President/Superintendent's Blog

Summary of the April 7, 2020 College of the Redwoods Board of Trustees Meeting

Published on 4/7/2020.

Comments/Board Business

Member Comments: Trustee Biggin commented that she attended the CCCT board meeting virtually.

Vice President of the Board Kelley gave a "shot out" to the District for its response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

President Dr. Mullery mentioned that she and Vice President of the Board Kelley attended the Wiyot sign dedication on the Eureka Campus. She also commented on how well the District is coming together to address the myriad issues related to COVID-19.

Board Committee Reports: Trustee Mathews noted that the Board's Audit Committee met after the March Board meeting and will not meet again until June. She also reported that the President's Evaluation Committee has finalized the survey instrument. The survey will be sent to all of the Trustees and constituent group leadership.

President of the Board Dr. Mullery reported that the Board Self-Evaluation Ad Hoc Committee is close to finalizing the survey instrument.

Status of Board of Trustees Requests: Two requests are “in progress”—CR History and Board Policy (BP) 7330 Communicable Disease and Vaccinations.  The Trustees agreed to remove this item from future agendas to allow the administration to focus on more pressing issues.

Consent Calendar Action Items

Approve/Ratify Personnel Actions: The Board approved several personnel related items. Based on the Board’s action we welcome:

  • Two additional fulltime faculty to the college community for fall 2020. Leonard Bechler will serve as a new Assistant Professor (non-tenure track) in the Construction Technology program.  Amy Murphy will serve as an Assistant Professor (tenure track) in Computer Information Systems replacing soon to be retired Professor Dan Calderwood.
  • Two new associate faculty to our Del Norte campus community. Cynthia Scott as a LVN instructor and Mara Snider as a Counselor.
  • Two classified staff—Michelle Sandborn and Mark Drown—to the Eureka campus. Michelle will serve as a new Custodian and Mark Drown as the new Veterans Program Coordinator.

The Trustees ratified my decision to accept the resignation of Jonathan Masten, an Instructional Support Specialist I at our Klamath-Trinity Site, effective March 13, 2020. Also ratified was my acceptance of Professor Ken Letko’s (Del Norte) retirement effective May 15, 2021.

Bond Project Status: There was very little change in Measure Q expenditures over the last month. We spent $2,395 in Measure Q funds during the month ending February 29, 2020.  So far, Measure Q expenditures total $44,232,289.

Monthly Financial Status Report: We expected to receive a Total Computational Revenue (TCR) of $28,564,118 when we closed the books on the 2018-19 fiscal year.  However, the 2018-19 R1 Apportionment Report released last month from the Chancellor’s Office indicated that our 2018-19 TCR was $28,756,011. The additional $191,893 was included in this report’s Beginning Fund Balance.

Additionally, according to the Chancellor’s 2019-20 P1 Apportionment Report, our Student Centered Funding Formula (SCFF) Calculated Revenue is $29,416,015. While that is good news, the Chancellor's Office implemented a system-wide revenue deficit factor of 3.6897% in the revenue assumption. A deficit factor may need some explanation since it has been a while since we talked about it in relation to our revenue.

The Chancellor’s Office implements a system-wide deficit factor when the State assumes that it does not have enough money available to pay community colleges what they are due. Therefore, although we are owed a little over $29 million in revenue, the Chancellor’s Office is going to hold 3.6897% or $1,085,375 back because the State may not have the money to fully fund the SCFF.

As in the past, the deficit factor may decrease during the State’s budget negotiation process. However, I am going to continue to take a conservative approach to our future budgets since we do not know how the national and state economic downturn will affect our revenue. We are going to run a few budget forecasts scenarios assuming 1) a budget with a COLA scenario, 2) a flat budget with no COLA, and, 3) a budget that includes a deficit factor.

We are still planning to transfer $90,000 to the Child Development Center, $94,377 to the Shively Farm, and $520,000 to the OPEB fund from the General Fund. The total “Transfers Out” is $704,377.

Action/Discussion Items

Second Read of Board Policies and Administrative Procedures: The Trustees executed a second reading on several Board Policies (BP) and Administrative Procedures (AP) submitted by College Council and the Board’s ad hoc Group 1 committee. We will include the BPs and APs reviewed by Groups 2 and 3 in the May Board meeting.

Organizational Reports

CRFO: President Haggerty’s report mentioned that she and Vice President Kramer attended a FACCC Advocacy conference in Sacramento and met with faculty colleagues from several colleges to discuss the District’s plans for moving classes to remote instruction.

CSEA: President Engman reflected on the adjustments the classified staff made to help the District deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. She thanked our Network Administrators for their work to get laptops and VPN connections set-up for staff, faculty, and administrators. She also thanked the CSEA negotiation team for negotiating the COVID-19 Memorandum of Understanding.

Management Council: President Ron Waters commented on the remarkable way that CR is pulling together in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. He compared the way we are coalescing around the issues associated with the virus to the way the institution came together when we faced with “Show Cause” accreditation sanction several years ago.

Administrative Reports

President/Superintendent's Report:  My written report noted that:

  • The Chancellor’s Office awarded us $500,000 annually over the next three years to continue the work of implementing a sustainable program to support our homeless and housing insecure students. We want to use the funds to provide critical “wrap around” support services that includes counseling support, motel/hotel vouchers, student travel/bus passes, and help with costs related to apartment rentals. This funding will go a long way to help us reach our goal, along with Humboldt State University, the Humboldt County Office of Education, and various community organizations, of reducing the number of Humboldt County students who experience housing and/or food insecurity by 50% by 2029.
  • Given the instances of community spread of COVID-19 that are appearing in California and elsewhere, we believe that it is our collective responsibility to take prudent steps to help to inhibit the spread of the virus. In order to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 after spring break, the College took several immediate actions: transitioned as many in-person classes as possible to remote teaching for the Spring semester; reduced the number of employees physically present on our campuses and sites effective March 17, 2020 to help mitigate the spread of the virus. Thank you for your cooperation and assistance in learning and working remotely; asked all department heads to identify mission-critical functions or services that require people to report to our campus or sites; suspended or postponed all position searches unless the searches can be completed remotely; directed employees to use phone calls or Zoom videoconferences in place of meetings or face-to-face contact; canceled the District's commencement ceremonies at all locations; directed staff to keep the residence halls and dining services operational.
  • I mentioned a few examples of how CR is supporting first responders and healthcare facilities in these challenging times. In an effort to ease the burden on the local health care community, Manufacturing Technology professor Mike Peterson started producing plastic visors for face shields on the college’s Stratasys 3D Printer. In addition to the four per day created in the manufacturing lab, the college donated seven suitable shields from the woodshop and the welding lab to Mad River Hospital.

In response to a request from St. Joseph’s Hospital the Dental Assisting Program donated personal protective equipment and supplies to the hospital, in an effort to help ensure that medical personnel on the front lines combating Coronavirus in the local community have the supplies necessary to keep them safe.

Our current assumption is that the COVID-19 health emergency will continue through May and June. According to the Chancellor’s Office public, health officials expect that COVID-19 will peak for a second time in August/September. It is likely that the impacts of this health crisis will extend through the spring of 2021 with some permanent changes to the District's business practices.

The Chancellor has asked community college districts to consider moving all courses in the College’s course schedule to Canvas by Fall 2020, preparing for disruptions to the 2020-21 Academic Calendar, and prepare for the possibility of an economic slowdown.

We know that this pandemic will worsen before it improves. However, I believe that this crisis will bring the CR community together for the benefit of students and larger world. The work that our faculty, staff, and management have accomplished fosters hope and confidence that CR will continue to use its collective energy and unique strengths for the greater good as we all weather this crisis.

  • The Facilities Planning Committee (FPC) used the findings generated from the Greenway Partners, Inc. report and the outcomes from a district wide survey to create a list of 17 potential land use projects for consideration. The Executive Cabinet, Instructional Council, and Expanded Cabinet were given an opportunity to provide feedback on the list of potential projects identified by the FPC. A message was sent to the District on February 11, 2020 outlining the following list of projects selected for implementation and inclusion in the District's revised Facilities Master Plan (FMP). Below is a draft timetable for development of the projects.

 Potential Action


Develop alternative energy system: solar and/or wind micro grid system

Fall 2023

Develop a vegetable stand

Fall 2020

Develop a composting area

Spring 2020

Expand the partnership with the Botanical Gardens

Fall 2021

Develop an interpretative trail system/art walk in collaboration with the Wiyot Tribe

Fall 2021

Develop a cooperative food forest in collaboration with the Wiyot Tribe

Spring 2021

Develop a teaching greenhouse

Fall 2021

Create general open space

On going

Create a cross county course

Fall 2023

  • College of the Redwoods student/athlete Mitchell Hopkins has been named to the California Academic All-State Football Team. Mitchell was a two-year starter at the wide receiver/tight end position and was one of only 41 community college football student-athletes in the state to make the team. This is great recognition for Mitchell, CR's Cap and Gown program, coaching staff, and CR community.

 Vice President of Instruction Report: Angelina’s written report included the following:

  • Faculty spent March 23 - 27 re-designing classes so that students can continue instruction in the face of the COVID-19 emergency. Faculty and staff also worked diligently over the spring break in preparation. Division meetings were held using Zoom, and staff, faculty, and administrators worked together so that students can successfully complete the semester. The Distance Education Team developed an impressive CR Keep Teaching site to support faculty.  Angelina recognized the following individuals who provided extraordinary work to support the college’s transition from face-to-face to remote instruction: Reno Giovannetti, Wendy Riggs, Mark Winter, Lisa Sayles, Peter Blakemore, Ruth Rhodes, Roberta Farrar, Dave Bazard, Kerry Mayer, George Potaminanos, Ron Waters, Rianne Connor, Tiffany Schmitcke, and Heidi Bareilles.
  • A webpage was developed to notify students of how to access all remote student services, updates from the college, and a variety of other resources:  Two new help lines are available to students for general questions and assistance with technology questions and concerns. The date for students to withdraw has been extended to April 17. A plan is in place to support students so that their academic records and financial aid are not negatively impacted by the emergency. The course census date has passed meaning the college will still receive apportionment for any students requiring an excused withdraw because of the emergency.

Vice President of Administrative Services Report: Julia’s report noted that the Business Office will be operating at a limited capacity during the state of emergency. She also mentioned that a notice was given to contractors doing work for the District during the COVID-19 situation. I attached the notice to this summary.

Executive Director of Foundation Report: Marty’s report noted that:

  • He spoke at Indivisible Ferndale's fundraising event for CR's Redwoods Room and Board Scholarship. The Foundation received $7,244 in donations from this event.
  • The Redwoods Disaster Summit has been postponed until October 2020.
  • He, Board President Dr. Mullery, Board Vice President Kelley, and I attended the Wiyot partnership/sign dedication event.  Tribal members and the audience were very impressed with the signs CR had designed and installed.  
  • The Foundation made a donation to the Boys & Girls Club of the Redwoods.
  • He is working on a model to pilot for the President's Innovation Initiative and is speaking to various organizations to build a team of partners for the project.  So far, he’s spoken with Alanna Powell, Executive Director of Humboldt Made; Meredith Maier, co-owner of Six Rivers Brewery and Humboldt Made Board President; Scott Adair, Director of Humboldt County Office of Economic Development; David Cobb, Cooperation Humboldt; Susan Seaman, Eureka City Mayor; Cyril Oberlander, Dean of the HSU Library; and Kerry Mayer and Chris Gaines.

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