the meeting by reviewing its structure. Although both the Faculty Senate review and preview and the library governance portions of the meeting have been led so far by the Senators, the Senators hope that after the January meeting, the governance portion of the meetings will be planned, led, and directed by elected members of the Faculty Assembly.

Faculty Senate Portion

Michele Tennant distributed minutes of the previous meeting, and they were reviewed. It was moved by Peter Bushnell that they be approved as read and the motion passed. Michele then announced that Amy Buhler gave birth to a daughter on Saturday.

Michele then gave an overview of the November Faculty Senate meeting.


Kim Tanzer, Senate Chair, reported without further detail that the University Libraries Committee and the Faculty Council on Infrastructure are working on a resolution to the issue of profit-sharing between the Libraries and the food service at Library West. Tanzer also reported that the Board of Trustees would meet December 1st and 2nd in Gainesville; and that the relationship between the Faculty Senate, Faculty Councils, and the United Faculty of Florida is being studied.

Provost Janie Fouke reported that an outside firm has been retained for the Director of Admissions search. She also announced that external reviews are being planned for 5 units within CLAS. (External reviews are common for accreditation in some fields, but have not been undertaken at CLAS for some time.) Individuals at the level of Dean and above will be given five-year contracts, and evaluated for the purposes of contract renewal during the fourth year. Fouke completed her report by saying that work on resolving PeopleSoft problems is ongoing.

Information Items:

Paul Robell reported on the progress of the Faculty Challenge, a program to provide endowments for faculty hiring (not an attempt to get faculty to invest in the endowment).

Numerous Constitution changes (some cosmetic, some substantive) were presented.

Action Items:

The Honorary Degrees Committee proposed giving an honorary doctorate in Engineering to Dr. J. Crayton Pruitt. The motion passed.

Proposed curriculum changes were approved.

Open discussion:

Remote voting for Senators via Web or email was discussed. Florida law does not allow for proxies, and some Senators find it difficult to attend meetings because they work in remote locations. Because the Senate is a deliberative body, and Web streaming of meetings does not allow two-way participation, remote voting seems impractical at this time.

Cathy Martyniak previewed the December Senate meeting. The usual reports will be given. There are information items regarding the academic calendar; a curriculum change to allow a Bachelor of Arts degree in Astronomy; and several Constitutional changes. There are no action items. Open discussion will conclude the meeting. A question regarding the non-purchase of our comments from the 2005 Faculty Survey will be asked either of Dr. Machen or during the open session at the end. (See first paragraph in Governance portion below for details.)

Library Governance Portion

Joe Aufmuth explained that the reason the comments are not available for the 2005 faculty survey is that they were not purchased by the University. The assembly urged the Senators to request that the comments be purchased if still available. (Again, here the UFF/Faculty Senate relationship may come into play - the union representing staff has blocked dissemination of the staff survey because it deals with working conditions.)

Joe Aufmuth and David Hickey reported on the Communications Committee meeting. They gave the Communications Committee a recap of the faculty governance process at the Libraries to date, and announced that there will be elections at the January Faculty Assembly to formalize the Faculty Governance Working Group into an actual representative body. Joe mentioned that Dale is very enthusiastic about the process and is looking forward to having an elected body that is representative of the Faculty to work with on various projects.

Joe told the Faculty Assembly about other matters discussed at the Communications Committee, including the paraprofessional classification study; the occupancy date for Library West; and space use studies and space policy issues for Library West and Library East.

Naomi Young then clarified that the Libraries did not file a merit pay compensation plan with the Ad Hoc Committee on Compensation, as had previously been reported. Discussion ensued on faculty representation; merit criteria; and the difference between merit criteria and merit pay criteria.

Rich Bennett concluded by presenting the work of the Distinction Committee. Although no formal motion was made, we determined that the members of the Assembly present agreed with the definition of "distinction" as arrived at by the committee.

Respectfully submitted,
Naomi Young
Senator, 2003/2004-2005/2006
Acting Secretary
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