UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH ALABAMA FACULTY SENATE
February 5, 1992
Present: Ayling, Bastian, Bhatnagar, I. Brown, Bunnell, Bush, Daigle, Downey, Fisher, Fishman, Forbus, Gartman, Gaubatz, Goodman, Hamid, Holmes, Husain, Isphording, Kovaleski, Lloyd, Longenecker, Mankad, Moore, Patten, Raburn, Sakornbut, Schehr, Shearer, Strange, VanDevender, Vinocur, Vinson, Glenn Wilson, Winkler, Wright
Excused: Aldes, Bradley, Dempsey, Jenkins, Newman, Sikes, Silver, Wilhite, Zimmerman
Unexcused: Abee, Agapos, Bass, C. Brown, deShazo, Evans, Hood, Kulkarni, Luterman, Morisani, Springston, Wall, Gerald Wilson
Dr. Larry Holmes called the meeting to order at 3:00 p.m. He called attention to the Chair's Report (attached) and noted that the results of the Faculty Survey, distributed recently, reflect some perceived problems that could help set future Senate agenda.
Dr. Caryl Lloyd announced a meeting of the Arts and Sciences Caucus, February 11, at 4:00 p.m., to discuss the new policies proposed for graduate admissions.
Dr. Larry Schehr announced that the Salary and Fringe Benefits Committee would meet on February 19, at 3:00 p.m. in room 5 of the University Library.
Dr. Holmes introduced the topics under consideration with the following comments:
I want to thank the Senate's Policy and Handbook Committee for its diligent effort in bringing these important resolutions before the Faculty Senate. It is particularly noteworthy that the rather delicate matter of election procedures and the proposed constitutional amendment are sensitively framed.
As these resolutions indicate, it is not the committee's intent nor, I believe, is it the Senate's intent in considering them to close off in any way whatsoever communication with vice-chairs or chairs of departments or with any other administrator. It has been a hallmark of the Senate's operation this year to maintain and open further lines of communication with the administration at all levels. The Senate's chair is prepared to meet with any and all administrators at any time. All Senate meetings are open. If and when appropriate, this body can be addressed formally by any member of the university community. These policies will continue regardless of our decisions today.
All three items on the agenda are in the form of a motion, moved and seconded by the Policy and Handbook Committee. They will be considered in the order they appear on the agenda.
The Senate's University Policy and Handbook Committee moves the adoption of the Faculty Senate Election Procedures, distributed at the January 15, 1992 meeting of the Faculty Senate (SR91-7).
Dr. Ellen Sakornbut, speaking for the College of Medicine Caucus, asked for the following 'friendly changes' to the procedure:
Item 5: Add a statement that all nominations be accompanied by a second.
Item 5: Add a statement allowing a faculty assembly or other faculty organization to make nominations.
Item 8: Change the word "shall" to the word "may" in the first sentence.
Item 10: Modify the first sentence to specify the kinds of issues over which the committee would have a final decision.
The Policy and Handbook Committee accepted the first change requested to Item 5. Each nomination is to be accompanied by a second.
The Committee did not accept the request to allow any organizational group of faculty to make nominations. Dr. Gartman stated the procedure's purpose was to insure that elections were open without the possibility of control by any group. Dr. Downy noted that there should be a way to insure sufficient nominations to fill the number of vacancies, otherwise a college or division might come up short. Dr. Sakornbut stated that nominations from the College of Medicine Faculty Assembly would not carry more weight than any other nomination. Dr. Mankad said that the College of Medicine Faculty Assembly, composed of only faculty and run by the faculty, had been known to reject slates presented by its officers. Presentation by its officers of a slate of Faculty Senate nominations would not mean that the elections were being controlled. Another senator noted that the College of Medicine Faculty Assembly could make the nominations in an individuals name, although this procedure might give the impression of impropriety. The College of Medicine Faculty Assembly could be a forum for soliciting nominations. If the officers of that group presented a slate and other nominations were made from the floor all nominations should be forwarded to the Faculty Senate Election Committee. The question was called and the request for the change was defeated 17 to 7.
After some discussion regarding the requested change in Item 8, the consensus was to leave the word "shall" in order to insure an open forum for candidates to introduce themselves. Such introductions were regarded as important in the larger colleges and divisions because all faculty do not know each other. If a nominee is unable to attend the meeting a statement could be read on his behalf.
Consensus was reached on the wording of Item 10 to insure that the Faculty Senate Election Committee would have the final word on procedural issues and all other issues would be referred to the Faculty Senate as a whole.
Geneva Bush expressed a concern that the time period designated for nominations was not long enough as Senators at the Spring Hill Avenue Campus (SHAC) have repeatedly complained of slow mail service. Consensus was reached on changing the timing between Item 4 and Item 5 to a 14 day period instead of the recommended 10 day period.
The question was called and the vote was unanimous to accept the procedures for Faculty Senate Elections as corrected (Attached).
PROPOSED AMENDMENT TO THE FACULTY SENATE CONSTITUTION
The Senate's University Policy and Handbook Committee moves the adoption of the following proposed amendment to the Faculty Senate Constitution, distributed at the January 15, 1992 meeting of the Faculty Senate (SR91-8):
"Each member of the Faculty Senate shall be an eligible faculty member. The term eligible faculty member applies to anyone who has the rank of Lecturer, Instructor, Assistant, Associate or Full Professor, and who normally teaches six or more credit or contact hours per quarter, or who performs equivalent duties. This is to include Librarians, but not to include administrative faculty such as Chairperson, Vice-chairperson, Director of Libraries, Director of Biomedical Library and above. All Faculty members may vote in Senatorial elections."
Dr. Winkler asked, on behalf of the College of Medicine Caucus, to have this motion withdrawn, stating that adoption of new election procedures satisfied the need for this amendment. Dr. Gartman reported that the Policy and Handbook Committee felt that the group of faculty excluded from Senate membership by this amendment would experience as senators a conflict of interest brought on by their dual role of faculty and administrator. Other forums exist for their participation in the decision making process of this institution. Dr. Goodman, a department chairperson elected to the Senate from the College of Medicine, explained that the faculty of the College wanted him to serve and that the process was not influenced by the administration. He asked why take away his privilege of serving his College as a Senator. Dr. Moore stated that chairs and vice-chairs could bring a different perspective to Senate discussions; they might have new information to bring to the Faculty Senate. Dr. Lloyd reminded the Senate that rules are not made for virtuous people and that there would always be the opportunity for conflict of interest. Dr. Fishman, after asking if the institution was not in a era of seeking decentralized decision making, said that the Faculty Senate should consist of people without any other avenue for participation in institutional governance. Dr. Patton asked that we not allow 'double-dipping', when individuals have two voices in the process. Dr. Schehr stated that the Senate should be representative of the faculty, not the administration. Dr. Goodman reported that he has not felt any pressure by administration to vote a certain way on any Senate issue. Dr. Winkler asked why not also exclude people in positions such as residency and program directors, pointing out that the list could be expanded ad infinitum.
The question was called and the motion to adopt the proposed amendment to the Faculty Senate Constitution passed with 20 votes in favor, 10 votes opposed and 2 abstentions.
STATEMENT ON "ACADEMIC FREEDOM AND ARTISTIC EXPRESSION"
The Senate's University Policy and Handbook Committee moves the adoption of the "Academic Freedom and Artistic Expression" statement, distributed at the January 15, 1992 meeting of the Faculty Senate (SR91-7).
Dr. Gartman said that this statement came from the faculty of the Art Department to Dr. Holmes. Dr. Holmes asked the University Policy and Handbook Committee to consider it and then bring it to the Faculty Senate.
When asked what would be done with it if passed, Dr. Gartman replied that he hoped that it would become University policy and be included in the Faculty Handbook.
The questioned was called and the motion adopted with 23 votes in favor and 3 abstentions.
A called meeting of the Faculty Senate will be held February 26, 1992, in Room 5 of the Library at 3:00 p.m. Topics of discussion will be MLK Day, Library acquisitions, the freeze on recruitment, policies on graduate admission, and the monitoring of the Board of Trustees.
The meeting was adjourned by Dr. Sakornbut at 4:14 p.m.
Geneva L. Bush, Secretary
FACULTY SENATE ELECTION PROCEDURES
Adopted 2/5/92 by SR91-7