As approved at the May 25, 2000, meeting of the Board of Governors. The "in camera" portion of the minutes have not been included herein. Copies of Appendices not included herein are available from the University Secretariat, Room 290, Stevenson-Lawson Building.
The meeting was held at 1:30 p.m. in Room 330, Stevenson-Lawson Building
PRESENT: Ms. C. McAulay-Weldon, Chair; Ms. J.K. Van Fleet, Secretary
Mr. J. Adams, Mr. S. Adams, Dr. W.A. Bridger, Dr. R. Colcleugh, Mr. C. Colvin, Dr. P. Davenport, Mr. J. Etherington, Mr. T. Garrard, Mr. W. Gibson, Ms. S. Grindrod, Prof. M. Lennon, Mr. D.J. McDougall, Dr. P.P. Mercer, Dr. G. Moran, Dr. P. Neary, Mr. W.W. Peel, Mr. M. Pickard, Mr. M. Rubinoff, Mr. H. Taylor, Mr. T. Vine, Dr. A. Weedon, Mr. M. Weyers, Ms. L. Whittaker
By Invitation: R. Del Maestro, J. Millar, R. Monteith, and D. Riddell.
The Board met initially in closed session, and the proceedings are recorded in the confidential portion of these Minutes. The open session of the meeting began at 2:30 p.m.
The minutes of the meeting of March 30, 2000, were approved as circulated.
On behalf of the Board the Chair congratulated Mr. Joel Adams on receiving the USC's Students' Award of Merit, in acknowledgment of his contributions to the life of the University based on a well-rounded commitment to academics, student government, athletics, arts, and philanthropy.
Dr. Davenport reported on the following items:
Dr. Davenport highlighted his presentation on Research in the Art, Humanities, and Social Sciences with the use of slides, copies of which are attached as Appendix 1 to these minutes.
Complete details of his report are provided in Appendix I, Report of the President.
On behalf of the Property & Finance Committee, it was moved by D. McDougall, seconded by R. Colcleugh,
That the University's Operating and Capital Budgets for 2000-01 and supporting Tuition and Fee schedules be approved as shown on Appendix II, Annex 1 and Annex 2.
Mr. McDougall stated that the proposed operating budget and tuition fee levels acknowledge the Senate's advice that graduate student tuition for most graduate programs should be approximately 2%, as compared to the initial recommendation that they be set at 4.8%. The Property & Finance Committee did not, however, agree that the tuition increase for students in the graduate program in Orthodontics should be reduced from 5% as originally proposed. Dr. Davenport reported that at the Senate meeting the Dean of Graduate Studies spoke against the recommendation, pointing out that 75% of the graduate student tuition revenue flows back to graduate student support and provides financial benefit to a large number of students in the SSHRC areas where external funding is lower than for students who have access to MRC and NSERC funds. However, Senate did not find this argument compelling.
Responding to Mr. Taylor's concerns about the proposed budget, Dr. Mercer stated that the University's vulnerability arises out of several factors. The budget planning model assumed a 3% increase in base grants and a 5% increase in regulated tuition fees in 2000-01. The net effect of the grant and tuition announcement results in a shortfall of $2 - $3 million relative to the projected model. Rather than attempt to reduce planned expenditures for 2000-01 to adjust for the shortfall, the final budget recommendations for 2000-01 reflect the unit allocations that were based on the original planning model. The government announcement included two new operating grant envelopes - the Accessibility Fund and the Performance Indicators Fund - with a total value of $16.5 million each. The Accessibility Fund will be distributed according to enrolment growth (measured in total undergraduate BIUs) that takes place in 2000-01, but universities will be eligible to access this fund only if their admission to first-year entry-level programs in fall 2000 are equal to or greater than those for fall 1999. First-year enrolments are extremely difficult to predict because of unexpected changes in confirmation rates. Last fall, total first-year enrolments at Western and the affiliated colleges increased by about 9% due to a substantial and unexpected increase in confirmation rates. For this reason, it will be difficult for Western to be eligible for the Accessibility Fund. Failure to participate in the Accessibility Fund will reduce operating grants by $1.4 million or more. In the absence of this revenue the projected 2000-01 Operating Reserve will be reduced to $700,000 from $2.1 million. The year-end projection for 2000-01 is a surplus of $3 million, which is required to offset the previous year's deficit of $1.4 million and to replenish, in part, the Operating Reserve. These factors account for the fact that a special appropriation is needed from undistributed investment returns in the amount of $8.5 million to the Operating Budget.
Dr. Davenport concurred with Dr. Mercer's explanation of the financial difficulties surrounding the 2000-01 budget. Linking the Accessibility Fund to enrolment growth is worrisome: the Ministry will be asked to remove or modify the eligibility criterion.
Asked for the balance of the University's undistributed investment account at April 30, 2000, Mr. E. Del Maestro, Senior Director of Financial Services, stated that the balance expected at the end of April 2000 will be in the range of $14 million. Next year, at the end of April 2001, the balance could be $10 million, assuming a 7.8% return on investments, which is the average return over the last six or seven years.
Mr. Taylor contended that the budget potentially overstates revenues and understates expenses in the areas of salaries. Also, the difficulties associated with securing funding from the Accessibility Fund are disturbing. He was concerned that next year at this time the Board could be faced with no operating reserve funds, a situation which is not acceptable. He asked if the budget could be reforecasted part way through the fiscal year. Dr. Davenport stated that the Board receives quarterly updates on the status of the budget. This addresses the possibility of reforecasting the budget, without the complications reforecasting presents. The quarterly report will be made at the end of the first quarter which starts May 1, 2000. The administration should know at that time whether Western will receive funding from the Accessibility Fund.
Dr. Moran advised that even at this time it is very difficult to make any major expense adjustments for next year. Students begin registering for courses in one month and faculty appointments are set; therefore, to make substantial adjustments that result in a $1-$2 million savings would be extremely disruptive to the operations of the institution. The administration is aware that next year Western will face extremely serious revenue shortfalls and the initial planning process for next year's budget will take this factor into account, in addition to the fact that the Operating Reserve must be restored to the Board-mandated level of $2.5 million.
Mr. J. Adams asked for clarification of the 33.3% increase in Direct Ancillary Contributions, specifically an increase to $1.2 million from $900,000. Dr. Mercer stated that the increase is not related simply to efficiencies, nor is it predicated on price increases. As the size of the business operations increase, including increased volume, and as the business positions improve from year to year, it is possible to add a $300,000 contribution from the ancillary operations to the University's operating budget.
Mr. S. Adams asked when the financial statements for the Research Park will be received. Dr. Bridger stated that the Research Park Board has received the financial statements but has not yet met to approve them in light of ongoing negotiations with the Bank of Montreal about long-term financing.
The question was called and CARRIED.
It was moved by D. McDougall, seconded by R. Colcleugh,
That the 2000-01budgets for Ancillaries, Academic Support Units, Student Fee Funded Units and related Activity Fee rates, be approved as summarized in Appendix II, Annex 3.
The Board was advised that the Southside Group of Companies was awarded the construction contract for the Natural Sciences Centre 689 seat classroom addition in the amount of $2,615,000. The project is funded from the SuperBuild Program.
The Report on Scholarships, detailed in Appendix II, Annex 5, was received for information.
The Campus & Community Affairs Committee reported that the proposals detailing the Student Activity Fees for 2000-01 proposed by the USC and SOGS were presented at the meeting of April 3, 2000. In both cases, the CCAC supported the recommendations of the student association and, in keeping with the terms of reference of CCAC with respect to matters that are within the purview of the Property & Finance Committee, the report and recommendation of CCAC were forwarded to the Property & Finance Committee.
The Board was advised that neither the MBA Association, nor the PhD Business students requested a change in their fees from 1999-2000 levels.
The fees approved by the Board in Appendix II, Annex 3, are consistent with the student organization requests.
It was moved by S. Adams, seconded by M. Lennon,
That Special Resolution No. 2 - Delegation of Authority - be amended by the addition of the following text:
Imposition of Sanctions for Non-Academic Offences
The President is authorized to take such measures as are appropriate to promote the orderly conduct of students and is authorized to impose academic and/or other sanctions on students who commit non-academic offences. This authority may be sub-delegated by the President. This authority shall not be limited by proceedings taken under other internal policies or codes unless circumscribed by resolution of the Board.
The Administration on the authority of the President (or the President's delegate) retains the discretion to impose academic and/or other sanctions on students for non-academic offences notwithstanding any other civil, criminal or quasi-criminal proceedings which may be taken in a particular case.
Mr. Rubinoff asked about the status of an appeals process. The Board Secretary stated that the issue of the appeal process will be reviewed when the Code of Student Conduct is received and if the Code includes an appeals process and the Board finds it adequate, no further action will be required. On the other hand, if the Code does not contain an appeal process or the Board finds it inadequate, the issue can be taken up by the Board. The draft Code of Student Conduct will be published in Western News on May 11, 2000, with an invitation for written submissions to be directed to Professor Brian Timney. These comments will assist the Advisory Committee in preparing a final version of the Code which will be brought forward for approval in the Fall.
Mr. J. Adams voiced concern about academic sanctions for non-academic offences. Dr. Mercer stated that Section 18 of The University of Western Ontario Act, 1982, states;
Except in such matters as are assigned by this Act to the Senate or other body, the government, conduct, management and control of the University and of its property and affairs are vested in the Board, and the Board may do such things as it considers to be for the good of the University and consistent with the public interest.
The fact that academic sanctions might be imposed is not an intrusion on Senate's authority over academic programs. It is natural that the University, being pre-eminently an academic institution, would give rise where there is a violation of its proprietary interest to academic sanctions as part of the range. It is within the Board's jurisdiction to decide to impose sanctions with respect to those types of offences and the academic sanction is one of the "arrows in the quiver": it does not intrude on the exceptional authority that is given to Senate for academic program matters under the University of Western Ontario Act.
The question was called and CARRIED
It was moved by S. Adams, seconded by S. Grindrod,
That Special Resolution No.10 be amended as follows:
3.00(h) exercising general supervision over the use of University properties to promote the orderly conduct and safety of persons entering upon the lands and premises of the University
6.00 The President & Vice-Chancellor may delegate such powers, duties and functions of the office as the incumbent sees fit, but remains responsible for the actions of such delegates. In delegating presidential authority to act, the President & Vice-Chancellor shall prescribe conditions governing the exercise of any delegated power, duty and function, including the power of sub-delegation.
It was moved by L. Whittaker, seconded by M. Lennon,
That the Board of Governors appoint the Vice-Provost & Registrar to serve as Chair pro tem of the Supervisory Board of the Student Disciplinary Code, in place of the Commissioner for Undergraduate Student Life.
Michael Rubinoff was appointed to membership on the Supervisory Board, Student Disciplinary Code (term to February 1, 2001).
There is no Strategic Issues meeting planned for May 25.
The Board was advised that on April 14, 2000, the Senate of the University considered the 2000-01 University Operating and Capital Budgets as recommended by the Senate Committee on University Planning.
As discussed earlier in this meeting, Senate's debate focussed on the proposed 4.8% increase in graduate student fees. As a result, the main motion was amended to increase graduate tuition rates only 2%. Senate's advice to the Board was:
The Senate has approved and recommends to the Board of Governors, though the Vice-Chancellor, the 2000-01 University Operating and Capital Budgets as shown (blue cover document) except that in Table 10a, Lines 33-37, 40-41, and 43-50, "4.8%" [and "5.0%" in the case of line 44] be struck and replaced by "2.0%".
The report from Senate, Appendix VI, contained information on the following matters:
Carol McAulay-Weldon, Chair
Janis K. Van Fleet, Secretary of the Board