UF IFAS Faculty Council Meeting Minutes
March 11, 2008
Larson Dairy Science Building
Individuals present: Brenda Rogers, Sherry Larkin, Monica Elliott (Polycom), Jerry Culen, David
Holmes, Lynda Spence (guest), David Norman, Judy Butterfield
David Holmes called the meeting to order at 1:10 PM. Dr. Cheek will call in at 1:30 PM. He is on
his way to Tallahassee.
Approval of minutes from the 20 Feb 2008 Faculty Council meeting Brenda Rogers moved to
approve, Jerry Cullen seconded the motion. The minutes were approved with no corrections or
David reviewed the meeting agenda: We need to replace Jim Selph on the Faculty Senate.
David will send Paul Willis four names for consideration. We also need to name two individuals
to the UF (Senate) Budget council. Al Wysocki (the current council chair) and David Mulkey are
rotating off; both are from the Food and Resource Economics Department. The university
Provost serves on this committee and they meet only a couple of times each year. Our
suggestions to be forwarded to Al are Tim White, Ramesh Reddy, and Mike Sweat.
Dr. Arrington is scheduled for the April 15 Faculty Council meeting at 3pm need to generate
questions for him:
- Extension Symposium has been seen as a positive experience, there is concern with
having to cancel. Discussion followed on having some of the scheduled presentations for
the symposium to still take place that week via other methods. One suggestion was possibly
each of the goal teams may be able to have a day or portion of a day for their
presentations/trainings. It was noted the guest speaker may deliver his/her presentation via
Polycom. It is expected that more information will be forthcoming from the Extension Dean's
office regarding potential scheduling for seminars.
- How does Larry interact with the counties? How do we prevent Extension from being
absorbed into other county departments? His observation of his visit with South Central
administrators in regard to the state's role in helping counties understand the value of the
- View of Florida budget compared to other southern region states breakdown in the budget
from the federal funding vs. state funding vs. county funding.
David will send these questions/issues to Dr. Arrington prior to the April meeting.
Discussion followed on selection possible individuals to be nominated for a three year term on
the Faculty Senate. David went over the names of those currently serving as Senators and also
who will be rotating off of the Faculty Council at the end of this year. The following list was
generated, and four names will be sent to Paul Willis for Dr. Cheek's consideration to ask if they
would put their names in for nomination: 1) Gail Kauwell ( FSHN); 2) Phil Koehler
(Entomology); 3) Martha Monroe (Forestry); 4) Mary Williams (Nassau Co. CED). Other names
suggested were Bob Hochmuth, Laurie Trenholm, Debbie Murie, Barbara Hughes, Anita Neal,
Audrey Norman, and Mark Hostetler. These nominations will go out in May.
Dr Cheek joined the meeting by phone at approximately 1:30 PM. He reported on the following:
1. Legislative moving through with budget cutting strategy. There will be 2-3 bills
addressing the budget in this session 1.8% cut is probably the first round, and will cut
to approximately 4% in second round effective July 1. Money will be given back
centrally to the state no additional call back from units. Still uncertain as to how much it
will be strategy is to cut no more than they have to but monitor the budget situation
within the state maybe 4 to 6% in addition to what we have already given back.
Question was asked: "How are we with the situation?"- need to be careful as to the
information given out more letters were sent than what anyone thought. All of the
communication is having an impact, but we do not know the decision on the
contemplation of a differential cut for IFAS. Jerry Culen asked: the billion or so dollars
set aside for rainy day what is the status of this? There is a hesitation to use this rainy
day fund trying to get by without using funds but may need to dip into them. Governor
Crist has held back 4% the first 2 quarters we may not know anything regarding the
severity of the budget cuts until first week of May.
2. Status of budget cuts at UF President Machen has sent a letter to each unit requesting
a cut of 6% that is equivalent to $10,000,000, and is in addition to $7,000,000 we were
cut in October, 2007. Total of over $17 million this year this would be more than a 10%
cut. First cut in October took 40 faculty positions that were vacant we do not have the
vacant positions to work with in this next cut. Some units within IFAS will be hit harder
than others no department will go untouched. However, we are still looking at some
critical positions that must be filled across the board county offices, RECs, etc. that
need to be filled to remain operational. Will need to implement cuts by July 1, 2008 will
need to have balanced budget by July 1, 2009.
3. Five people from the agriculture community had a meeting with President Machen on
Friday, March 7 to discuss the budget situation. They were clear they did not represent
all of the constituents of IFAS. Those attending this meeting were John Hoblick,
President of Florida Farm Bureau; Jim Handley, Executive VP, Florida Cattlemen's
Association; Mike Stewart, Florida Fruit and Vegetable Association; Mike Sparks, Florida
Citrus Mutual; and Ben Bolusky, Executive VP, FNGLA. Dr. Cheek was in attendance
and said it was a very positive meeting.
4. Dr. Cheek was in Washington, DC last week was asked to give a "state of the
university" report he reported on the positive and that county funding is up to $40
million highest it has ever been. Our grants and contracts summed to $95.3 million,
our endowment is highest it has ever been (approaching $100,000,000) for IFAS. Need
to focus on the positive. Eventually we will come out of this slump and IFAS must be
positioned to move ahead in our various mission areas.
5. Jerry Culen raised a question about reports that transfer numbers from community
colleges may be limited. Dr. Cheek reported that CALS coordinators met with a
representative from Provost's office. Discussion followed on the freeze of students
coming from the community colleges, what impact this will have, and how it will hurt the
enrollment of CALS. We need transfer students to fill the land grant mission and to fill
our classes approximately 40% of CALS students are transfers. President Machen
addressed the issue of the importance of these students to CALS to a group of industry
leaders. Dr. Cheek suggested Kirby Barrick, or if not available, Elaine Turner to attend
the April Faculty Council meeting to discuss the issue of transfer students to CALS -
need to possibly involve Senators. Other colleges such as Engineering appreciate
transfer students and their importance to UF. David will see if Dean Barrick and Senate
President Rick Yost are able to attend the April meeting to discuss the transfer student
issue. Jerry will check with Dr. Turner on the time line regarding decision about transfer
6. Other items Dr. Cheek addressed included hosting a dinner for current Faculty Council
members and their guests after the May 13th meeting. The council thanked him for this.
More details will follow.
Status on Constitution Committee Bill Lindberg has done excellent job will have a working
group meeting on March 21st to finalize the constitution. Hope to present a final draft to the
council at the April 15th meeting. It was suggested a copy be sent out ahead of time to Faculty
Council members for their perusal. Hopefully the newly revised constitution can get out to IFAS
faculty in May will need to discuss time frame for getting it out and how to filter the comments.
Judy gave update on Senate Meeting -just reiterating what has already been discussed that all
units will take their share of cuts, some more severe because of the size of the department.
It was suggested to try to schedule Cindy Littlejohn for June for a state budget wrap up.
Brenda Rogers discussed that DROP was becoming a statewide concern there is a
movement to eliminate DROP are individuals taking advantage of the program?
No further business, the meeting adjourned at 2:54 PM.
Submitted by Judy Butterfield.