September 19, 1997

Regent Meeting

September 19, 1997  NR 17-1997

The Board of Regents of the University of Alaska will meet Wednesday through Friday, September 24-26, 1997, at the Butrovich Building on the UAF campus in Fairbanks.

On Wednesday, the Planning and Development Committee will meet from 8:30 until 11:30 a.m., followed by the initial portion of a meeting of the Committee of the Whole at which state legislators are expected to attend. This initial session is scheduled to end at 3:30 p.m.

The Committee of the Whole will resume its meeting at 1 p.m. on Thursday with adjournment scheduled for 5 p.m. Meetings of the board's other committees will begin Thursday at 7:30 a.m. and continue until 5 p.m. The Audit Committee will meet at 7 a.m. Friday morning. All committee meetings will be held at the Butrovich Building.

The full board meeting will begin at 8 a.m. on Friday with public testimony scheduled first on the agenda, and the meeting is expected to adjourn at 5 p.m.

The following agenda items are listed by committee of origin:

Planning and Development
The Planning and Development Committee will receive preliminary oral reports from committees organized to identify potential savings through changes in the role and mission of the system office, on the university's organization of efforts in distance education and on resource allocation. The committee also will continue its discussions on the role and scope of the university's major administrative units, and its review of purposes, principles and priorities, as well as discuss the possibility of inviting special guests to discuss trends in Alaska's economy, population, and elementary and secondary education needs.

Committee of the Whole
On Wednesday afternoon, the Committee of the Whole will meet with legislators to discuss the university's research programs, UAF's extended campuses and other issues of mutual interest to regents and legislators.

During the Thursday session, the Committee of the Whole will:

  • Receive the annual report from the College of Rural Alaska Advisory Council.
  • Consider approval of the university's FY99 operating and capital budget requests which will be submitted in November to the governor for incorporation into the executive budget request which goes to the legislature. The administration has proposed a general fund operating budget request of $171,942.5 million for the next fiscal year. Last year the university received $166.9 million in state general funds for a total operating budget of just over $440 million. The administration is proposing a general fund capital budget request of $177,013.7 million which includes $165,113.7 million for code compliance and deferred maintenance on university facilities. Last year, the regents requested $103 million in capital funds, and received a total of $56.7 million, of which only $6.5 million was from the state general fund. The remainder came from Alaska Housing Finance Corporation and other non-general funds. In addition to the total amount needed for deferred maintenance and code compliance, the FY99 capital request also includes $7.5 million for instructional equipment and telecommunications; $2.4 million for the UAA campus consortium library; $1.5 million for UAF's School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences in Juneau, and $500,000 for the University of Alaska Museum in Fairbanks.
  • Consider an administration proposal to defer setting tuition rates for Academic Year 1999 until the November meeting. Under current regents' policy, 1999 tuition rates would increase by three percent, which is the three-year Higher Education Price Index (HEPI) average percentage increase. Implementation of the policy would result in tuition rates for 1999 as shown:

In building its FY99 budget request, the administration has made the assumption that tuition rates for community college courses will be held constant while rates for all other courses will increase by the HEPI average. This is premised on the fact that tuition rates for community college level courses at the University of Alaska are significantly higher than rates at community colleges in other western states. However, there are other issues that must also be considered in setting academic year 1999 tuition rates, most notably the potential effect of those rates on revenues and/or enrollments. The administration recommends that the board have a general discussion regarding tuition rates, but defer taking action until November, thereby providing additional time for student discussion and testimony, as well as time to gather data on FY98 enrollments and national tuition trends.

Receive a report on the status of technology transfer at the university in view of the suspension of the operation of the University of Alaska Technology Development Corporation. Trustees of the corporation unanimously voted to suspend operations and transfer all assets to the university following the regents' decision to terminate or modify all existing agreements with the organization because of cost concerns. An intellectual property committee has been established on the UAF campus, and a systemwide committee has been re-convened for the purpose of making recommendations to the administration about all existing and future technology transfer disclosures.

Academic and Student Affairs
Members of the UA Professional Education Coordinating Committee (PECC) will provide an overview of the intermediate plan which was developed by the PECC and presented to the Ad Hoc Committee on UA's Schools of Education in August. Members of the Fairbanks North Star Borough School board have been invited to participate in this session.

The committee also will consider formal approval of the formation of the International Arctic Research Center at UAF provided negotiations with Japanese authorities are concluded by that time.
Committee members also will receive a report on the adjustments made to the academic calendars of the major regional campuses to accommodate the observance of Alaska Civil Rights Day without reducing the number of days of instruction.

Finance, Facilities and Land Management
Committee members will:
Consider approval of revisions to Policy 05.07.01 on management of the Land-Grant Endowment, and the annual budget allocations from the Natural Resource Fund.
Consider approval of the UAF coal-water project.
Consider approval of the University of Alaska Museum expansion project.
Consider approval of the schematic design for the UAA telecommunications backbone and connectivity project.
Receive reports on risk management, the NOAA project in Juneau, implementation of the Banner software, utilization of the Brooks Building at UAF and on capital projects now underway.

Human Resources
The Human Resources Committee will receive reports on labor relations, implementation of the retirement incentive program for university employees, on the leave share program replacement, Affirmative Action and an update on changing the university's health benefits program from a defined benefit to a defined contribution program.

All meetings of the Board of Regents and its committees, except for executive sessions, are open to the public.

During the meeting, telephone messages can be left at 907-474-7908, fax 907-474-6342.

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Bob Miller, 907-474-7272