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SFBC Minutes - July 9, 2009

Members Present: Gary D'Agostino, Sonja Aikens, Jason Arp, Jeff Donahue, Jennifer McNeil and David Sprunger

Members Absent:  Ginni Delavan and Marilyn Ponti

Invited Guest: Cindy Matern, Ad-Hoc Member


The meeting was called to order at 1:20 p.m. in the Physical Plant Conference Room. 

Prior to reviewing old business, the Chairperson reviewed the accomplishments of the committee during his tenure as chairperson and also the need to complete certain tasks that have been left outstanding.  Meeting minutes, communication with constituents and reinforcement of a pro-active committee culture were the main points.

Old business centered on completed agenda items prior to the selection of a new chairperson.  Dag re-introduced the concept of having committee members attending the President's Council (P.C.).  Cindy Matern noted that the topics discussed in P.C. generally have no connection with benefits and that a delegate can bring an issue to the P.C. by simply requesting time on the agenda.  After a short general discussion, the idea was voted down.

Inclusion of the committee's charter into the College's Constitution was discussed.  Dag noted that it was originally the Presidents desire to do this when the committee was formed.  He also stated that the treasurer, acting as the original adviser of the committee, has noted that since the committee existed and was supported by the administration there was no need for inclusion.  Jeff Donahue stated that this exposed the status of the committee to the whims of any new administration.  Jason Arp voiced his doubt that this would occur and suggested the subject be further investigated.  A vote to charge the new chairperson with this task passed.

A group picture for the website was approved for September's meeting.

Dag expressed his thanks to Jennifer for getting the website updated.  Jeff asked if it was possible to create a link that will take viewers back to the staff home page and not the Whitman home page.  Jennifer stated yes that link can be added and she will take care of it.

A new survey was proposed and approved with a theme based on what the staff would like the committee to accomplish.  This survey will have an emphasis on positive, pro-active involvement and not seek complaints.  It was noted that with the website current and viable, the committee has the tools in place to accomplish this.  Cindy mentioned that the Committee can use Survey Monkey for this task.  Further, a proposal was passed to use the Fountain to distribute this type of information on a regular, probably monthly basis.  Sonja Aikens will continue as Fountain liaison.

Cindy Matern stated that the health insurance renewal issue is in stasis. The Colleges broker has all pertinent data through June and the process will go forward as soon as proposals are finalized by Cigna/Great West and Premera/Blue Cross. Cindy also noted that the pharmacy program is going to have a new administrator but she did not have an exact implementation date as of yet.  Once she does, a notice will go out to all employees regarding the change. 

New business began with the election of a new chairperson.  There were no volunteers, so Dag asked the committed for nominations.  Jennifer nominated Jeff, he accepted and the committee approved unanimously.  His term will begin on July 10 with the previous Chair providing all necessary assistance with the transition.

The resignation of Ginni Delavan was noted.  The Committee will contact her budget officer to request a replacement representative as soon as is practicable.

A proposal was adopted to continue meeting the first Thursday of each month but with the location of the meetings to rotate through campus with members providing rooms within their area of representation.

The concept of "lunch bag days" was discussed and adopted as a means to promote information to staff via presentations about benefits, i.e. AFLAC, SECU, Flex Spending, etc.  This initiative could begin as soon as October, with the SECU representative making a few presentations over two days.  Dag will give a report on this program during the August meeting.  It was agreed by the committee that workshops such as these will be able to cover a broad range of benefit issues that are available to the staff but are not always well understood.

The meeting was adjourned at 2:.30 p.m.


Next SFBC meeting: Thursday, August 6, 2009 at 1:15 p.m. in the Physical Plant Conference room.

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