President/Superintendent's Blog

Summary of the June 4, 2019 College of the Redwoods Board of Trustees Meeting

Published on 6/4/2019.

Comments/Board Business

Approve Gann Appropriations Limit for 2019-20: The Trustees approved our Gann Appropriations Limit for 2019-20. The appropriations subject to limit consists primarily of projected state apportionment and projected local property tax revenue. Per Government code 7902.1, when a Community College District exceeds its Gann limit, that College shall provide notification to the Department of Finance. Our appropriations subject to limit is $1,251,731 less than the 2019-20 appropriations limit projected by the state apportionment and property tax revenue.

General Public Comments: Community member Mr. Jorey McComas commented that there's a growing support in the community to build a pool on the Eureka campus.

Member Comments: Trustees Kelley, Mathews, Dorn, Diester, Mullery, Biggin, and Emad commented on the various commencement exercises, the Nurses Pinning, and the Multicultural Student graduation event. The Trustees acknowledged the work the staff put in on the ceremonies.

Appoint a Board of Trustees Member as a Mentor for Student Trustee: President of the Board Emad appointed Trustee Mathews as a mentor for the Student Trustee Christine Peters.

Appoint Trustees to An Ad Hoc Committee on President’s Compensation: Trustees Dr. Mullery and Mathews will join Trustee Biggin on an ad hoc committee to look at my compensation.

Trustee travel: The Board approved travel to the ACCT Leadership Conference on October 16-19, 2019 in San Francisco, the CCLC Annual Convention on November 21-23, 2019 in Riverside Convention Center, and the Student Trustees Workshop on August 16-18, 2019 in San Diego. Trustees Emad, Mullery, Biggin, Deister, and Kelley expressed interest in attending the ACCT Leadership Congress and Trustee Dorn expressed interest in attending the CCLC Annual Convention. The Trustees will discuss what they learned at the conference and convention at a future Board meeting.

Board Advocacy: Community colleges are activity involved in advocacy. Our Trustees understand that we need to make legislators aware of the impact that their decisions may have on our programs, students, staff, faculty, and community. At this meeting, the Board engaged in a discussion related to potential advocacy points that we want to focus on moving forward. Here’s a short list of the areas of focus:

  1. Fully funding the Student Centered Funding Formula in 2019-20;
  2. Contracting with current California Community Colleges to deliver online courses to fill the need created by the new online community college;
  3. Rejecting the proposed growth cap;
  4. Using a three‑year rolling average for funding purposes; and
  5. Providing state and/or federal funding to improve campus safety.

President Emad, Vice President Dr. Mullery, and I are going to speak to Assemblymemember Jim Wood and Senator McGuire as soon as possible.

Status on Board of Trustees Requests: Cynthia and I provide an update on the status of the Trustees’ informational requests at the Board table at each meeting. However, the Trustees and I decided to make the update public since the requests were made publically.

Consent Calendar Action Items

Approve/Ratify Personnel Actions: By Board action, we welcome one new member to our community and say goodbye to two classified staff colleagues.  Steve McKenzie will begin his service as the new Director of Facilities and Planning on June 17, 2019.  Emma Cardono (Student Services Specialist II – Counseling) and Tasha Kahoalii (Alternate Media Specialist – DSPS) will leave us this month.

Three colleagues changed their employee status.  Heidi Bareilles moved from Assistant Director, EOPS to Assistant Director, Upward Bound effective June 1, 2019. Jordan Hamill remained as the Director of Residential and Campus Life but moved from Range 125, Step 4 to Range 125, Step 10 effective July 1, 2019 due to reorganization of Public Safety and Residential Life.  Jordan assumed additional duties related to student conduct and Title IX compliance.  Burk McBride moved from the Manager of General Services to the Assistant Director, Campus Life. The total compensation for all three employees will be paid from categorical or auxiliary funds.

We also welcome ten new associate faculty to the District. Amy Campbell-Blair (Interdisciplinary – Basic Skills: Noncredit), Holly Meyer-Zlokovich (Interdisciplinary – Basic Skills: Noncredit), and Jana Rivers-Norton (English) will join the Del Norte faculty community next year. Joining our Eureka faculty community next year will be Gordon Griswold (Business), Gabriel Holtski (Biology), Jamie Jackson (Biology), Haley Jones (Psychology), Laura Lane (English), Armeda Reitzel (Communication Studies), and Austin Roberts (Philosophy).

Approve/Ratify Contracts, Agreements, MOUs: The Trustees approved or ratified several contracts, agreement, and MOUs. I want highlight two of the agreements included in this agenda item.  I signed a contract with Fred Struner and Associates to provide project and construction management services for our capital projects. I asked Fred to manage the planning and construction of the Creative Arts building and UIR projects to completion. I asked him to help us address the Old Library project.

The Board also ratified the contract with MBS Direct (Barnes and Noble) to provide online bookstore services. It’s important to note that the Foundation Board of Directors approved the contract at their May 15 Foundation Board meeting.

Action/Discussion Items

Approve Emeritus Faculty Nominations: The Board granted Faculty Emeritus status to retired Professor Susan Nordlof.  Professor Nordlof was a professor of English for over twenty years as a full-time Professor of English, and before that, seven years as an Associate Faculty member.

Professor Nordlof’s accomplishments include:

  • Co-Coordinator of the Honors Program
  • English Department Chair
  • Curriculum Chair
  • Faculty Assessment Coordinator
  • Chair of Ad Hoc Senate GE committee
  • Member of the following committees: Curriculum, Academic Standards & Policies, Academic Senate, CRFO Executive Committee, Tenure Review Committee, Academic Appeals Committee, and more special Ad Hoc Committees and Evaluation Committees
  • Twenty-year association with The Dickens Project, a scholarly consortium based at UC Santa Cruz
  • Board member on the Friends of the Dickens Project with a focus on promoting the importance of the community college and CR students in the California higher education community
  • Co-collaborator on establishing the annual Dickens Universe Community College Scholarship
  • Regional representative for The English Council of California Two-Year Colleges

Monthly Financial Status Report:  Our financial status report covered 83.33% of the fiscal year. Our revenue is at 72.9% of the budgeted amount and our total expenditures are at 84.5% of the budgeted amount. This report continued to show a projected 2018-19 ending fund balance of 5.5%.

Approve the 2019-20 Tentative Budget: We asked the Board to approve a tentative budget that allows us to start spending with the beginning of the fiscal year.  Our 2019-20 Final Budget will be presented to the Board on September 10, 2019 once the Legislature and the Governor reach agreement on the State budget.

Julia and I are continuing to take a conservative approach to our budget planning since we will not know what to expect in terms of revenue from the State until September. That said, what we do know is that the Governor’s May Revised Budget Proposal included changes to the Student Centered Funding Formula (SCFF).  Current legislation phases the SCFF in over three years.  In 2018-19 the percentages are currently 70% FTES, 20% Supplemental, and 10% Student Success; in 2019-20 they would be 65% FTES, 20% Supplemental, and 15% Student Success, in 2020-21 they would be 60% FTES, 20% Supplemental, and 20% Student Success.  The Governor has proposed to maintain the 2018-19 levels through 2019-20.  The Governor has also proposed a 10% growth cap on Student Success.

Current legislation also provides for the Hold Harmless provision for Districts for the first three years of the SCFF.  It has been proposed to extend the Hold Harmless provision for one additional year.  The Hold Harmless provision is 2017-18 Total Computational Revenue (TCR) plus COLA.  The COLA in 2018-19 is 2.71%, and the assumed COLA for 2019-20 is 3.26% (as per the Governor’s May Revise).  Districts are to receive the higher of either the SCFF or Hold Harmless revenue amounts, however, the State may not be able to fully fund the SCFF. 

Given the uncertainty of the State’s ability to fully fund the SCFF, we decided to use the Hold Harmless revenue amount to build the 2019-20 Tentative Budget. If the State is able to fully fund the SCFF and our assumptions are accurate, then the District could potentially receive up to $788,896 in additional revenue.

I included a copy of the 2019-20 Tentative Budget document to this blog article in case you want to see the details.

Approve Resolution 732: District Police Department:  I asked the Board to approve a resolution that allows me to take reasonable steps to establish a District Police Department. I know that this is a big step for our District. However, given the rise in active shootings on college campuses we have to do more to safeguard the health and safety of our faculty, staff, students, and visitors to our campus.

College of the Redwoods will join several other California Community Colleges in establishing a police department. Butte-Glenn, Cerritos, Cuesta, Chaffey, Contra Costa, Foothill DeAnza, Marin, Merced, Pasadena, San Jose-Evergreen, Santa Monica, Santa Rosa, Sequoias, and State Center have police departments.

I intend to create a hybrid police department that has both sworn police officers and public safety officers over the next year. The armed officers will be available when classes are in session. Our public safety officers will cover day, evening and weekend hours.

I am going to wait until students and faculty are back on campus before screening potential applications for the police chief.  Why wait? Simply put, I believe that it is extremely important that we have faculty and students involved in identifying the new police chief to lead the department.  

First Read of Board Policies and Administrative Procedures: Administrative Procedure 6620 Naming of Facilities and Properties was pulled. President of the Board Emad appointed Trustees Kelley and Dorn to serve on an ad hoc committee with him to work on AP 6620.

Approve the 2019-29 Facilities Master Plan: Bob Brown and Cathy Cox discussed the comprehensive revised facility master plan. Thank you to Facilities Planning Committee members Bob Brown (Co-Chair); Cathy Cox (Co-Chair); Bert Hafer (faculty); Danny Walker (faculty); Sean Patton (classified staff); Elisa Abeillera (classified staff); Serenity Wood (ASCR); Burk McBride (ex-officio), and Alison Hodges (ex-officio) for drafting the plan. The plan as included in this article.

Informational Reports

Financial Aid - Dean Rianne Connor: Rianne Connor, Dean of Enrollment Services, gave an extremely thorough information report to the Trustees relative to the work of our Admissions and Financial Aid departments. I included Rianne’s power point presentation and a copy of the data sheet she provided to the Trustees in this blog.

Tiny House Project - Dean Kerry Mayer: Dean Kerry Mayer and faculty members Danny Walker and Jerry Goodrow, provided a wonderful summary of the innovative tiny house project.

Accreditation Update - Dr. Angelina Hill, Accreditation Liaison Officer (ALO): Representatives of the Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) performed a regularly scheduled comprehensive site visit for the Basic Course Certification Review last month. The Team was extremely pleased with CR's programs and commended Ron Waters and Sandi Petersen for several exemplary practices. The Team was particularly impressed with how the CR program teaches students about their recollection of situations.

Commencement Report: Molly Blakemore provided a great informational report about our commencement exercises. It’s my pleasure to include her summary in this article:

College of the Redwoods awarded approximately 800 total degrees and/or certificates of achievement to 628 different students throughout the CR District during four separate commencement ceremonies. 146 first generation college students graduated and CR awarded approximately 100 Associate Degrees for Transfer.

At the Eureka ceremony, Dr. Peter Blakemore recognized retiring faculty members Steve Brown, Susan Nordlof and Michael Richards and thanked the graduating class for being “our bridges to the future.”

Valedictorian Robert Airth delivered the commencement address, thanking his CIS and Math professors for inspiring him with their “never-ending passion for teaching”, and urging his fellow classmates never to settle in their pursuit of personal growth. The salutatorian, Cicely Suhayda led the room in the pledge of allegiance.

In Friday’s ceremony in Del Norte, a total of 82 degrees and/or certificates were awarded and Educational Director Rory Johnson addressed the graduates, stating, “education requires us to be exposed to different viewpoints, different backgrounds, different values, and different ideas, and that prepares us to be more functional in the real world – where we are surrounded by diverse ideas, and people.”

At the CR Klamath-Trinity Instructional Site, students were awarded 31 degrees and/or certificates and Outstanding Scholar Angela Jarnaghan reminded students that “success is walking into any environment and taking every opportunity to learn” and that “many things in our lives are beyond our control, but education and success are never beyond our reach.”

Many students also attended Thursday evening’s Multicultural Graduation Ceremony. This is the second year for the ceremony, which is held to express appreciation for the achievements, commonalities, and cultural differences that characterize the experiences of our diverse students.

The CR Registered Nursing Program honored its graduates in a special ''Pinning ceremony'' on Saturday at 2 p.m. where Nursing Faculty Sally Urban and Ann Sullivan welcomed the graduates and introduced graduate speakers Beatriz Cortes-Garcia and Alexandria Harris.

Ms. Ann Sullivan provided some very interesting statistics about the Nursing class of 2019 that I want to share:

  • Fifty one students graduated in this class.
  • The average age of the graduates was 36--ranging from 24-51.
  • Twenty nine students were married or with partners and 22 were single.
  • Twenty nine students had children ranging from 4 days old to 32 years old. Two students had 6 children each.
  • Thirty eight students held part-time jobs while studying in the program. This included waiting tables, ER techs, phlebotomists, CNA's, LVN's, Medical Assistants, monitor techs, OB techs, OR techs, ER techs, dental assistants, secretaries, and massage therapists.
  • The talents in this class was surprising. Eighteen students brought with them already completed degrees, either a Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts in the following majors: wildlife biology, gerontology, history, sociology, environmental science, anthropology, psychology, entomology, kinesiology, religion, and aeronautics.
  • The many certificates or AA degrees they held were 15, including translators, EMTs, paramedics, EKG monitors, addiction studies, LVNs, CNA's.
  • How many years did it take them to get into the nursing program? The average was 4.5 years.
  • The students mostly made their home in Humboldt County; however, Chico, Grants Pass, Brookings, and Shasta County were also represented.
  • To the question- "What was your most difficult class on rotation? “10 students voted for OB, 7 for psychiatric, 6 for pediatrics, 5 for pharmacology. Then there were the outliers: One found the entire first semester most challenging, and one found the whole second year the most challenging.
  • The student's favorite class on rotation was the emergency department, scoring 17 votes, then OR at 9, OB at 8, ICU at 5, and Med/Surg at 1.
  • Forty two of the 51 graduates said that they planned to stay local.

Organizational Reports

Academic Senate: Senate Co-President Sokolow thanks Peter Blakemore for his service as a Senate Co-President last year. He also thanked Mike Dennis for stepping into the Co-President role next year, Sean Thomas for his work on the Curriculum Committee, and Karen Reis for serving on the Senate's Academic Standards and Policy Committee.

CSEA: CSEA President Tami Engman noted that the Classified Employee Appreciation week was last month. She also thanked Jose Ramirez and Tom Cossey for their service on CSEA's negotiation team.

Management Council: President Ron Waters noted that Jordan Hamil was elected to serve as Vice President of the Management Council. He also mentioned that the Management Council is hosing a barbeque on the Eureka and Del Norte campuses to honor the work of our classified staff colleagues.

Student Trustee: Student Trustee Peters said that she's looking forward to working the Trustee Mathews as her mentor. She also noted that a new President and Vice President has been appointed from the CR Del Norte student body.

Administrative Reports

President/Superintendent's Report: My written report included the press release related to the sale of our Garberville site, recognition of Kintay Johnson for successfully defending his dissertation, and acknowledgement of Angelina Hill for her selection to serve as a member of an accreditation peer review team.

My verbal comments included the recognition of Molly Blakemore for being chosen to serve on Mayor Susan Seaman’s marketing committee for the city of Eureka. I also recognized two Ferndale children—Lincoln Totten and Everly Galt—for raising funds for our CR student homeless program during last week’s Lemonade Day event. Lincole and Everly will be publically recognized at our July 9 Board meeting.  Here’s a link to the Times Standard article if you had not seen it yet:

Vice President of Instruction Report: Angelina’s written report noted that our course and program information is being uploaded into eLumen's online curriculum management system. She wrote that two of our incarcerated students will be honored for earning an Associate of Arts, Liberal Arts: Behavioral & Social Sciences degree at the first Commencement Ceremony at Pelican Bay State Prison on June 20, 2019. Angelina also noted Justine Shaw was selected as the 2019 Portugal Award winner for her ongoing research "The Archeology of an Ancient Maya Household after the Maya Collapse."

Vice President of Administrative Services Report: Julia’s written comments included information relative to Governor Newsom’s recently released the May Revision budget proposal for the 2019-20 fiscal year.  Here are some highlights from the analysis that was jointly developed by the Association of California Community College Administrators (ACCCA), Association of Chief Business Officials (ACBO), California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office (Chancellor’s Office), and Community College League of California (CCLC).

  • The May Revision maintains the Governor’s commitment to reducing state debt, paying down liabilities, building reserves, and allocating spending to one-time initiatives. It deposits an additional $1.2 billion into the Rainy Day Fund, bringing the reserve to $16.5 billion in 2019-20.
  • Proposition 98 estimates include higher General Fund amounts to offset lower property taxes for 2018-19 and 2019-20.
  • The estimated 2019-20 Cost of Living Adjustment is 3.26%.
  • The College Promise grant is expanded to include funding for a second year of fee waivers for all first-time, full-time students.
  • A total of $500 million is budgeted to pay down district's statutory employer contributions to CalSTRS in 2019-20.  This contribution is estimated to decrease the 2019-20 employer contribution rate from 18.13% to 16.7%, and from 19.1% to 18.1% in 2020-21

Vice President of Student Development Report: Joe’s written report included two important initiatives that I want to share in this article:

  • AB 302 Overnight Parking for Homeless Students.  AB 302 is a state bill that mandates every community college to provide “parking facilities on campus to grant overnight access … to any homeless student who is enrolled in coursework, has paid any enrollment fees, fees that have not been waived, and is in good standing with the community college, and for the purpose of sleeping in the student’s vehicle overnight.” 

The bill also requires that community colleges to monitor the overnight parking lot, provide overnight parking passes at no cost to the student, make accessible restroom facilities available, and provide information regarding available state, county, community college district, and community- based housing, food, and financial assistance resources. Students must self-identify as homeless, provide proof of enrollment, sign a liability waiver and acknowledge the overnight parking rules and regulations in order to receive an overnight pass.

AB 302 passed through the Assembly Committee on Higher Education on April 2 and through the Appropriations Committee on May 16. If the legislation passes during the current legislative session, it would go into effect on July 1, 2020.

The College is piloting an overnight parking program on the Eureka campus this summer anticipating passage of the bill. The purpose of the pilot during the summer term to make sure the College can operationalize the program on a larger scale during more populated fall and spring semesters.

It’s important that I mention that we are not going to exclude students whose fees have been waived from the program. In other words, any homeless CR student who is enrolled in coursework and is in good standing will be included in our program.

  • Meal Point Sharing. Every semester, some Residence Hall students have excess cafe meal points while others run out before the end of the semester. The College is going to roll out a plan this fall semester where students will be able to voluntarily give excess meal points to students in need.  Students donating meal points will have the option of giving points to a selected student(s) or to a bank where the points will be transferred to students requesting additional meal points.

Director of Human Resources Report: Wendy pointed out that we received $33,445 from the Chancellor's Office for professional development of our classified employee colleagues. 

Future Agenda Items, Reports, Requests for Information Report:

Approve a Trustee Request to Place an Item on a Future Agenda or Direct Staff to Give a Regular Report:

The Board asked that I provide an assessment of the AB 302 pilot program with corresponding policies and procedures at the end of the summer.

Closed Session

Draft President/Superintendent 2019-20 Goals and Objectives: I discussed my draft goals for next year. I expect to have the Board approve my final goals in open session at the July Board meeting.

Documents to download


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