Minutes: January 22, 2009

MINUTES OF THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEETING OF ERINDALE COLLEGE COUNCIL, held on Thursday, January 22nd, 2009 at noon in room 3129, South Building.

Present: I. Orchard, A. Lange, R. Reisz, D. Kreuger, A. Wensley (in the Chair)
Regrets: J. Lim

The Executive Committee met to set the agenda for the January 29th, 2009 meeting of Erindale College Council. The Chair of each standing committee summarized recent business and identified items for possible inclusion on the next ECC agenda.
The Resource Planning and Priorities Committee met on January 19. Professor Reisz reported that the main items of business were the approval of the management reports and budgets for the four ancillary operations, and a discussion of the problem of incorrect parking tickets being issued.

With respect to the Food Services Management Report and Budget, Professor Reisz noted that the forecasted revenue for 2008-09 exceeded budget by about $568,000, as a result of increased cafeteria sales and meal plan revenue. Expenses exceeded budget by $95,000 due to renovations at a number of sites. The net operating result after transfers was a surplus of $187,000, with a closing total fund balance deficit of $72,000. The budget for 2009-10 represented a conservative financial plan, with forecasted revenue projected to increase by only 1% over this year’s budget. The effective rate of increase for residence student meal plans would be 2.3%. The Group B meal plan would increase by $300 to take advantage of the tax exemption. Expenses would increase with the addition of two new employees. The plans for next year included the revitalization of the South Building Meeting Place and the proposed addition to Colman Commons at Oscar Peterson Hall. The operating result after commitments was projected to be a surplus of $189,000, with a closing total fund balance surplus of $117,000.

With respect to the Residence Management Report and Budget, Professor Reisz reported that the forecasted residence operating deficit for 2008-09 was $225,000, $706,000 less than originally budgeted. This dramatic result had been achieved through a higher occupancy rate, higher summer occupancy, savings on salaries and benefits and increased commissions and other incomes. The total closing fund balance would show a deficit of $4.5 million, $1.1 million less than the budget plan. For 2009-10, the residence budget would be more aggressively aligned with the requirements for capital expansion. In 2007-08, the University had approved a plan whereby the ancillary’s annual operating budget would be in a surplus position in four years after the opening of Oscar Peterson Hall, and the total fund would be in a positive position 13 years after opening. The 2009-10 result would move the schedule ahead to reflect a surplus in the annual position in four years and in the total position in 9 years. The percentage increase in the residence fees for undergraduates, family and graduate students would all decrease from the 2008-09 levels. Residence rates would remain moderately competitive in comparison to off-campus accommodation.

With respect to the Conference Services Management Report and Budget, Professor Reisz reported that in 2008-09, conference services revenues were expected to be $153,000 higher than budgeted, but expenses would also be higher. However, the operating result before transfers would be a surplus of about $145,000. After a transfer of $350,000 to the operating budget, the total closing fund balance would be a surplus of $166,500. For 2009-10, the total projected revenue would remain consistent with the current year’s revenue. No growth was anticipated due to uncertain economic conditions. A number of new groups had committed to holding their events at UTM. Expenses were expected remain similar, but costs were variable and related proportionately to sales. The budgeted operating result before transfers was $118,000. With a planned transfer of $100,000 to the operating budget, the total closing fund balance for 2009-10 was expected to be $185,000.

And lastly, with respect to the Parking Services Management Report and Budget, Professor Reisz reported that revenues for 2008-09 were less than those budgeted despite an increase in the pay-and display revenue. Expenses were more than budgeted due to major maintenance expense and increased salaries, wages and benefits. The total operating results before transfers was a surplus of just over $4,000, a decrease from the budgeted surplus of $221,000. The total closing fund balance was $360,000, down from the budgeted amount of $948,000. For 2009-10, the parking budget would include a new “sessional” student permit, offered for 4-month or 8-month periods. It would be offered as a pilot project, and the Parking Services had budgeted a potential revenue loss of $20,000 due to a loss of summer permit revenue. There would be a modest 1% budgeted increase in revenues for pay and display, and no increase in parking fees for faculty, staff and students. Expenses would be the same as last year’s with the exception of $500,000 to install new light standards and resurface lot 5. There would also be $30,000 for snow removal. The net operating result after transfers was expected to be $60,000 with a budgeted total closing fund balance of $420,000. The Capital Renewal Reserve would remain at $300,000. At the previous meeting of Council, several members had raised the issue of tickets being given to students and staff who had the appropriate permits displayed on their dashboards. At the Resource Planning and Priorities Committee meeting, Mr. MacIsaac had provided an overview of the parking ticket process. The City of Mississauga, campus police and a UTM staff member could all issue tickets. The “first attendant system” to pay or challenge the ticket was explained on the back of the ticket. In the fall, there had been a rash of problems concerning incorrectly issued tickets. These issues had been resolved. Mr. MacIsaac continued to discuss the issue with the City. In 2008, 15,000 tickets had been issued, and a large number remained unpaid. There was no ticket appeal process on campus. He planned to discuss this also with the City and hoped that UTM might house a “first attendant system” on campus. He had agreed to report back to the Committee in the coming months.

On behalf of the Academic Affairs Committee, Professor Lange reported that at the January 19 meeting the Committee approved a motion, presented by Dean Gage Averill, that expanded the Primary/Junior Concurrent Teacher Education Program Option. Dean Averill proposed that UTM offer a Primary/Junior Concurrent Teacher Education Program (P/J CTEP) beginning in the Fall of 2010. It would allow a student, in five years, to obtain concurrently a BEd and an HBA or HBSc degrees. At present, UTM offers this program for students studying to be secondary school teachers only. The addition of this option would not affect staffing in the Department of Psychology since all required and recommended courses were already offered. Additional teaching assistants would be required for two of the CTEP courses, but that need already existed for 2009-10. The primary/junior option would provide students with strong backgrounds in child development, abnormal behaviour and exceptionality. The graduates of the program would receive the necessary academic preparation to include students with disabilities in general education classrooms. Dean Averill noted that in Ontario, there was a growing need for teachers of students with exceptionality. The new program option would be offered to students who were enrolled in the Psychology Major or Specialist program or the Exceptionality in Human Learning Major or Specialist program. Applications for the P/J CTEP option would be accepted from secondary school students who wished to enter directly into the program or from first-year university students interested in beginning the option in Year 2

Chief Information Officer Joe Lim reported that at the January 21 Computing Committee meeting, Mr. Bob Cook, the Chief Information Office, had reported on the challenges and priorities he had identified in assuming his new role. Mr. Lim also reported that Mr. Rishi Arora had provided an update on the Microsoft Exchange project. The third matter addressed by the Committee concerned proposed By-law changes. Mr. Lim noted that Mr. Kreuger had conducted an extensive review of the governance structure at UTM, and he had concluded that the Computing Committee had rarely fulfilled it original intended function of making policy recommendations on computing and information technology. The Committee had mostly been used to receive administrative reports and to discuss impending IT changes. Mr. Kreuger had recommended that the Computing Committee become a subcommittee of the Resource Planning and Priorities Committee. Mr. Lim reported that the Committee had voted in favour of accepting the proposed changes in principle, and would consider the revised Computing and IT subcommittee terms of reference at its next meeting.

The Vice-President and Principal noted that he would provide a brief report to Council.

The Chair proceeded to discuss the agenda of the December 11, 2008 meeting of Council. As agreed above, the Council meeting agenda would feature the reports from the Resource Planning and Priorities Committee, the Academic Affairs Committee, and the Vice-President & Principal. The agenda would also include motions for approval of the ancillary operation management reports and budgets, and the expansion of the primary/junior concurrent teacher education program.
Mr. Devin Kreuger, the Acting Director of Governance, reported that Ms. Hazlon Schepmyer from the UTM Alumni Association had approached him to ask to be added to the ECC agenda under New Business to provide Council with an update on the Association’s activities. The Executive Committee agreed that this was an excellent addition to the agenda.

The Executive Committee meeting adjourned at 1:00 p.m. (J. Lim / I. Orchard)