President/Superintendent's Blog


Summary of the College of the Redwoods August 6, 2019 Board Meeting


Comments/Board Business

Member Comments: Trustee Mathews stated that she visited the CR booth at the Del Norte County Fair recently.

Board Committee Reports: Trustee Dr. Deister mentioned that the Board Evaluation Committee met prior to the regular meeting. Trustee Dr. Mullery reported that the Ad Hoc Committee looking at the President's compensation has been meeting.

Status on Board of Trustees Requests: I provided an update on the current status of the Trustees’ informational requests. Two requests have not yet been completed: CR History and an update on communicable disease and vaccinations (BP 7330). I anticipate closing these two requests this academic year.

Consent Calendar Action Items

Approve/Ratify Personnel Actions: By Board action, we welcome five new classified colleagues to our college community. Emily Chang will begin service as the Instructional Support Specialist III (Math Lab) in Eureka on effective August 15, 2019. Effective August 19, 2019 Schuyler Kirsch and Linda Phelps will start as Instructional Support Specialist IIs in the Eureka Light Center.  Joining Emily, Schuyler, and Linda in Eureka will be Jordan Ghisetti as an Account Clerk III (effective August 5, 2019) and Robert Peterson as a Custodian I – Evenings (effective July 22, 2019).

We also welcome several new associate faculty members: Susan Blackburn (Nursing), Cat Boers (English – Eureka), Christopher Brant (Agriculture – Eureka), Rachel Bruhnke (Agriculture – Eureka), Candy Bryant (DSPS Counselor – Eureka), Jessica Caple (TRIO Counselor – Eureka), Joan Carpenter (Drafting Technology – Eureka), Alexandra Clifton (Kinesiology – Eureka), April Hoffman (History – Eureka), Lindsay Kessner (Art – Klamath-Trinity), Brian Kyte (Chemistry – Eureka), Jennifer Miles (Sociology – Klamath-Trinity), Bethany Rapp (Coach – Eureka), Michelle Somers (TRIO Counselor – Eureka), and Kyle Zeck (Business – Eureka).

Approve Bond Project Status Report: This month’s Bond Status Report showed that we are rebalancing the budget to cover the final stadium hazard removal, PE lab upgrades expenditures, and provide funding for the demolition of the Old Library. Here’s a snapshot of the changes:

  • $305 total moved from Physical & Life Sciences Repurpose or Demo
  • $6,034 total moved from Address SWACC Inspection Report Deficiencies
  • $4,679 total moved from Transfer Center Upgrades
  • $30,000 total moved from Student Union Upgrade
  • $45,000 total moved from Mandated improvements to wastewater plant
  • $19,961 total moved from Technology Infrastructure Upgrades
  • $6,263 total moved from Document Imaging and Secure Storage
  • $19,428 total moved from Project Management
  • $1,645 total moved from Completed Q Project balance

Action/Discussion Items

Monthly Financial Status Report:  This report covered 100.00% of the fiscal year and included adjustments to student-centered funding formula revenue as a result of the District’s P2 State Apportionment Report (P2).  According to the P2, the District’s Total Computational Revenue (TCR) with the Student Centered Funding Formula (SCFF) is $28,668,254.

Julia and I have signaled that the State may not have enough money to fully fund the SCFF.  We’ve been told that the State only has enough revenue available to fund $28,539,649—which is $128,605 below.  The Chancellor’s Office has stated that as long as FTES counts don’t increase significantly with the Recalc numbers, the State should have enough revenue to fund constrained TCR for all districts.

We are projecting a 2018-19 ending fund balance of 7.3%.  However, please keep in mind that the final ending fund balance won't be determined until late September.

Approve Demolition of the Life Science and Physical Science Buildings: I recommended that the Board approve the demolition of the Life Science and Physical Science buildings, the land restored, and the site sanitized in terms of utilities.

As background, in fall 2018, I brought key community members together to collect some repurposing ideas for the vacant Life Science (LS) and Physical Science (PS) buildings. I subsequently engaged Greenway Partners, Inc. to identify potential land and building re-purposing use ideas, assess the potential costs, research technical and jurisdictional hurdles, and core development needs underlying each re-purposing idea, and provide a decision-making tree for moving forward.

Greenway Partners' Jim Penny, Project Manager, and Aristea Saulsbury, Associate Project Manager, presented Greenway's findings at the July Board meeting and provided the Trustees with information needed to make a decision about the buildings and land to best serve our Mission.  Greenway offered two options to the Board of Trustees.

  1. Demolish the buildings and either let the land stand vacant or use the land to support our curriculum programming.
  2. Renovate the buildings to Code for a cost in excess of $5.5 million dollars continue trying to entice an outside party to come in and invest in the buildings.

I asked Fred Sturner and Steven Roper to discuss some pertinent information relative to the recommendation to demolish the buildings. Here’s a summary of what they shared with the Board:

  • As a part of the UIR project, the Main Point of Entry (MPOE) for the electrical 12KV service for the entire Eureka Campus is relocated to a new building and new technology.
  • The UIR project calls for the demolition of the current electrical MPOE located in the Physical Sciences building. We did not originally realize that this demolition effort will compromise the structural integrity of the North-West end of the building.
  • We cannot leave the building in an unsafe situation. As a result, we will have to take down the Physical Science Building under the UIR project.
  • There are four addtional complications:
  1. The Physical Science and Life Science buildings share several services. They also share a single roof support system. This shared roof support system would require us to pay for an Architect and Structural Engineer to develop a new support system for the Life Sciences Building. This is not a good use of resources.
  2. These buildings also share a single transformer. When the Physical Science building is demolished, there will be no perimeter lighting or any other lighting available in the Life Science building.
  3. The old “acid pit”, or lab neutralization system is also shared infrastructure between these buildings.
  4. All of the sinks in both buildings flow to this shared resource. This is used to stabilize the PH of the water before it enters the sanitary sewer system. If we do not bring down the Life Sciences building at the same time as Physical Sciences, we will have to cap parts of this system instead of correctly removing all parts of it.
  • Currently, due to serious mold contamination, we are unable to enter the Life sciences Building. As a result, the pea-traps, floor drains, sink drains and other bathroom fixtures, are drying out.
  • This allows sewer gasses to enter the building, further creating health and safety problems.

The Board voted unanimously to demolish the LS and PS buildings. The timing of the demolition will be dependent on the completion of the UIR project’s electrical infrastructure work. In the meantime, I am going to capitalize on the momentum generated by Greenway's work and ask the Facilities Planning Committee to lead a broad College community discussion relative to how the land can be used to advance the College's Mission, enhance the academic enterprise, and support student success. The discussions will be begin the fall semester.

Informational Reports

Program Review Committee Executive Summary 2018-2019: The annual Program Review Committee Executive Summary was presented to the Board as information at this meeting.

Organizational Reports

Student Trustee: Student Trustee Peters noted that the students are working on securing a food truck for the Del Norte Campus, expanding bus passes, and looking at the District's policy relative to dual enrollment (college to college).

Administrative Reports

President/Superintendent's Report: My written report noted that our initial search for the Police Chief failed to result in suitable candidates for the position. I hope to make an announcement shortly on how I will temporarily fill this important position while a national search resumes in the fall semester.

I informed the Board that I released a draft Vision Statement and Strategic Directions for initial college constituent feedback in April 2019 and that I asked Paul Chown to organize multiple feedback mechanisms for the college community to provide in the Fall semester. The draft Vision Statement and Strategic Directions document is attached to this article. 

Vice President of Instruction Report: Angelina’s report noted that in 2018-2019, 176 students enrolled in the Cooperative Work Experience Education (CWEE) program. The students enrolled in a variety of work experience opportunities including paid internships with the Humboldt Film Commission, KEET/PBS North Coast, Redwoods National Park, and the Humboldt County Office of Economic Development. Students also worked in the Health-Careers Education Summer Institute in partnership with the Humboldt County Office of Education. 

She also informed the Trustees that several faculty from multiple disciplines came together this year to author a new class in General Studies: GS-7 My Future, My Plan. This 3 unit course will provide a dual enrollment opportunity for high school students by supporting the guided pathways pillars of clarifying and entering the path to college. We intend to offer this dual enrolled course next year in six high school districts. Over a dozen sections of the course will be offered to an estimated 260 high school students.

Vice President of Administrative Services Report: Julia updated the Board on the topics covered at the 2019-20 IEPI Budget Workshop that was held July 22, 2019. Here are few key points she noted:

  • The multiyear outlook prepared by the Legislative Analysts Office (LAO) estimates that the growth in the Minimum Guarantee will be less than the statutory K-14 COLA in 2022-2023, which means that the COLA will be decreased to what can be funded.
  • For 2018-19, it was stated that the amount of revenue currently available is nearly adequate to fully fund districts’ constrained Total Computational Revenue (TCR), as long as the number of FTES reported with the recalc doesn’t increase significantly.  For Redwoods, the P2 constrained TCR was $28.668 million.  This is $1.041 million more than Hold Harmless revenue.
  • The 2019-20 Advance Apportionment figures were presented.  The Advance amounts reflect the greater of “Minimum Revenue” which is 2017-18 TCR plus 2018-19 and 2019-20 COLA (2.71% and 3.26% compounded) or Constrained 2018-19 TCR.  For Redwoods, the Advance figure is $28.668 million.  This is $141 thousand more than the Hold Harmless figure used in the 2019-20 Tentative Budget.
  • Some new information was shared by the Chancellor's Office (CO) regarding base revenue amounts.  The Chancellor's Office stated that if there is a deficit in any budget year and a district’s revenue is constrained, that reduced amount will be the base revenue moving forward.  This is different from what has been communicated previously.
  • The CO is proposing some clean-up legislation to the SCFF. It has been recommended that Supplemental and Student Success allocation counts only if the student is classified as a resident student. Nonresident, incarcerated, and special admit students would be excluded (where applicable). The intent is that these changes will be made in 2019-20.

Julia’s report also noted that our new auditor performed their interim fieldwork and found that that due to the timeliness of the District in supplying the information that had been requested, as well as the availability of staff during their visit, the audit is ahead of schedule.  The auditor also, shared that the team found no compliance issues that would rise to the level of a finding, at least at this point in the audit.  Congratulations to Julia, the fabulous staff in the Business Office, Admissions, Financial Aid, DSPS and Maintenance/Facilities for providing information to the auditors.  

Vice President of Student Development Report: Joe informed the Board that the annual Eureka Campus Welcome Back Party is scheduled for Wednesday, August 28 from 11:30am to 1:30pm and students, staff and faculty will enjoy a free lunch on the Del Norte Campus on Thursday of the first week of the semester. 

Joe also provided an assessment of the AB 302 Pilot Program. If you remember, in anticipation of the possible passing of AB 302, we implemented a pilot program this summer to ensure that the District will be ready for full implementation of AB 302. Here’s a summary of the assessment:

  • The Administrative Procedure for parking was rewritten to allow students to park overnight in the main parking lot. Interim AP 6750 ‘Parking Regulations’ was put in place prior to the implementation of the pilot program. (attached)
  • A definition of homeless student was developed for the pilot program: “Any current College of the Redwoods student who self-identifies as homeless or housing insecure will be eligible”. This is a broader definition than McKinney-Vento definition. (attached)
  • The main lot was identified as the location with certain rows assigned for overnight parking.  The main lot is located in proximity to the Fieldhouse for restroom and shower access as required.
  • The Waiver and Release of Liability and Terms and Conditions forms were developed and implemented. (attached)
  • The overnight parking permits were made available to students at no cost.
  • The hours of operation were developed as 5:00pm to 7:00am nightly whenever classes are in session including holidays, not to include spring break, winter break and before and after summer session.
  • Information has been made available to overnight parking students regarding available state, county, District and community based housing, food and financial assistance resources.
  • Several video surveillance cameras have been ordered to cover the Fieldhouse walkway, entrance and restrooms and improve video surveillance in the main parking lot.
  • As of July 31, 2019 there has been only one overnight parking pass issued for the summer. This may be an indication of a lack of demand due to the Eureka Campus isolated location or it could also be a product of the summer class offerings being mainly online with few face to face sections. Regardless, the District is prepared for a full implementation of AB 302 in the event it passes.

Director of Human Resources Report: Wendy noted that CR will receive $45,000 from the Chancellor’s Office to support our EEO work. She also noted that on July 1, 2019, Joselle Wagner, transferred to the Assistant Director of EOPS position. Subsequent to Joselle’s transfer, we reorganized HR by eliminating the Human Resources Recruiting Coordinator position and changing the Human Resources Specialist and Human Resources Development Analyst positions to Human Resource Analysts. The reorganization will reduce personnel expenditures and allow the department to be more efficient while maintaining services.

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 requested information relative to property taxes.

Documents to download

Print