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March 5, 2010, Manzanita Conference Room

Committee Members Present:   Erik Andal, Lonnie Blansit, Peter Boklund (ASCC representative) Nancy Bull, Brian Greene, Evie Harris (ASCC representative), Wendy Hesse, Raelene Juarez, Michael Perez, Joan Smith, Austen Thibault (ASCC Director of Clubs), Mike Torok, Gene Womble

Committee Members Not Present: Elissa Creighton, Brian DeMoss, Dennis Gervin

Guest(s): Alexandra Campbell, Coni Chavez (recorder)

Approval of the minutes for the February 5, 2010 meeting of the College Council

It was moved, seconded (Erik Andal/Nancy Bull) and approved that the minutes of the February 5, 2010 meeting of the College Council be accepted as submitted.

2.   Review Planning Agenda

Dr. Smith explained that when an accreditation team visits a college, they come as an objective third party to validate the college’s self study, which has measured the college based on the accreditation standards.  While the budget may not allow colleges to continue on as business as usual, the college is still expected to maintain operations of a comprehensive California Community College.  With that, Columbia College’s Strategic Planning Process Cycle is critical to maintain.  Dr. Smith reviewed the Strategic Planning Process Cycle with Council members.  Further, she asked that Council members read the strategic planning piece in the Educational Master Plan and be prepared to discuss the Strategic Planning Process Cycle at the April meeting of the College Council.  Lastly, Dr. Smith explained that even with integrated planning processes in place, there may be times when emergency/immediate decisions must be made, as evidenced by the recent budget situation in the categorical areas (the 2009/2010 unexpected and severe cuts by the State).

3.   Grants

Discussion was held regarding how grants can be integrated and utilized by the College to provide a positive and sustainable, when needed, impact.  It was acknowledged that grants can serve an institution when there is a lack of state funding.  An example at Columbia College is the Title III grant which came about to expand distance education offerings and create a resource development office (grants and foundation).  The Title III grant application was discussed at College Council in its early stages and then went on for development and submission.  Dr. Smith explained the term “supplanting” as it relates to grants and clearly stated that it is an illegal practice.  Basically, in this context, supplanting is to use an existing employee to fill the position created by the grant and not fill behind that person’s original position.  Dr. Smith reported that over the winter holiday a TRIO grant was worked on.  As part of that grant, if Columbia was a successful recipient, a counseling position may be funded.    Therefore, with these two examples, it was acknowledged that the college can get program support, services and staff that would not otherwise be obtainable.  Further demonstrating a positive outcome of the Title III grant is how distance education classes will increase FTES and address space utilization issues as well as the initial success of the Foundation having secured approximately $60k for the OSHER scholarship program.  It was further explained by Dr. Smith, that while the process is to discuss grants at College Council prior to submission, sometimes an application submission period will not allow it—especially considering the College Council does not meet in the summer months.  And, while those situations come up, where College Council is not aware ahead of time and/or where the specific need is not identified in the program review or unit plan, a grant may still be considered if it is aligned with overall college planning, as was the case with the “green initiative” grant that allowed for the purchase of recycling containers, etc.

4.   Time, Place and Manner

This item was deferred to the April 2010 meeting of the College Council.

 5.   Accreditation Steering Committee

a.   Community Needs Assessment – It was reported that this assessment is in the very preliminary planning stages.  The current plan is that the survey will be accessible by the full community.

b.   Campus Climate Survey – Dr. Alexandra Campbell reported that a student survey has been developed.  This survey asks some of the same questions that were asked in the 1998 and 2004 surveys such that data can be compared.  To stay on task with the accreditation timeline, and to make the information available to standards committees, the student survey must be distributed in early April.  Data needs to be collected and analyzed so that it may be written into the self study.  Surveys are an important part of evidence—they can give a pulse on the college.  It was also reported that a faculty/staff survey is being considered for the summer or fall.  Any standards committees and areas are free to work with Dr. Campbell to incorporate data from the surveys into their piece of the self study.

      At the request of members of the College Council, Dr. Campbell will email the student survey to all College Council members for discussion at the April 2nd meeting.

b.   Book Vouchers for Students – It was reported that six book vouchers of $200 each will be available to the six students who serve on the standards committees for accreditation.  The college values the students’ time and participation.  Students interested in serving on a standards committee should talk with Doralyn Foletti.

 6.  Other Item(s)

a.   Parking Fee Increase Update – At the February 5th meeting of the College Council, the following information was provided.

“It was reported that a committee had been formed to discuss parking fees at the District/Modesto Junior College level with Columbia College staff invited based on job responsibility rather than constituency representation.  The committee was therefore not representative of the shared governance process and consequently Columbia College representatives halted the process.  It is the intention of the group to begin these discussions again; however, at Columbia College the topic will flow through the share governance process, beginning with the Safety Committee.”

It was reported that since that time, no new information was available.  This item will be discussed at the Safety Committee meeting scheduled in two weeks.

b.   Bus Options Update – At the February 5th meeting of the College Council, the following information was provided.

“The Tuolumne County Transit (TCT) presented options to the College for bus riders coming to the College, such as bus passes, discounts, etc.  Presently, however, the TCT has not provided estimated costs associated with these options—which could be $5k to $40.  While the College supports sustainability efforts, in the current budget times, the College would need to be informed about the costs before moving forward with any recommendations.  Discussion was held as to how the costs may be covered.  One way would be for the students to vote to assess a fee.  Another option would be to use parking fee funds; however, that fund is currently in the deficit.  It was agreed that any proposals on the topic would be presented to the Safety Committee and move through the College’s shared governance process.”

It was reported that since that time, no new information was available from Tuolumne County Transit or Calaveras County Transit.  Aside from the options being proposed by Tuolumne County Transit, it was reported that they would like to build a bus stop on Parott’s Ferry Road.  College students would need to make a connecting bus to come onto the college campus.

 c.   Campus Closures – Dr. Smith reminded College Council members that when a campus closure occurs, individuals are directed to acknowledge the phone tree communication and observe instructions given.

d.   Classified Staff Appreciation Breakfast – Dr. Smith commended Erik Andal, Academic Senate President, for his coordination of the Classified Staff Appreciation Breakfast that is scheduled for April 2nd.

7.   Budget Update

The budget savings plan listed below was distributed to each College Council member.  This budget savings plan is based on the district’s projected $12M shortfall and Columbia’s target reduction of $1.8M—which has been essentially met, save for approximately $4k.  The District budget is available online.  It was reported that Columbia made the cuts by not filling behind many vacant positions and it was acknowledged that the college cannot continue to operate like this for long.  Dr. Smith explained that vacancy savings for positions are at the retiring (exit) cost, plus benefits.  Typically, in the past, the District has given credit for replacement costs only (which is a lower rate).  Dr. Smith stated that she will be working with the Chancellor to discuss filling some positions and will have an update at the April meeting of the College Council.  Council members were reminded that mid-year cuts may be made by the State in May—these potential cuts may be affected by state politics.  Dr. Smith stated that she will contact college senate representatives over the summer, if needed.  Further, Dr. Smith reported that budget forums have not been held because no new information has come forward. 


Budget Savings Plan 2010/2011


Vacancy Savings


Psychology Instructor Vacancy



Speech Instructor Vacancy



Reprographic Tech Vacancy



Security Officer Vacancy   (Fund 11 Portion)



Admin Assistant (47.5%) Vacancy



Acct Technician Position Unfilled



Financial Aid Vacancy




Financial Aid - Fund 11 to 12 (BFAP)




Com Ed Mgr  Vacancy   (Fund 11 Portion)



Public Info Vacancy



Counselor Vacancy




Spanish Instructor Vacancy



Psychology Instructor Vacancy



Biology Instructor Vacancy





Program Reductions


Civic Engagement-Program Reduction



Part-time/Overload  Budget - Adj #1



Vacancy Savings Carry-Over FY10



Backfill Catagorical Shortfalls








Other FY10/11 Proposed Reductions


Vocational Education - Dept. Reduction



Arts & Sciences - Dept. Reduction



Inst Operations Division-Dept. Reduction



Part-time/Overload Budget-Adj #2



Oakdale Budget - Program Reduction



Baker Station Budget-Program Reduction



Calaveras Budget - Program Reduction



Supply/Equip. Offset to Lottery



Agency Offset














FY09 Carryover





* Under review for further savings


8.   Senate Reports/Updates

  1. Leadership Team Advisory Council – It was reported that the next meeting would be held on March 17th.

YFA – The YFA Vice President representing Columbia College, Gene Womble, reported that negotiations for the 2010-2011 year have begun—the contract is open and they are currently working on changes.  Further, Mr. Womble expressed his appreciation to the administration for their work on the budget and the open and informed communication that occurred throughout the process.

Student Senate – Student Senate leaders reported that the Student Center is very busy with students utilizing computer stations, etc.  Upcoming activities were announced: 3/22, March in March; 4/5, blood and bone marrow drive; 2nd or 3rd week of April, Earth Day BBQ; and, recently Peter Boklund coordinated a concert that was successful.  Discussion was held regarding a follow up to the graduation discussions held in spring and fall 2009 at College Council meetings.  The students committed to looking into completing a survey regarding graduation ceremony preferences as it relates to a combined or separate ceremony for degree recipients and certificate recipients.

Classified Senate – Lonnie Blansit, Classified Senate President, reported that the Classified Hiring Priorities Committee had moved forward a recommendation that was approved by the senate at their last meeting.  The senate will be refining the Classified Hiring Priorities procedure.

CSEA – CSEA representative for Columbia College, Wendy Hesse, reported that the CSEA representatives took a month respite after the time-intensive benefits issue that is now moving forward.  The CSEA has expressed its support for the 3/22 March in March and Ms. Hesse offered, on behalf of the CSEA, to assist the students in any way they could with their activity.  Ms. Hesse also reported that a health care reform advocacy training program with Marshall Ganz will be held and a petition signature drive for a simple majority budget passed on time was underway.

Academic Senate – Academic Senate leadership reported that an election for their executive seats was being held.  It was also reported that Chancellor Darnell had asked the Academic Senate to work on program reduction – a committee of the past president council will consider the request and bring forward a recommendation to the Academic Senate.  Meanwhile, the Academic Senate has approved procedures to handle orphaned programs.