February 2016 Meeting Minutes

Board of Trustees Meeting Minutes

February 12, 2016

The Northark Board of Trustees met in regular session Thursday, February 12, 2016, in the Bennie Ellis Board Room. Chair Scott Miller called the meeting to order at 2.59 p.m. Trustees Kirk Campbell, David Evans, Bill Lovell, Matt Miller, Dr. Marcus Jones, Jim Milum were present.

Trustees Sara Jo Fendley and Jane Adair were absent.

Northark personnel attending included Dr. Jackie Elliott, Don Sugg, Dr. Michael Wiggins, Dr. Rodney Arnold, Katie Vaughn, Jamie Stevens, Stacie Klott, Charla Jennings, Iris Roe, Michelle Palmer, John Gripka, Micki Somers, Cindy Mayo, Kris Greening, Sarah Bing, Kristin Griffin, Don Tomlinson and Cheryl Keymer. Lee Dunlap and David Holsted represented the Harrison Daily Times. Russell Larimore was also in attendance.

Approval of Agenda
Chair Scott Miller requested a motion to approve the agenda. Trustee Matt Miller made a motion to approve the agenda, which was seconded by Trustee Campbell and passed unanimously.

Regular Reports:

Employee Benefits Report
Kris Greening reported on the benefit ratio charts for FY14/15. Northark trended slightly higher for FY14/15 at 37.8% than in FY13/14 at 36.2%. Participation in the AHEC consortium was discussed. In 2015 all consortium participants paid a 13th month of premiums, which contributed to the increase in the FY14/15 ratio. Don explained that Northark’s 8% increase was less than many other colleges’ experiences 10-20% increases. There was discussion about the employee-paid portion versus the Northark-paid portion of the premiums which is 88% Northark and 12% employees. It was noted that the monthly pre $137,000 a month. Kris also stated that staff totals are 49% full-time and 51% part-time head count.

Finance Report
Don reviewed reports through January 31, 2016. Revenue reported included spring enrollment. It was noted that current revenue projections indicate that the College may need to reduce expenses by approximately $273,000, in order to end fiscal year 2014-2015 with the planned net gain for reserves. The auxiliary budget was reviewed which is projecting a positive year-end balance.

President’s Report
A clip from the KY3 television broadcast featuring the greenhouse and the sale of produce to Neighbor’s Mill was viewed. Student Activities Coordinator Sarah Bing reviewed the number of visitors to Pete’s Pantry and discussed the benefits of the food pantry to students. She noted that monetary donations should be given to the Northark Foundation and designated for Pete’s Pantry.

Approval of Consent Agenda
Chair Scott Miller requested a motion to approve the Consent Agenda which included the January minutes, Special January meeting minutes, and the Presidential job qualifications. Trustee Lovell made a motion to approve the agenda, which was seconded by Trustee Jones and passed.

Monitoring Reports:

6.4 Average Class Size
Dr. Wiggins reviewed the average class size trends at Northark trend compared to the National Community College Benchmark Project median. Northark has consistently trended below the NCCBP average and has a target of at or slightly above the national average. He noted that the Academic Efficiency Improvement Plan consisting of course scheduling and other efficiency strategies is one strategy being used to improve the class size. Chair Miller requested a motion to accept the monitoring report. Trustee Campbell moved to accept, Trustee Evans seconded the motion, and the motion passed.

New Business

Energy Audit: Don presented the process used for selecting the Energy Audit contract. He discussed that an Energy Performance Contract is a tool to finance energy efficient upgrades such as lighting, chillers, boilers, water systems, window replacements, etc. He noted that should the audit and project proposal fail to provide cost savings to cover all cost (audit fee, project cost and financing, and any monitoring and maintenance cost), the College is not required to pay anything.  If the ESCO determines during the audit that no savings can be attained, the ESCO will cease and Northark is not obligated for the audit contract amount. Trustee Milum moved to approve, Trustee Lovell seconded, and the motion passed.

Curriculum Changes – A.S. Education – Reconfiguration of Existing Degree Program
Dr. Wiggins discussed that the A.S.E degree program is replacing the A.A.T. program. For an A.S in Education to become a degree the program had to be reconfigured to better align with 2+2 partners and ensure transferability of credits. It was discussed that the change to the degree plan was recommended by Arkansas Department of Higher Education. Trustee Milum moved to approve and Trustee Campbell seconded.

Curriculum Changes – A.S. Liberal Studies – New Degree Program
Dr. Wiggins introduced a new degree as an A.S in Liberal Studies with three areas of emphasis, which include addiction studies, health science administration, and health education. It was discussed that the degree could be implemented without additional staff. There was discussion that a new program may increase enrollment. Trustee Jones made a motion to approve the degree as presented and Trustee Lovell seconded. Motion passed.

Appointment of Commencement Awards Committee
Chair Miller appointed the Commencement Awards Committee consisting of Trustee Matt Miller, Trustee Fendley, and Trustee Lovell, as the committee chair. A recommendation will be presented to the board at the March meeting. 

Board Comments
There being no further business, Chair Scott Miller requested a motion to adjourn, which was made by Trustee Campbell, seconded by Trustee Milam, and carried. The meeting adjourned at 4:06 p.m.

Chair Miller

Submitted by Kristen Griffin