October 2006 meeting minutes

Minutes of the Pleasantville/Briarcliff
Administrative Staff Council Meeting



Wednesday, October 4, 2006

Butcher Suite, Kessel Campus Center, Pleasantville




·         Flu shots will be available in Pleasantville on Wednesday, November 8, 2006, from 12:00pm – 5:00pm, in the VIP Room of the Goldstein Health & Ftiness Center, at a cost of $25.00. Flu shots will be available in New York on Thursday, November 9, 2006, from 12:00pm – 5:00pm, in the Health Care office at 41 Park Row.


·         If you have not already done so, please join the Wellness Initiative Program, at http://www.wellnessresourcecenter.org, and participate in a confidential Health Risk Appraisal (HRA). In addition, Pat Kelly, Director, Employee Relations, asked the Pace community to send stories, regarding individual wellness initiatives that employees have taken, to her in Costello House (PLV).



Treasurer’s Report:


·           There is no report this month, as Heather Novak was unable to attend.


Committee Report:


q       Benefits Committee – No report this month. We still need to fill one vacancy.

q       Communications Committee – No report this month.

q       Faculty Council Representative* – Notes from the September Westchester Faculty Council meeting, which were shared at the special Administrative/Staff Council meeting on September 19, 2006, are included below. The next two Faculty Council meetings are closed to visitors.

q       Picnic Committee – A chairperson has not been identified. Please contact Peggy Caraccio if you are interested.

q       Service Committee – No report this month.



New Business:


Guest Speaker: Dennis MacDougall, Vice President, Facilities Management and Bill Link, Director, Facilities Management:


·         The University spends $5 ½ to $6 million annually for major projects. Unfortunately, there are more demands than there are funds available.


·         Some of the past major projects include: the Goldstein Health and Fitness Center, the installation of traffic lights at the bottom of Elm Road in Briarcliff and at Entrance 3 in Pleasantville, renovations to the North Hall and Martin Hall bathrooms, exterior repairs to and painting of Choate House, the Pleasantville campus water project, and the sprinkler installations.


·         Regarding Choate House – There is no evidence that the University is bound to retain its original (pink) color. However, because it is a historic building, Theresa Cichetti, Director, Architectural/Space Planning, had a shutter removed in an effort to reveal the original paint color. The building has now been restored. There will also be new signage.


·         Regarding the Pleasantville Campus Water Project – The Pleasantville campus now has the highest quality water in Westchester..


·         Current projects include improvements to the football field, security systems, and continued energy conservation.


·         Changes, involving the University’s contracted cleaning services, were recently implemented. Some of the changes included:

q       Introduction of day cleaning services to more areas.

q       Use of ultra-quiet vacuums and micro-fiber cleaning cloths.

q       Use of environmentally-friendly cleaning products.

q       Increased coverage by having a cleaner on duty when there are classes in session.


·         If there is a maintenance emergency, contact Security at X33400, or at (914) 773-3400. Security will contact Maintenance.


·         For routine service, submit a work order through TMA Talk. Access the Pace A – Z Index and select either “T” for “TMA Talk,” or “W” for “Work Orders (TMA Talk).”  There will only be charge-backs for special services, for example, painting an office when it is not really warranted.


·         Buildings and Grounds will defrost refrigerators; however, the requesting department has to make sure that the refrigerator is completely empty. The request should be entered through TMA Talk.


·         Each desk area should have a small blue recycling container. If not, let Bill Link know. At the end of the day, we should all be emptying our small bins into the larger bins in each area.


·         If anyone is experiencing problems with the maintenance services, he/she is asked to send an e-mail, describing the problem, to Bill Link at wlink@pace.edu.


·         Facilities Management and Security complete a quarterly inspection of the campuses. This report is sent to President Caputo.


·         The Council expressed its thanks to Lenny Craig, Campus Coordinator, and his staff for the wonderful work that they do on the Pleasantville campus.


·         Geoff Harter, University Judicial Compliance Officer for students, asked that we all pitch in to help students with disabilities by periodically checking the push pads at the entrances to some of the buildings. Although Security and Buildings and Grounds check the pads also, we can all help by testing the push pads and reporting those that are not working properly.



Discussion Regarding the September 29, 2006 Meeting with President Caputo:


·         A comment was made that the President was open, forthright, and non-defensive. He provided information about capital expenses, which had not been communicated previously.

·         The President stated that when a co-worker leaves the University, the others in the department are not obligated to assume his/her responsibilities. The reality is that this is not happening.

·         A question was raised regarding the average 2.5% merit increase. Was this also the average increase for the upper administration, including President Caputo? The perception is that the increases for the upper administration were much higher.

·         Some staff members have reported that their suggestions, for increasing enrollment, etc., have never been acknowledged by the person(s) to whom they were addressed. If the President is asking for suggestions, those making suggestions should be acknowledged in some way.

·         A comment was made that cuts should only be made in areas that do not directly impact student services. The upper administration should come back to the Council to tell us how the cuts have impacted the University overall.

·         A comment was made that the University should revisit the possibility of offering flexible schedules. However, we have to be aware that some departments, that provide direct service to students, for example, might not be able to participate. A suggestion was made that the University rethink the 9:00am – 5:00pm scheduling in some departments. Tuesday nights are very busy on campus, perhaps schedules can be shifted to accommodate later hours.

·         A comment was made that the University should revisit allowing compensatory time to all staff, particularly during this very strenuous time.

·         A comment was made that our enrollment problems are due to an unrealistic tuition. Why pay another consultant to compare us to other Universities that are not struggling?

·         The New York Administrative/Staff Council will be meeting with President Caputo next week. Their questions/concerns are very similar to the ones that the Westchester Council submitted. The plan is to schedule a joint meeting with the two Councils.

  • Dennis MacDougall offered to share some of the Council’s comments with the Executive Council. A comment was made that a representative from each Council should serve as a liaison to the Executive Council.
  • A comment was made that students are paying more, so we cannot give them less.


*NOTES FROM THE SEPTEMBER 15, 2006 FACULTY COUNCIL MEETING (which Karen Desantis shared with those who attended the special meeting of the Administrative/Staff Council on September 19, 2006):


President Caputo’s comments: