YSU Board of Trustees, Sept. 24, 2015

YouYSU Color Sealngstown State University
Board of Trustees
Thursday, Sept. 24, 2015

The following is a summary of the YSU Board of Trustees’ regular quarterly meeting in the Trustees Meeting Room on the first floor of Tod Hall. For more details, including full texts of the resolutions and policies, click here.

Chair Carole Weimer acknowledged the passing of Teri Riley, senior associate provost, and thanked her for her many years of service to the YSU community. She called for a moment of silence in Dr. Riley’s memory.

Oath of Office for New Student Trustee, Samantha P. Anderson.

President’s report: President Jim Tressel reported that the Fall semester is off to a good start, with great energy on campus and everyone working to build upon past accomplishments.

The Board approved the following resolutions:

Academic Quality and Student Success
Resolution to Modify Cost-Sharing and Overmatching on External Grants and Contracts. The resolution includes minimal changes in the policy to align with the new office responsible for grants, to align with the new numbering system of university policies and to indicate the time for the next review of the policy.

Resolution to Modify Payment of Indirect Costs on External Grants and Contracts Policy. Same as above.

Resolution to Modify Disposition of Residual Funds from External Grants and Contracts. Same as above.

Resolution to Approve Master of Accountancy (MAcc) Program. Over the last decade, accounting and finance students in the region have become attracted to and are demanding graduate programs that focus on increasingly sophisticated aspects of accounting and/or finance beyond those offered in the MBA degree. The ability to attract and retain such students in the MBA program is becoming more difficult because students desire curricula that emphasize tax, public accounting, corporate accounting and financial planning. After administering surveys and holding follow-up interview sessions with students, the university recognizes the need to supply graduate students with a curriculum that expands their accounting and finance knowledge while allowing them to meet the minimum qualifications to sit for professional exams.

Resolution to confer an honorary Doctor of Laws degree on U.S. Sen. Rob Portman at Fall commencement.

Institutional Engagement
Resolution to Modify WYSU Policy. The modifications reflect changes in university divisions and positions and updates broadcast information.

Resolution to Modify Alcoholic Beverages on Campus Policy. The modifications reflect changes in university divisions and also details specific permits and university procedures associated with the policy.

Resolution to Accept Alumni Engagement and WYSU Gifts. The resolution accepts 2,135 gifts from university Alumni Society and WYSU members totaling $296,392 through the fourth quarter of Fiscal Year 2015.

Resolution to Accept Development Gifts. The resolution accepts gifts totaling $1.53 million dollars for the period April through June 2015.

Resolution to Approve New University Wide Naming Menu and College Specific Naming Menus. Per university policy, the Board of Trustees may name physical spaces on campus in recognition of donor philanthropy or service to the university. To ensure campus wide consistency in namings, a primary university naming menu has been created.

Resolution to Approve New Donor Recognition Giving Levels. YSU and the YSU Foundation seek to establish “society” levels to recognize donors at various levels of major philanthropy.

Resolution to Approve YSU Foundation Development Goals and Objectives for the Fiscal Year 2015-2016. Per the agreement between the university and the YSU Foundation, the Foundation must submit an annual development plan to the YSU Board of Trustees. The plan includes a goal of $16 million in cash, pledges and planned gift commitments, which would represent the most philanthropic revenue generated in one year in the history of YSU and the YSU Foundation.

Finance and Facilities
Resolution to Modify Memberships, Dues, Certifications, and Licensing Fees Policy. The policy defines the types of organizations with which the university may and may not subscribe to through membership, certification and/or licensure. The policy requires that such memberships should generally be institutional and directly benefit the university. There are two material additions: a stipulation that only one institutional membership in a particular organization may be purchased, and a requirement that the office initiating a memberships must pay all applicable fees.

Resolution to Modify University Facilities-Use, Priorities, and Fees Policy. The policy establishes general protocol for the use of campus facilities by organizations, both internal and external. Substantive changes have been made, most notably to the prioritization of facility use. Whereas the previous version established multiple sets of priorities for different facilities, the updated policy includes a single institution-wide set of priorities. Using a standard set of priorities will result in more efficient administration and is consistent with best practices in higher education.

Resolution to Approve a Plan to Provide Students the Opportunity to Reduce the Cost of Earning a Degree by 5 percent. The current state budget bill requires that Board of Trustees of each public institution implement a plan to provide all undergraduate students the opportunity to reduce their student costs of earning a degree by 5 percent. Among the initiatives cited by YSU to reduce the cost of earning a degree: expanding the tuition bulk rate from the current 12-16 credit hours to 12-18 credit hours, which could reduce the cost of attaining a degree by 4.6 percent; and reducing the number of credit hours to earn a bachelor’s degree from 124 to 120, reducing the cost of attaining a degree by 1.5 percent.

Resolution to Designate PNC Bank as the Official Depository for University Funds. YSU’s existing five-year contract with JP Morgan Chase expires Sept. 30, 2015. This past spring, YSU issued a request for proposals. Three banks submitted qualified proposals – JP Morgan Chase, Huntington and PNC. An internal selection committee reviewed the proposals and unanimously recommended PNC. Neal McNally, vice president for Finance and Operations, accepted the recommendation, based on PNC’s experience in the higher education market (96 campus nationwide, including 10 in Ohio), PNC’s ability to meet all qualifications in the RFP, a competitive free structure estimated at $47,000 annually, and other financial commitments made by PNC.

Resolution to Improve Interfund Transfers. The university’s operating performance for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2015, resulted in a net positive fund balance of $271,185. Transfers from reserves totaling $4.4 million are requested to close the general fund deficit; and transfers to reserves totaling $3.3 million are requested to carry-forward excess balances in certain fee-based funds. In addition, the university covers annual bond debt service with a combination of current year operating funds and debt service reserves, including gifts. The FY 2016 debt service obligation is $4.9 million, net of $0.5 million federal interest subsidy on the 2010 Bond Series. Four transfers totaling $1.8 million from debt service reserve funds are being requested.

University Affairs
Resolution Regarding Terms and Conditions of Employment for Classified Employees Exempt from Collective Bargaining. The resolution makes a minor correction to a previously approved resolution.

Resolution to Modify and Retitle Emeritus Status Policy. The policy was revised to clarify the process for obtaining approval of a recommendation for emeritus status and to make clear that tuition remission would be available in accordance with the level of the benefit at the time of application and in accordance. with the policy of fee remission.

Resolution to Modify Drug-Free Environment Policy. The policy was modified to make it consistent with changes to the collective bargaining agreements and universally approved testing site requirements. Other modifications include adding student organizations and volunteers into the scope and defining the type of testing to include pre-employment and random testing for safety-related employees. It also orders reasonable suspicion testing for all employees. The policy also reiterates the requirement for notifying the university of an alcohol- or drug-related conviction.

Resolution to Ratify Personnel Actions. The resolution includes 42 appointments (11 new and 31 replacement), 49 separations, 12 reclassifications, 29 promotions, seven transfers and eight salary adjustments.

Resolution to Approve The Memorandum of Understanding Between the Attorney General of Ohio and Youngstown State University Regarding the Provision of Legal Services of the University. Under state law, the Ohio Attorney General is the chief legal officer of YSU and has ultimate responsibility for rendering legal services to the university. The MOU defines the relationship between YSU and the AG regarding provision of legal services and representation to the university.


Meetings: The Board set the following tentative dates for regular meetings of the Board: Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2015; 3 p.m., Wednesday, March 16, 2016; 3 p.m. Wednesday, June 15, 2016.