University Librarian's Cabinet: Minutes of the May 2, 2006 Meeting
- Agnew, Boyle, Fultz, Gaunt, Golden, Mullins, Puniello, Sewell, Tehrani, Zapcic
- N. Hendrickson
University Librarian's Report – Gaunt
- Gaunt sent messages to eligible tenure-track librarians requesting their participation in the Libraries' mentoring program and to all tenured library faculty asking them to consider volunteering to be a mentor for a tenure-track librarian; has received some responses; will send out reminder and also ask Cabinet for nominations.
- Deans Council: Executive VP Furmanski reported that there is no news from the Governor's office on the budget situation; they are still saying that higher education is a priority if budget restoration is there. Furmanski reminded us that the units' budget reduction target has already taken some restoration into consideration and that tuition will increase; our reduction percentage is unlikely to change. Puniello noted that at the University Senate meeting, SCILS professor Dan O'Connor spoke about how devastating the cut is going to be for the Libraries. Advocacy is the key right now.
- A capital campaign update was given; a few minor things related to our Cabinet agenda item this morning.
- Mike Beals and Barry Qualls reported on the Undergraduate Task Force Implementation; money had been set aside to support the recommendations; at least 13 or more subcommittees of the steering committee to do the implementation are being set up; there will be library representation on the committees. Discussed when the new curriculum would go into effect; in-coming freshman will get a diploma from their college for 06/07. Thereafter it will be from the university.
Vision for the Capital Campaign and Timetable – Gaunt
- In advance of the meeting, Gaunt distributed to Cabinet the handouts from the President's
Administrative Council/University Foundation meeting that was held April 18 to discuss campaign
preparedness and the university's draft vision statement. Handouts included a draft vision
process timetable, a campaign vision statement, "The Priorities Committee and the Priority
Setting Process," a breakdown of the previous campaign giving by source (alumni, friends,
family, foundation and matching gifts), a breakdown by gift purpose and type of gift, and a
draft of Rutgers University Endowment minimums (which requires approval of the Board of
Overseers). The university anticipates launching the public phase of its next comprehensive
capital campaign in 2009; the development of priorities will be a process inclusive of faculty,
staff and university leadership, guided by the overall vision of the university for the next ten
years. Comments are requested on the vision statement; a second draft will be forwarded to
faculty along with a call for proposals from the Office of the Executive Vice President for
Academic Affairs. Faculty and staff will be asked to develop proposals that support the vision
for the university. The proposals with the best possible recommendations for achieving the
university's vision will be put forward and then translated into a set of campaign priorities.
The handouts gave a description of the priorities process, committee structure, and a timeline
for campaign preparedness activities. Goals will be based on what was raised in the last
campaign. Comments on the vision statement are due by May 15, 2006. Cabinet should send any
comments or ideas for a successful campaign to Gaunt.
Report from the President's Advisory Committee – Gaunt
- Gaunt attended the second meeting of the Advisory Committee on the University's Budget this
morning. Deans were asked at the meeting to report on how they are planning to handle their
mandatory budget reduction scenarios. Deans are discussing cross unit resource sharing and
sharing of staff; faculty and staff nearing retirement are being urged to consider retiring this
year; deans are moving their people onto soft money from state lines; some schools are
eliminating programs; and there will be many cuts in adjuncts and vouchers. The Libraries need
to know what the deans are thinking about because that will inform our support. VP Furmanski
noted there are going to be many layoffs at the university; if their budget reductions include
layoffs, units may begin before July 1. Developing the budget reduction scenarios is an
iterative process; Furmanski has already sent back some of the plans he had received from the
units. The deadline is May 3 for budget reduction scenarios to Furmanski.
Budget Discussion – Gaunt
- Everyone was requested to prepare a plan for a 10% reduction in their combined salary and
below the line budget. All the plans were shared so that Cabinet would have a broad perspective
of what the budget cuts would entail. It is hard to imagine that the Libraries are in a more
flexible position than most of the other operating units of the university because we have 3
budget categories—salaries, below the line (operating), and collections. All the other units
only have 2 categories—salaries and below the line. We agreed to continue our general plan—take
major cuts as of July 1 in operating and collections funding; continue to freeze vacant
positions and do not renew annual faculty appointments. That will allow us to use the salary
savings on those positions to put towards the cut in operating and collections, and still keep
the lines for the time that budgets are in better shape. In the end we will take a cut of
$800,000 to collections, $391,000 to below the line, and $1,180,000 to salaries. Because the
time is extremely short to send in a reduction scenario that is very precise, we will do the
best we can with the 10% and reconfigure operations after Dr. Furmanski approves our budget
scenario. This will allow us to move into our reorganization as of July 1 and to realign
positions to support our future. In looking at our future, we determined that it would be
important to continue both some traditional operations (although we may do them differently) at
the same time we advance our development, such as implementing the new software we are acquiring
for such things as cross database searching, and to continue to build the repository. We cannot
afford to fall seriously behind on developing the library of the future after considerable
investment. We will not be implementing any budget reduction scenarios until we hear back from
Dr. Furmanski that our plan is approved. We will need also to look at how we wish to allocate
funds for travel, grants, exhibitions and outreach activities.