Nanook Nation was out in force for the annual Golden Days parade in Fairbanks July 23. Photo courtesy UAF.

Announcements June 2016

  • Fiscal 2017 Healthyroads wellness program is available
  • Salary information released
  • Updates to Statewide Transformation Decisions Posted Online
  • Parking decal enforcement increased - new permits available Aug. 1
  • Clearing Confusion over Premera Coverage
  • Watch out for Pokémon Trainers
  • SAA July Highlights
  • Voice Archives a Beneficial Resource

Fiscal 2017 Healthyroads wellness program is available

Fiscal year 2017 has begun, which means two things for the wellness program — wellness rebates have begun and this fiscal year’s program is available online.

If you and/or your spouse/financially interdependent partner completed all required activities during FY16, the wellness rebate has started being paid out (for 12-month employees). You can verify this for yourself by checking your paystub and looking for the “WRB” notation. The wellness rebate is applied to each pay period where standard health care deductions occur. Also, remember, the rebate earned by spouses/FIPs will also be paid out to the employee who actually carries the insurance. Notice any discrepancies? Please contact your local HR or Sara.

The FY17 wellness program has launched on the Healthyroads portal. Now when you log in, you will be able to view the FY17 program requirements and get started. Completing all required items will reward you with the wellness rebate over FY18. As in previous years, there is a login link provided for both employees and spouses/FIPs for Healthyroads at: www.alaska.edu/benefits/wellness. Employees will be able to utilize their current UA username and password. Spouses/FIPs will be redirected over to Healthyroads to then log in with the username and password that they chose during registration. As occurred last year, we are providing a “look-back” for all activities to May 1, 2016. This means you may be ahead of the game already and have earned points. Be sure to log in to check-out where you stand and see what will be required this year. We will start communicating the new program year soon, but in the meantime for questions you can contact UA’s on-site program manager, Sara Rodewald, at sararo@ashn.com or 907-450-8203.

Would you like to get a more in-depth introduction of the program this year? Rodewald will provide overviews of the program and requirements to small groups at any campus. This can be a great option to clarify lingering questions and ensure you and your co-workers are in the know.

Watch out for Pokémon Trainers

You have probably heard about the new Pokémon Go, location-based, augmented reality game that has peaked in popularity since its release July 2016. Typically played on mobile phones, players use the device's GPS and camera to capture, battle, and train virtual creatures, called Pokémon, who appear on the screen as if they were in the same real-world location as the player.

What you may not be aware of is the presence of multiple PokéStops and PokéGyms on campus, including within the Butrovich building, a stop near the overlook on the corner and gyms at the museum, GI and Botanical gardens. (There are many more at other campus locations too!)

Students, employees and community members in search of rare Pokémon may be passing through the halls and parking lots in greater numbers. Please, be sure that you are looking out for visitors at all time, and be especially viligant for people who may be distracted by their phone screens.

The Pidgey Pokémon was hanging around the attendees at the Strategic Pathways work session July 26, seen here having coffee with UAF Vice Chancellor Mike Sfraga and AVP Public Affairs Robbie Graham. Photo "captured" by Kate Wattum

SAA July Highlights

Your Statewide Administration Assembly held a regular business meeting on Wednesday, July 20 (agenda). These are highlights from the meeting:

1. Update from VP White on the ongoing single accreditation review.

  • It is too early to tell which way the university will go with respect to three or a single accreditation. The report from Dr. Thomas will likely be posted publicly in early August. Thomas is soliciting input from leaders around the country, including Terry MacTaggart.
  • SAA plans to schedule a Coffee with the President to discuss with staff after the report is completed in August as there will be a substantial discussion on the topic at the September Board of Regents’ meeting in Juneau.
  • Single accreditation would not preclude separate schools/colleges for the same subject (i.e. two Schools of Management).
  • If single accreditation is found to be the best option, the process to switch could take three years or more years—it would be a complex and multi-layered process. Options could be to wrap two of the universities under the third university's accreditation, or apply for a new accreditation with all three schools.

2. Update from CHRO Hite McGee on the Human Resources Council and HR re-alignment.

  • Currently exploring the possibility of having a staff representative on the HRC to provide input and feedback. 
  • HR is under review of the next phase of Strategic Pathways and, among other goals and reviews, is currently trying to align HR with UA’s mission, values and goals.

3. SW Forum: Members discussed developing a forum to address SW issues, ask questions, share ideas, etc. as part of their goal to increase communication with staff.

  • The forum will be similar to UAF’s Grapevine, but SAA is still in the infancy stage and will have more to share as we begin to finalize the process.

4. Annual Events: SAA began the process of the reviewing their annual event calendar to determine what events to hold this year. If you have any suggestions for events or activities, send them to Morgan at mdufseth@alaska.edu. The event calendar will incorporate Anchorage and Fairbanks (BoB and Butrovich buildings).

Lastly, the FY17 Employee Benefits Handbook is available online at: www.alaska.edu/benefits

The next scheduled SAA meeting is Wednesday, August 17 in Butrovich 204 in Fairbanks and Bragaw 205 in Anchorage. All staff are welcome and encourage to attend. You can also reach out to SAA members between meetings to share concerns or ideas. Additional information about SAA meetings is available on their website <http://www.alaska.edu/governance/saa/

Eric Johnson, SAA President

Salary information released

The university released employee salary and benefit information on July 20 to an Alaska-based freelance reporter, Shane Castle.

Under the Alaska Public Records Act (AS 40.25.110-.220), the State Personnel Act (AS 39.25.080(b)) and Regents’ Policy (P04.01.062; P06.02.010-.100), certain employee information is public and must be disclosed upon request. This information release will include all full-time employee positions. Student employee information will not be released, due to protections under federal law.

The information released is limited to:

  • Job classification title
  • Employee class (staff, faculty, executive)
  • Administrative unit (UAA, UAF, UAS, Statewide)
  • Annual salary
  • Benefit rate based on employee class (retirement/pension, annual leave and health care)

Castle is examining specific pay-package information for full-time employees, specifically administrators, coaches, coaching staff and faculty. The information is based on data from July 1, 2016.

While there is no ability to opt-out of a release of public information, we wanted you to be aware of it. Please be assured that only the public information detailed above will be released.

If you have questions regarding salary and benefits contact: ua-hrcomp@alaska.edu.

For other concerns, please contact: kate.wattum@alaska.edu.

Updates to Statewide Transformation Decisions Posted Online

As part of ongoing efforts to communicate about changes underway as a result of the Statewide Transformation review, charts with the final recommendations, RACI (Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, Informed) appointments and status updates have been posted to newly created pages on the Transformation Team website

On April 14, President Johnsen announced 113 recommendations including reductions in functions or positions, changes in the location of work being done, and changes in how Statewide collaborates with campuses. There were deadlines associated with each recommendation varying from done or no change to 30-, 60-, or 90- days.

Since April, there have been massive changes affecting Statewide and the UA system as a whole, including the State passing a budget with a $25 million  reduction, the launching of Strategic Pathways reviews, research into institutional accreditation and ongoing discussions on optimizing the university system. While many of the Statewide Transformation recommendations have been completed or are in progress, others have had the deadlines extended or have been incorporated into Strategic Pathways reviews.

The President has tasked his direct reports with providing status updates on the recommendations under their authority. Those ongoing reports will be used to periodically update the webpages.

Academic Affairs/University Relations



Human Resources

Information Technology

Parking decal enforcement increased - new permits available Aug. 1

New sustainable permit option!

You may have noticed an increase in parking decal enforcement around the Butrovich this past month, or been a recipient of a parking ticket (or two) yourself. Remember, while the Butrovich is a mixed guest and decal lot ALL employees are expected to purchase a parking decal.

The current decal will expire August 31. New decals will be available for purchase through the Burser's office beginning August 1.

The Office of the Bursar is piloting a new permit this fall semester that will be available for all permanent full-time staff and faculty. The permit is long term and will not have an annual expiration date. The sustainable permit will be renewed automatically each year. Interested individuals will be able to purchase the permit by payroll deduction with a $50.00 per pay period (until fully paid) option. The payroll deduction will be resubmitted annually until you initiate a termination request.
For more information, or to pay a citation, visit: www.uaf.edu/finserv/bursar/parkingservices/

Clearing Confusion over Premera Coverage

No change in coverage for rehabilitation/massage for UA's plan

Premera’s agreement on outpatient rehabilitation treatment benefits (chiropractic care, massage therapy, physical therapy, acupuncture, etc.) with the university have not changed. Premera did implement a new prior authorization process through a company called EviCore for its fully insured lines of business; however, it does not apply to University of Alaska’s plan.

In an effort to communicate the change to patients, your health care provider may be posting notices and having patients go through the preauthorization process. UA has asked Premera to follow up with providers to let them know it’s not applicable to all their patients and they should contact Premera to confirm the terms.

Voice Archives a Beneficial Resource

Looking for information on benefits, budget updates, employee news or past announcements? The "Search Articles" box in the left menu of Statewide Voice pages is an easy to use portal for accessing older publication content. Use the power of Google to instantly bring up past Statewide Voice publications by name, topic or other search term. After 110 issues you'd be amazed at all the information available for review!

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