Meeting on July 23,1998
HOUSTON COMMUNITY COLLEGE SYSTEM
REGULAR MEETING OF
THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES
July 23, 1998
The Board of Trustees of the Houston Community College System held a Regular Meeting on July
23,1998, at the HCCS Central Administrative Center, 22 Waugh Drive, Houston, Texas.
BOARD MEMBERS PRESENT
M. James Henderson, Chairman
John Fonteno, Jr., Secretary
Carol H. Smith, Deputy Secretary
Bruce A. Austin
James R. Murphy
W. F. Russell
BOARD MEMBERS ABSENT
Christopher W. Oliver, Vice-Chairman
Ruth Burgos-Sasscer, Chancellor
Elaine Adams, Vice-Chancellor, Educational Development
Sue Cox, President,
Jack Daniels, President, HCC-Central
Patricia Fairchild, Vice-Chancellor, Workforce Development
Margaret Forde, President, HCC-Northeast
Zachary Hodges, President, HCC-Northwest
Sylvia Ramos, President, HCC-Southeast
Diana M. Taylor, Chief Operations Officer
Patricia Williamson, Vice-Chancellor,Institutional Development
Arturo Michel, Bracewell and Patterson
Other administrators, staff, representatives of the news media and interested citizens
CALL TO ORDER
Mr. Henderson called the Meeting to order at 4:20 p.m. and declared the Board convened to consider file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (1 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
Meeting on July 23,1998 matters pertaining to the Houston Community College System as listed on the duly-posted meeting notice.
PRESENTATION OF PROPOSED BUDGET FOR 1998-99
Diana Morales Taylor reviewed highlights of the $132 million proposed budget. The budget is based on revenues that include an increase of 4% in ad valorem taxes resulting from property valuation increases;
$1.2 million in technology fees initiated Spring 1998; 1.5% increase in total collections of tuition and fees; and no change in state appropriations since this is the second year of the biennium.
On the expenditure side, the budget remains level except for $3.2 million in debt service for the purchase of the Incredible Universe; an average 4% or $2.78 million for faculty and non-faculty salary increases;
$1.1 million increase in the Information Technology operations budget, related to new positions; and a
$1.8 million reduction in facilities rentals and major renovations. This budget does not include funding for capital items.
Capital expenditures funded from the fund balance include items over $25,000 and will be brought to the
Board for approval as the funds are incurred and can be matched to the fund balance. Trustees Austin and Murphy asked questions regarding the fund balance. Ms. Taylor explained that the unexpended plant fund has $14 million net, minus restrictions or set-asides of $2.2 million for the Highway 288 property and $1.8 million for renovations at the Incredible Universe. Mr. Austin asked for an explanation of the $2.2 million for the Highway 288 property. Ms. Taylor answered this was seed money. The purchase of property is in investment and plant fund. The unexpended plant fund is money set aside for other initiatives relating to capital budgeting. The $2.2 million is a set-aside for seed money for the 288 property. The $1.8 million relates to the Incredible Universe renovations.
Mr. Murphy noted the Incredible Universe budget of $5.2 million and the administration building renovations of $1.9 million and asked if those were further encumbrances of the $14 million. Mr. Austin thought it had been made clear that the Board wanted a total feasibility, hydrology, soil analysis and total assessment of the Highway 288 property before beginning construction. He added that a facility in that area is overdue because of population count.
Ms. Taylor explained that $42 million in unrestricted funds and the $14 million unexpended plant fund add up to $56 million. By the end of the year it is anticipated that $13 million will be used. Mr. Murphy asked if we are reserving the Incredible Universe and administration building renovations out of the $56 million, and Ms. Taylor replied that was correct. The $13 million unrestricted is our excess of revenues over expenses for the current year. Some of those dollars will be expended this year. We will end up with approximately $43 million in the fund balance and $6 million of that is proposed to fund capital projects this year. Mr. Henderson observed that those requests will come to the Board.
Mr. Russell asked if there was a policy that we do not expend anything out of unrestricted that is an ongoing expense. Ms. Taylor replied that was correct. Mr. Austin noted that the Board would decide how much of the fund balance would be moved into the plant fund. Mr. Henderson added that if the file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (2 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
Meeting on July 23,1998 unrestricted balance begins to grow beyond an acceptable amount to have in reserve, the Board might choose to move it into an undesignated fund.
Mr. Murphy wanted to know what our reserves should be and Ms. Taylor replied she has done research for the work groups. Most ISDs try to maintain 6% and Harris County maintains 10% of their annual operating budget. She recalled that the Board previously agreed that two months salary would be an appropriate amount to maintain in the fund balance, and this would represent about $18 million.
Mrs. Garcia asked if allocations for the colleges were to be approved today, noting that nothing was allocated to Southeast. Ms. Taylor replied no, this was proposed in the April budget workshop.
Administration presented the capital items and the operating budget, and the budget has not changed except for some minor adjustments. For example, Northeast and Southeast Colleges show large amounts to be expended in the construction of new campuses and that money is in the construction and debt service fund. Southwest College shows an increase relating to the Incredible Universe and Stafford projects. Northwest College has some equipment needs, and the rest of the items are related to construction and renovation
Mrs. Garcia stated she did not attend the budget workshop. However, she voiced concern that Southeast
College might need additional money beyond what has been appropriated for the expansion of the
Eastside campus. She asked if the budget was flexible and if administration had checked with the
Southeast architects regarding costs. She noted this was important because we are appropriating an extra
$6 million for some colleges and asked if it would be possible to move these funds to Southeast if the need arose. As architects move forward it is sometimes necessary to change specifications due to emergencies or other needs and she wanted assurance that the Board had the flexibility to move money to Southeast College.
Dr. Burgos-Sasscer responded that the Presidents prepared the college budgets and made these requests.
Mr. Henderson noted there is a list of projects that are known and anticipated to occur during this fiscal year. However, each of them will come before the Board for approval at the time the project is implemented. Therefore, if other projects occur that were not anticipated, there is always the opportunity for those to come to the Board for review and approval and the appropriation of funds. Dr. Burgos-
Sasscer concurred with his explanation.
Mrs. Garcia indicated she just wanted to confirm that the Board that flexibility, because we tend to be firm with construction projects. She stressed that this comes back to the issue of equity for all the colleges.
Mr. Austin commended the budget-writers for a good job. However, he was concerned that attention to the Highway 288 property has seemed to wane recently. Dr. Burgos-Sasscer stated this was not correct.
This project is under the authority of Dr. Jack Daniels, President of Central College, and is proceeding.
Dr. Burgos-Sasscer stated that she would have Dr. Daniels provide Mr. Austin with a status report on the
Highway 288 project, to address his concerns regarding wells and environmental issues. Mr. Austin file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (3 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
Meeting on July 23,1998 added he hoped to get the College access to county property in that area.
Mrs. Garcia asked to see the final recommendations for the Incredible Universe project, adding she does not want this project to continue to be brought to the Board for additional funding, and has talked with
Dr. Burgos-Sasscer about her concerns. She asked Ms. Taylor if she felt comfortable with funds which have been appropriated for the Southwest College. Ms. Taylor responded that these are very finite, absolute numbers and the architects are aware of this. Regarding the Southeast construction, the proposed contractor's numbers came in $700,000 below estimated cost. Mrs. Garcia noted that estimates can sometimes change. Ms. Taylor stated the Incredible Universe renovation will cost $5.2 million and includes structural engineering, mechanical engineering, build-out, and all equipment to be purchased.
Mrs. Garcia remarked that she has always been a supporter of Southwest College and what has been accomplished there, but wanted to make sure that equity among colleges is maintained . She cautioned she would be keeping a close eye on the Incredible Universe renovation in terms of the distribution of funds. Dr. Burgos-Sasscer noted we are building out only 60,00 square feet, so eventually there will be a need for additional build-out. Mrs. Garcia stated that such a large investment in such a short time seemed incredible, since it took eight years to appropriate funds for the Southeast and Northeast
Colleges for construction projects.
Mr. Austin recalled that in a prior meeting, the Board reviewed needs for Northeast and Southeast
Colleges, the Highway 288 property, and Northwest College , and had agreed on a strategy for developing the colleges. He felt we should stay with this strategy. He urged that we look at a phased plan for facilities, and stay apprised of HISD's efforts at revenue enhancement.
Mr. Austin recalled the Board had previously requested that a communications plan be addressed at this meeting to accompany any revenue enhancement measures. Mrs. Garcia remarked that she has done research and has talked with Dr. Burgos-Sasscer regarding faculty salaries and how they compare with other colleges. She noted that even smaller colleges such as Lee and San Jacinto offer higher salaries, starting at the Bachelor's level. She recalled that the Board mandated two years ago that it was time that
HCCS faculty salaries become competitive. She further noted that faculty numbers are about 50-50 in terms of full-time and part-time faculty, with the goal of increasing full-time instructors. She urged that we keep a close eye on salaries, in light of capital expansion and a small budget. She commented that she wanted to ensure that the issue of faculty salaries is addressed, even if cuts need to be made elsewhere in the budget. She stressed that HCCS needs to reach a competitive salary level soon. Mr.
Austin voiced agreement.
Mr. Russell stated he thought there was a five-year plan for faculty salary increases. Mrs. Garcia commented that a chart or other appropriate follow -up was need in order for the Board to see what type of progress is being made. Mr. Murphy asked if we are on target with salaries.
Ms. Taylor explained that HCCS has consistently been below market, especially at the Master's level and above. Salaries at the Bachelor's level have been at market or above with our peer institutions -- the file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (4 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
Meeting on July 23,1998 other seven community colleges in Texas with more than 10,000 FTE.
Mrs. Garcia asked where we stand today, where we are going, and how long will it take, because the
Board needs to represent the faculty well. Ms. Taylor answered that three years ago we were 13% below market. Since then we have given increases of 5% for the prior year, 4% last year and a proposed average of 4% this year. We are presently about 4% below market.
Mrs. Garcia asked what an instructor with a Bachelor's degree would make at HCCS. Mrs. Taylor replied about $26-27,000. Mrs. Garcia noted that meant that in comparison to the other institutions in the
Gulf Coast Consortium we have a long way to go. She urged that before a budget is adopted, this matter should be reviewed. Mr. Austin cautioned that other institutions will attract qualified instructors away, because they can pay them more. Administration was asked to provide a response indicating benchmarks, so the Board can understand how much further we need to go to reach the optimal level in faculty salaries. Mrs. Garcia agreed we must keep faculty in mind because instructors and students are our priority.
Mr. Murphy noted that we have approximately $2.1 million in unexpended funds from last year. If those funds become part of the fund balance to be used for operating costs, we will have to come up with another $2.1 million on the capital side and another $6 million for program money next year, so we may be painting ourselves into a corner. He expressed concern about where this would lead.
Mr. Austin felt this is where good business practices must be put to work. He felt we need a better pro forma on where we need to go from this point on and what that will do to a construction budget or debt service, so that we have those estimates; and in a projected year, how much money will be spent for the next three years if revenues remain constant. Mr. Murphy stated we could do some educated guessing.
For example, as new facilities are built, we pay less in rent; however, it is difficult to quantify which facilities will be vacated and the projected savings.
Mr. Russell noted that, unfortunately, we are caught in the transition, because we are still paying rent, we cant afford to move until a new facility is built, but you still have the debt service for the money that was borrowed.
Another concern, according to Mr. Austin, is that HISD gave us the same cost for less space. Mr.
Murphy noted that the Facilities Committee is addressing the larger issues such as class size, teacher load and those issue we must look at as we reposition ourselves, and paying faculty at a competitive rate is an important issue. Mr. Austin felt that performance criteria should be connected with pay and has spoken many time about doing marketing analyses. With contract training you are dealing with enterprise funds and you need to operate like a business.
Mr. Russell returned to discussion of the $6 million, noting that the Board had previously agreed to take the Information Technology budget out of the fund balance because of the need to upgrade technology, and this was a tremendous amount of money. Mr. Austin repeated that a pro-forma is badly needed and file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (5 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
Meeting on July 23,1998 hopefully, administration will guide the work groups in this direction.
HEARING OF CITIZENS REGARDING ADOPTION OF PROPOSED BUDGET AND OTHER
Mr. Henderson gave preface to the Hearing of Citizens regarding adoption of the proposed budget and other matters. a. Linda Comte , outgoing president of the Faculty Association expressed appreciation to the Board for a productive year from the standpoint of faculty. Faculty involvement in decision-making has been increased. The Association participated in the Discipline Committee taskforce to address concerns and announced that a proposal has been developed. The Sabbatical Leave Committee will also propose some policy revisions. The Association has also reviewed salary compensation for performance-based work and a proposal will be developed. Ms. Comte expressed appreciation to the Board for it's support, their visibility at various college functions, support of the 360degree evaluation process, and the decision to move out of the public schools into new facilities.
Lastly, she applauded the Board's decision to work on the policies and procedures manual and looks forward to faculty participation in this effort.
b. Robert Robinson , addressed the Board on behalf of the Houston Area Plumbers Joint
Apprenticeship Committee, in regard to an administrative decision to establish minimum fees for short-term classes at $50.00. Traditionally, short classes of 3-10 hours are state requirements for plumbers apprentices and licensed journeyman plumbers, and pertain to license renewal. The other trades parallel the plumbers in terms of classes that are mandatory by state law. The current fee has traditionally been waived and they pay by contact hour. The Plumbers anticipate over
1,800 students taking an average of 6 hours, meaning that the College would recoup approximately $60,000 from the Coordinating Board. If the fee is raised to $50.00 per student, regardless of the hours attended, it would not be feasible for the trade organizations to continue registering students. They would most likely establish their own fee and pay their instructors.
c. Dee Powell , Training Director for the Houston Electrical Joint Apprenticeship Committee, stated they have been affiliated with HCCS since it's inception and were honored at the HCCS 25th
Anniversary Gala as a partner in education. They are proud of this association and hope it continues. He explained that the apprenticeship program is a structured training program that encompasses on-the-job training and related classroom training. The electrical program requires five years of training. Apprentices must work 8,000 hours on the job and perform 800 hours related classroom training. After training is completed, they become employed by one of the sponsoring contractors and becoming taxpayers. They also do journeyman upgrade training for continuing education and these classes are required by law. The program registers all classes at
$.55 per contact hour. One of the proposals pending is to eliminate the facility use fee waiver.
The System has eliminated the facility use fee; however, Mr. Powell explained that they have their own facilities, campuses, instructors, administrators and office staff. They do not use HCCS classrooms, and are a small, if any, financial burden. Although instructors are paid through
HCCS, they are paid from a budget that is generated through contact hours. Mr. Powell requested file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (6 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
Meeting on July 23,1998 that the facility use waiver not be eliminated and allow them to continue paying the $.55 per contact hour, instead of $.75 as proposed. d. Steve Dement , Houston Area Pipefitters Apprenticeship Program Coordinator, explained there is a proposal before City Council to use registered apprentices in their construction projects. He encouraged HCCS to do the same through the skilled crafts and trades that are trained in the apprenticeship programs and implement apprenticeship utilization in college construction projects. He felt this would solve many budgeting problems by utilizing skilled craftsmen. The apprenticeship trades have had a long relationship with HCCS and he would like to see it continue. However, he noted they must consider other options when things come up which effect their programs.
Mr. Austin asked administration to note the comments made, given the fact that the System is heavily into workforce development.
TRUCK DRIVER TRAINING CENTER NAMED IN HONOR OF ROLAND W. SMITH,
FORMER HCCS TRUSTEE FROM DISTRICT I
Motion No. 803 - Mr. Austin moved approval of the naming of the Truck Driver Training Center, to be located in the HCC-Northeast Educational Complex, in honor of the late Roland W. Smith, former
HCCS Trustee from District I. Mr. Davila seconded the motion. Motion carried 8-0.
PRESENTATION OF RESOLUTION TO THE FAMILY OF ROLAND W. SMITH
Mr. Davila thanked Mr. Austin for appointing him as Chairman of the subcommittee to name the Center;
Dr. Margaret Forde, for providing the meeting space at the Northline Mall Center, and the subcommittee members for their time and effort. The subcommittee met initially in March and decided that flyers should be sent out to members of the community and the HCCS staff for their input in naming this facility. Nominations were reviewed and the subcommittee agreed to recommend Mr. Smith.
Mr. Davila introduced Manuel Barrera, subcommittee member, who presented a Resolution acknowledging the naming of the Truck Driver Training Center to Mr. Smith's family, which included wife and Trustee Carol H. Smith, father L. O. Smith and brother Leland Smith. Other members of the subcommittee present were Dottie Watthuber, J. S. Gray and John Poore.
Mrs. Smith thanked the members of the subcommittee and remarked that Mr. Smith was a native
Houstonian and loved the city very much. He felt his work on the HCCS Board of Trustees was a way to give something back to the city and the citizens of Houston. She noted he was a strong proponent of workforce training and would have been proud of the truck driver program which is one of the most successful programs and shows how the College can contribute to workforce development.
Mr. Davila presented Certificates of Recognition to the members of the subcommittee, and was himself presented with a Certificate from Mr. Austin. Mr. Davila acknowledged the other members of the subcommittee who were unable to attend including Candy Perez, Yolanda Navarro Flores, Lucy file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (7 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
Meeting on July 23,1998
Manjaras and Mr. and Mrs. Joe Padilla. Mr. Austin commended Mr. Davila on the success of this subcommittee and for an inclusive process.
PRESENTATION FROM HARRY GOLEMON, ARCHITECT
Architect Harry Golemon presented a master plan of the Northeast Educational Complex, showing the location of the Trick Driver Training Center. The entire Northeast complex is 66 acres. Construction will begin within 30 - 45 days and will be completed in 6 - 8 months. The facility will include a driving track, administration building, and skid area. Mr. Golemon commented this will be one of the premier truck driver schools in the country.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Motion No. 804 - Mr. Murphy moved approval of the minutes as submitted from the Regular Board
Meeting of June 25, 1998. Mr. Davila seconded the motion. Motion carried 8-0.
APPROVAL OF CONSENT AGENDA
Motion No. 805 - Mr. Murphy moved approval of the consent agenda, with the exception of certain items set aside for discussion or consideration following executive session. Mr. Russell seconded the motion. Motion carried 8-0. The following items were approved:
I. Instructional Programs
● Approved affiliation agreements with various service providers for the clinical education of students in Health Careers Programs, Southeast College, including Gulf Coast Regional
Blood Center, The Medicine Shoppe, Harris County Hospital District, Healix Infusion
Therapy, New Directions Club, and Better Life Programs - Carol Smith Center;
II. Purchasing of Materials and Services
● Awarded a contract for the printing of the 1998-99 HCCS Student Handbook to Rich
Printing Company, Inc.;
● Awarded a contract for the printing of the HCCS Class Schedules for 1998-99 to Greater
Houston Publishers, Inc.;
Approved a contract for private 9-1-1 services with the Greater Harris County 9-1-1
Emergency Network and Southwestern Bell;
Approved the purchase of fall registration electronic media advertising, to be paid out of existing funds. The media buy will be purchased by Marrot Communications and is scheduled to run in early August, 1998;
Approved the purchase of training books and materials for the Plumbing Apprenticeship file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (8 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
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Program from the National Joint Steamfitter and Pipefitter Apprenticeship Committee;
● Approved the purchase of training books and materials for the Independent Electrical
Contractors Apprenticeship Program, Central College, from the Independent Electrical
● Approved payment to Bracewell and Patterson for professional services rendered for the period May 16 through June 15, 1998;
III. Leases or Construction of Facilities
Approved Marshal Construction Company as General Contractor/Construction Manager for the new Eastside Campus expansion project (Angel J. Morales Building), Southeast
College and authorized the Chancellor to execute the proposed contract subject to final review and revision by legal counsel;
IV. Fiscal Matters
Approved the proposed 1998-99 budget for current unrestricted funds in the amount of
Accepted the investment report for the month of June, 1998; and
Approved revisions to HCCS Policy DI (Local), Assignments and Schedules, regarding acting and interim positions.
PURCHASE OF MCAFEE TOTAL SERVICE DESK SUITE SOFTWARE APPROVED
Motion No. 806 - Mr. Davila moved approval of the purchase of Network Associate's McAfee Total
Service Desk Suite software, to include unlimited site licensing, maintenance and support for the period
August 1, 1998 - July 31, 2000, and a one-time cost of professional services for installation and deployment of the software.
Mr. Murphy seconded the motion.
Mr. Fonteno requested clarification of this item and asked where the software would be installed. Jim
Vasquez, Executive Director of Information Technology, explained this is a comprehensive solution to problems regarding the tracking of hardware and software and installation. This software will automate the tracking of hardware and has a built-in security system. It will also meter and track software distribution around the System, saving on manpower and potential legal costs. Every PC in the System will report to this system and receive software from it. file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (9 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
Meeting on July 23,1998
Mr. Fonteno asked if we had problems with computer outages due to bad weather. Mr. Vasquez stated this is always a problem; however, back-up systems are in place so there is very little detrimental impact.
Mr. Austin w anted to know if we had any economies of scale in terms of license agreements. Mr.
Vasquez responded that economies of scale on software varies from company to company, depending on the number of licenses. The Technical Architecture Committee reviews standards and looks at each license to determine if an economy of scale can be utilized in purchases. With no further discussion, the motion carried 8-0.
AGREEMENT WITH SPRING BRANCH ISD RENEWED FOR THE WESTCHESTER
Motion No. 807 - Mr. Austin moved approval of the renewal of the agreement with Spring Branch ISD for use of the Westchester Education Center, through May 31, 1999. Mr. Davila seconded the motion.
Mrs. Garcia stated she had discussed this item with the Chancellor and called attention to a letter received by the Board on April 21, 1997, regarding negotiations with the Spring Branch ISD. At that time, HCCS was pursuing the branch campus concept with Spring Branch, along with several other options. Mrs. Garcia noted this matter was previously discussed in a Board retreat and that Spring
Branch ISD has been given every opportunity to cooperate with HCCS. In her opinion, SBISD is the only party benefiting from this arrangement. She stated administration has had three years to locate an alternative site and should have moved much sooner. She recalled that Milby, Austin and other schools were vacated quickly and alternate sites located. She wanted to know how much longer we are going to continue the lease. Although HCCS appreciates the relationship with SBISD, this is business and it is time to vacate. In her opinion, this should be the last time the Board has to discuss this matter and if the agreement is renewed, it should be for a specified amount of time with a cancellation clause.
As she has discussed with Dr. Burgos-Sasscer, this brings up the issue of equity. In her opinion, SBISD has been uncooperative and has not considered the negative impact on students if the lease is not continued. She stated that she understood the urgency of the situation and the Board needed to reach consensus this issue. She stated that she did not believe the Board was giving the matter enough attention. She remarked that the majority of students attending Westchester Center are not from the
HCCS tax base and that particular area does not serve minorities or constituents of Spring Branch that need educational services. Had SBISD been in favor of a branch campus, we would have seen growth in enrollment. She then asked the opinions of other Board Members.
Mr. Russell commented that the Westchester Center is different from the HISD schools, because HCCS classes are sectioned off in one wing. He agreed we have been left hanging, thinking SBISD was going to take action and they did not. Mrs. Garcia stated she felt this would continue to happen unless the
Board took a strong stand and recommend vacating the facility. file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (10 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
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Mr. Murphy agreed we need a permanent solution to this problem. This is a crisis situation, since one year is not sufficient time to build a facility. He pointed out, however, that as leases go, Westchester is not a bad deal given the amount of space we occupy. He stated that most students who attend
Westchester are actually in-district students. He added this facility serves a lot of people and we need to locate a facility that is better than what we have. Mrs. Garcia asked if Mr. Murphy had statistics on enrollment. Mr. Murphy replied that enrollment was a little over half in-district. President Hodges added that Westchester has the second largest science program in Houston. Mr. Murphy noted that Cy-Fair sends many students there as well.
In Mrs. Garcia's opinion, we are working too comfortably with SBISD and not assuming the responsibility of vacating and finding another solution. She felt that SBISD representatives have not cooperated with HCCS and it is now time to take action. She requested that Mr. Henderson work with the Chancellor to seek a solution to the Westchester situation.
Mr. Austin felt we must send a consistent message, since one of the problems in the negotiations is that we have not clearly defined responsibilities of the System and colleges. There should be certain decisions handled at the System-level and others that are handled locally by the colleges. In his opinion, one consistent voice should emanate from the System, with implementation as delegated. Mr. Russell felt we have negotiated in good faith and offered the branch campus as a solution. He noted we were hampered by the enrollment cap; however, SBISD representatives never really gave us an answer and now they want the facility back because of burgeoning enrollment. He agreed we need to move forward in finding a solution.
Mrs. Garcia recalled a previous retreat in which the Board discussed out-of-district issues and agreed that SBISD should be given a strong message of our intent to vacate. The Chancellor stated that the
Facilities Committee is looking at an alternative to build a facility on the far west side inside the HCCS
District. She pointed out that much has changed in the last three years including negotiations for the branch campus and the problem of the enrollment cap. Also, at that time there was an active committee in Spring Branch looking at annexation and these issues had to be conveyed and brought together.
Mrs. Garcia stated that the Board's proposed timeline for action was May 1, 1997 to January 1998, and this should have been observed. She did not feel we could make any more allowances for Spring Branch and that this was a political decision. Mrs. Garcia recommended that we move forward in finding an alternative immediately and not allow SBISD to continue this lease for two more years. Since at this point there is not time to build, we should pursue another alternative. She added that if the matter comes up again, she will propose a stronger solution.
Dr. Burgos-Sasscer stated we are looking at an alternative for leasing a facility, because even if money were available, we could not build a facility by May. However, she noted this is one of our strongest programs and in a base year, we cannot afford to lose students. She affirmed that the message to Spring
Branch will be that we will make no more deals and we will call the shots from now on. file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (11 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
Meeting on July 23,1998
Mr. Austin remarked that we need to review strategies for dealing with out-of-district issues as discussed in an earlier meeting, and that we need a first-phase campus at the Hwy. 288 site, as well as in the
Northwest area. He added he has been on the Board a long time and knows how long it has taken to get this far. He felt this can be done equitably, but we must be fair and just in the process. He believes the
Chancellor is doing her best; however, he noted the Board has heard promises and seen a lot of things ignored. He stated the Board wants to do the right thing and asked the Chancellor to take his comments into consideration.
Mrs. Garcia stated the administration has been aware of the situation for a long time and this is a very political issue. She called attention to the letter presented earlier, noting that the timeline was not met.
She added that administration should not place the Board in the position of having to continually address a matter -- it should be resolved.
(Mr. Henderson relinquished the chair to Mr. Fonteno) He stated he had witnessed good faith negotiations with SBISD and had attended several meetings to present HCCS position. Representatives from SBISD listened, but probably did not have any intention of dealing in good faith. He felt we have been taken advantage of and we have to move forward to take care of the students and adopt a resolution of intent to vacate. (Mr. Henderson reclaimed the chair)
Mr. Murphy noted this was a very emotional issue; however, since it is impossible to build in so short a timeframe, the most economical option may be to stay in Spring Branch for the interim. We must do what is best for the students.
Mrs. Garcia stated that administration must locate an alternative facility as they have done for other vacated premises. At this time she did not feel we could discuss constructions because of the limited budget. She remarked that Westchester does not serve minority students. She cautioned that if she did not receive follow-up in two months, she would meet with the Chairman of the Board to strategize with the Facilities Committee on how to respond to Spring Branch ISD. She noted that whenever an issue is inequitable or unclear it becomes emotional, and we have known what is inequitable for too many years.
Mr. Russell stated he felt Mrs. Garcia was on the wrong side of the issue. We need a plan to do something with Spring Branch, however, in looking for an alternative solution we may need more time than May 31, 1999. Mrs. Garcia stated she understood that, but administration has had three years to take action. Mr. Russell noted that sometimes transitions are difficult and we need to find an alternative site or property, in light of a limited budget. Mr. Austin felt that assumptions and recommendations should be based on solid research and data collection, and did not feel this had been done. He added he has faith in Dr. Burgos-Sasscer's ability to present information to the Board in such a way that they can quantitatively make the right decision. He stated did not want to get into issues of ethnicity because he knows the college will do what is right and fair, based on the data. With no further discussion, the motion carried 8-0.
LEASE AGREEMENT WITH P&S RICE MILLS EXTENDED TO HOUSE THE file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (12 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
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COMMERCIAL TRUCK DRIVER TRAINING PROGRAM
Motion No. 808 - Mr. Austin made a motion to renew the lease agreement with P & S Rice Mills, Inc., to provide space for the operation of the Commercial Truck Driving Program until the new facility at
610 and I-10 East is completed. Mr. Russell seconded the motion.
Mr. Austin wanted the revenue estimate for one year. He computed the revenue expenditure at $102,000 per year. Dr. Margaret Forde replied the program has been generating in excess of the amount of the lease on an annual basis. Mr. Austin stated that while the President is responsible for the college, the finance side needs to be reported by the financial person in order to certify the accuracy of the figures.
Dr. Burgos-Sasscer responded that the Chief Financial Officer and the presidents work together. Mr.
Austin suggested that while the Presidents should have the responsibility for the programs, the financial aspects need to be verified at the Board table by the Chief Operations Officer.
Mr. Austin contended that the presidents and CFO do not actually work together. He added fiscal responsibility should not lie with the presidents, rather the CFO should be held responsible. The
Chancellor acknowledged his comments. With no further discussion the motion carried 8-0.
CHANCELLOR AUTHORIZED TO NEGOTIATE CONTRACT FOR THE CONSTRUCTION
OF PARKING LOTS AT THE NEW STAFFORD CAMPUS
Motion No. 809 - Mr. Davila made a motion to authorize the Chancellor to negotiate a contract for the construction of permanent and temporary parking lots, serving 700 vehicles, at the New Stafford
Campus, Southwest College. Mr. Russell seconded the motion.
Mrs. Garcia wanted to know if funds had been appropriated for parking at Central College since the
Board has discussed this subject many times. Mr. Russell noted that the problem is that land is not available at Central College.
Mrs. Garcia asked if the parking lot situation at Central had just been dropped or forgotten, or if there were any plans to add parking there. Mr. Austin recalled the issue came to the Board several years ago and vendors were pre-selected by the President. The Board agreed this was not proper procedure and asked the administration to come back with another proposal, but that never happened.
Mr. Murphy stated this was a matter of unfinished business. Mrs. Garcia commented it was unfinished and unfair. Mr. Russell stated he failed to see what Central had to do with the construction of lots at
Stafford. Mr. Fonteno noted that funds were under consideration for building parking lots at Central
Mrs. Garcia stated that her concerns related to distribution of funds and the issue of equity. If the needs of Stafford have been addressed, she asked if something could not be done for Central College, which has needed new parking lots for five years. Mr. Murphy pointed out that Stafford had lost their parking file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (13 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
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Mr. Austin felt it was a question of priorities --- if funds were identified for the Stafford lot, then we should not drop the subject of Central College, but look at other areas. Mr. Fonteno remarked he had worked with the past-president on the feasibility of multi-story parking and raised the issue of why nothing has been done about the parking meters put up around Central College.
Mr. Davila concurred that Central College does need additional parking. Having been a student there he witnessed the problem first-hand. He recalled he sent a letter to the Board and Chancellor in January suggesting that money be allocated to Central Colleges for parking and renovations. Dr. Burgos-Sasscer stated that these needs will receive top priority.
Mr. Murphy explained that the Stafford situation is an emergency, since they have lost the parking lot.
He stated he would like to see the study which was done on Central College. While in New York City, he and President Daniels observed opportunities to make money on parking and that Central has a tremendous opportunity to net some revenue from meters. Mr. Austin advised that the Chancellor should have resolved the issue and made a report to the Board -- someone must provide leadership. Dr. Burgos-
Sasscer replied that she was unaware of any plans for Central College.
Mr. Austin recommended digital scanning of Board minutes so they could be accessed and searched online. He also suggested that it would be beneficial if the Chancellor reviewed prior Board actions.
With no further discussion, the motion carried 8-0.
STATE AND LOCAL TUITION AND FEE WAIVERS APPROVED AS AMENDED
Mr. Russell moved approval of the list of State and HCCS tuition and/or fee exemptions and waivers for
Fiscal Year 1998-99. Mr. Davila seconded the motion
Mr. Murphy asked for clarification of the exemption issue, as addressed earlier by the apprenticeship representatives. Ms. Taylor indicated the list of proposed waivers and fee exemptions had been distributed to all the colleges, but she had received no feedback until today. There is a $50 minimum for short-term courses; this does not impact long-term courses as much. The union organizations have previously paid $33.00.
President Daniels explained that some years back an agreement was made because many of the apprenticeship programs were in their own facilities. Tuition was reduced to $33.00 by eliminating the building use fee. Since that time, the building use fee has been eliminated altogether; however, now there are a lot of professional development courses being given in the apprenticeship programs that are less than their full-blown courses for which they are paying $5.00 per hour rather than a small amount.
Mr. Austin asked what the $17.00 referred to. President Daniels replied that was a combination building use fee and (tape inaudible at this point due to noise). file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (14 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
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Dr. Burgos-Sasscer explained that other students pay $50.00 per hour and we are bringing the apprenticeship program up to that level. Mr. Murphy stated there are two issues -- what is right for the apprenticeship program and getting information that is understandable.
The Chancellor asked the Board what additional information they needed in order to make a decision.
Mr. Austin replied that a fee hike may take the apprenticeship students away from HCCS, so it is necessary to do a cost analysis. Mr. Murphy added it would be helpful to know where they would go and what that would cost.
President Daniels added that the apprenticeship students are funded by the apprenticeship council, and if tuition is raised that will decrease the amount of money they have to use. In other states they have gone to adult basic education schools, so they would probably attempt to contract with proprietary schools.
Amended Motion No. 810 - Mr. Russell amended his original motion to approve the item as presented, with the exception of Waiver W023 concerning students under apprenticeship training (a partnership with union organizations) which will remain as is pending further information on the financial impact to the college. Mr. Davila seconded the amended motion. Motion carried 8-0.
EXTENSION OF CONTRACT APPROVED FOR ACTING EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR/HUMAN
Motion No. 811 - Mr. Austin moved approval of the extension of the consulting contract for the Acting
Executive Director for Human Resources (Lee B. Murdy), through the August 27, 1998 Board Meeting.
Mr. Murphy seconded the motion.
Mr. Fonteno asked why we continue to place personnel in acting positions, when he felt this opens us up to legal actions. Mr. Davila felt there needed to be a policy on acting positions. The Chancellor called attention to the fact that the Board had approved such a policy earlier in the meeting.
Mr. Fonteno asked for clarification of the policy on acting positions. Dr. Burgos-Sasscer replied that the
Board never stated there would be no more acting positions, because there are times when this becomes necessary. Mr. Murphy stated the issue concerns acting personnel becoming permanent. Mr. Fonteno stated we have had acting positions as long as 18 months and the reason given is that the College can't find qualified employees. He noted probably all Board Members receive calls each month on employment matters.
It was pointed out by the Chancellor that the policy just adopted stated that persons in acting position cannot apply and will not be promoted to the position; however, we cannot put a limit on acting positions because of the length of time required for the hiring process.
Mr. Fonteno stated that a person taking an acting position should be required to sign an statement that they will not be considered for the position permanently. The Chancellor acknowledged that appropriate file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (15 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
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With no further discussion, the motion carried 7-0 ( Mrs. Smith was out of the room at the time of the vote ).
AWARDS AND PRESENTATIONS a. Faculty Recognition Award - The Chancellor awarded the Chancellor's Medallion to Ernest
Lowery, lead instructor for Developmental Math at Northwest College. She characterized Mr.
Lowery as a multi-talented instructor with the ability to work with students at all levels in order to help them succeed. He has served as department chair for mathematics; is a representative to the Gulf Coast consortium of Mathematics Instructors, and is a member of the Developmental
Math Discipline Committee. As a member of the community, he has done volunteer work for the
YMCA and his church and has coached youth basketball
NEW OR UNFINISHED BUSINESS a. A request for reimbursement under Board Policy BBG (Local), Board Members: Compensation and Expenses, from Trustee Oliver was tabled until the next meeting, since Mr. Oliver was out of the city.
CHANCELLOR'S REPORT a. Financial Activity Report - Diana Morales Taylor mentioned that under current funds, there are also auxiliary funds which are unrestricted funds, with a balance of about $2.2 million. That is another type of insurance in the balance sheet. To date there is $117 million in collected revenue,
$2.5 million over tax collections. Expenses stand at $103 million compared to $129 million anticipated expenditures. Our excess of revenue or expenses year-to-date is $13 million. We anticipate $3 million by year end and will move $2 million to the next year's budget to balance that and possibly have $1 million to go into the fund balance. The Revenue Enhancement
Committee is considering a model budget that is self-balancing.
Mr. Austin wanted to know who is responsible for the financial administration of the college and budget control. Dr. Burgos-Sasscer replied that was the role of the Chief Financial Officer Diana
Taylor. She added that Ms. Taylor has a dual role -- Chief Operations Officer and Chief Financial
Officer. Mr. Austin asked who has absolute responsibility for financial control. Dr. Burgos-
Sasscer replied she was ultimately responsible as Chancellor. Mr. Austin then asked who we rely on for the financial control of the budget and expenditures. The Chancellor stated we rely on reports prepared by the Chief Financial Officer. Mr. Austin noted that ultimately the Board is responsible for the fiscal operation of the System. He suggested that someone on staff needs to function as Chief Financial Officer and it seems there is confusion over that role. file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (16 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
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Dr. Burgos-Sasscer explained the Chief Financial Officer is the person with all the information.
Preparing and managing budgets is also the role of the presidents. Mr. Austin asked who was ultimately responsible to the policy-making and fiscal integrity of the Board with respect to the entire System, including the composite budgets of the presidents and the entire System. Dr.
Burgos-Sasscer replied that she assumed the Board would hold her ultimately responsible; but reports and information would be prepared by the Chief Financial Officer.
Mr. Austin stated the point he was making concerned delegation of responsibility and he would discuss this further in executive session. b. International Students and Board of Trustees Web Pages - Dr. Burgos-Sasscer informed the
Board of additions to the HCCS website, including an International Students site and additions to the Board's web page. The Board's page now includes individual pictures and bios of all Board
Members, as well as an online Request for Appearance form. As a side note, Dr. Burgos- Sasscer reported that HCCS is now fourth among community colleges in terms of numbers of international students, surpassing Miami-Dade.
CHAIRMAN'S REPORT a. Annual Evaluation of the Chancellor Mr. Henderson reminded the Board Members of the
Chancellor's evaluation scheduled for August 6. The Chancellor will distribute a report on her performance prior to the meeting, along with a copy of her contract. He encouraged all Trustees to review the information and make every effort to attend the meeting.
ADJOURNMENT TO CLOSED OR EXECUTIVE SESSION
Mr. Henderson adjourned the meeting to Executive Session at 6:35 p.m., notice having been previously given, and reiterated by him in accordance with the Open Meetings Law. He stated any final action, vote, or decision on any item discussed in Executive Session would be taken up in Open Session or in a subsequent Public Meeting. Mr. Henderson reconvened the meeting in Open Session at 7:30 p.m., and entertained motions on matters pending.
NON-FACULTY SABBATICAL LEAVE POLICY ADOPTED WITH REVISIONS
Motion No. 812 - Mr. Murphy moved adoption of the proposed policy for Non-Faculty Sabbatical Leave as a trial policy with revisions to be made by the Chancellor and returned to the Board for approval. Mr.
Austin seconded the motion. Motion carried 7-0 ( Mr. Davila had already left the meeting ).
PERSONNEL AGENDA APPROVED AS AMENDED
Motion No. 813 - Mr. Austin moved approval of the Personnel Agenda as amended, to correct a typographical error. Mr. Russell seconded the motion. Motion carried 7-0.
SCHEDULING OF NEXT MEETING
The next regular meeting will be held at 4:00 p.m., on Thursday, August 27, 1998, at 22 Waugh Drive. file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (17 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
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AD HOC COMMITTEE REPORTS a. Facilities - Mr. Murphy reported that the Facilities Committee is reviewing current facilities, the need for new facilities, and the vacating of other facilities. He encouraged the Trustees to read the information provided in the minutes and provide feedback. He added that the next meeting on
August 13 will be significant in terms of data that is being compiled.
b. Naming of Buildings/Southwest - Mr. Murphy reported that the committee was recommending that the Stafford Science and Technology Building be named in honor of Mayor Leonard
Scarcella. The committee conducted research and talked to people in the community before making their decision. Mr. Henderson asked that the recommendation be placed on the next agenda. Mrs. Garcia commented that she felt this was an excellent choice.
REQUEST FOR PRESENTATION FOR A MARKETING PLAN
Mr. Murphy requested a presentation from administration on a Marketing Plan. He noted that a recent newspaper supplement on education did not mention HCCS. Mrs. Garcia stated she wanted a report on efforts toward a marketing and outreach plan as part of the Chancellor's performance report in advance of the evaluation. Mr. Murphy stated this oversight troubled him, because he knows how good HCCS is and would like the issue of the marketing plan revisited.
Mr. Austin asked if the report requested previously on a timetable for a media plan in connection with a revenue enhancement effort had been done. The Chancellor replied she had asked for this report, but has not yet received it. She stated this would be tied in with the marketing plan. Mr. Austin noted that a decision must be made soon regarding a revenue enhancement effort, in light of recent announcements from other entities.
Dr. Burgos-Sasscer called attention to a special newspaper supplement in which HCCS was highlighted.
Mrs. Smith added The Leader ran a story regarding the Cy-Fair ISD bond initiative and how it was planned. She felt the Board should look at this.
Mrs. Garcia noted that when Board Members make a strong point or bring up an issue, its very important to that individual Board Member, and she wanted to ensure that the minutes accurately reflect those comments. Therefore, she asked that comments from Board Members not be edited. She stated that many issues have surfaced today that are critical. She and Mr. Austin are deciding on a way to put these comments in writing so they are addressed. Dr. Burgos-Sasscer noted that the Administrative
Assistant to the Board of Trustees already prepares a matrix following each Board Meeting to track
Board requests for action or information. Mr. Henderson recalled that he had recommended that items requiring action or follow-up be recorded in this format. Mrs. Garcia asked for a copy of the memorandum.
ADJOURNMENT file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/hccs/My%20Do...f%20Trustees%20%20Minutes%201998/july_minutes.html (18 of 19) [3/25/2008 4:30:24 PM]
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With no further business to come before the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 7:39 p.m.
Minutes Prepared By:
Linda Gray, Administrative Assistant
Board Services Office
Reviewed, Finalized and Submitted By:
John Fonteno, Jr., Secretary
Board of Trustees
Minutes Approved as Submitted:
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