Minutes: March 30th, 2004

TUESDAY, March 30, 2004

2:00 - 4:00 p.m.

Senate Members Present:

Aaron, Eunice

Gemello, John

Nichols, Amy

Alvarez, Alvin

Gerson, Deborah

Noble, Nancy

Avila, Guadalupe

Gonzales, Dan

Palmer, Pete

Bartscher, Patricia

Gregory, Jan

Pong, Wenshen

Bernard-Powers, Jane

Guerrero, Jaimes

Rocchio, Jean

Bernstein, Marian

Heiman, Bruce

Shrivastava, Vinay

Boyle, Andrea

Houlberg, Rick

Smith, Brett

Carrington, Christopher

Irvine, Patricia

Smith, Miriam

Chelberg, Gene

Jerris, Scott

Steier, Saul

Chen, Yu Charn

Kassiola, Joel

Stowers, Genie

Cherny, Robert

Langbort, Carol

Suzuki, Dean

Colvin, Caran

Liou, Shy-Shenq

Ulasewicz, Connie

Daniels, Robert

Mak, Brenda

Van Dam, Mary Ann

Edwards, James

McKeon, Midori

Vaughn, Pamela

Fielden, Ned

Meredith, David

Williams, Robert

Garcia, Oswaldo

Morishita, Leroy

Yang, Nini


Batista, Natalie; Bohannon,

Tara (excused); Contreras, A. Reynaldo; Corrigan, Robert (excused); Fung,

Robert (excused); Hom, Marlon (excused); Klironomos, Martha (excused); Otero,

Aina J.; Scoble, Don (excused); Terrell, Dawn

Visitors:  Bebee,

James; Benton, Peggy; Bomar, Kit; Buttlaire, Dan; Collier,

James; Gangi, Ahmad; Garcia, Velia;

Giardina, Richard; Griffith, Ellen; Guerrero, A. J.; Hallum, Ann; Holden,

Michael; Krishnan, V. V.; Linder, Martin; McClear,

Sheila; Rood, Jonathan; Saffold, Penny; Shahnasser,

Hamid; Stec, Loretta; Veeder,

Jane; Whitaker, Gail

CALL TO ORDER: 2:10 p.m.


Chair Edwards

announced that the CSU Statewide Academic Senate would be meeting on campus

this Thursday and Friday, while the Campus Chairs would be meeting here on

Thursday only.



Chair Edwards briefly

commented on the March 10 summit at Long Beach regarding CSU budget issues.  Included at the meeting were the Chairs of the

campus senates, campus Presidents and Presidents of the campus’ Associated

Students.  He reported that some

interesting concepts were raised and that the prior Director of the Department

of Finance, Russell Gould, analyzed

current problems and compared our current budget situation to the budget crisis

of the early 1990s.  At that time there

were issues caused by the loss of jobs and tax revenues, a situation that

righted itself with an economic recovery and the return of revenue.  Presently, the job loss is only one third of

that in the past, and now is more directly related to the general fund, which

supports the infrastructure.  By 1999 the

general fund tax revenues were 25% of the fund, which by 2000 had and are now indefinitely


Chair Edwards invited

State Senator Cherny to supply more


Senator Cherny

noted that Russell Gould’s

presentation was as good as far as it went, and emphasized capital gains tax as

the main source of revenue.  He was

disappointed however, that Gould did

not go far enough with his analysis of the state’s budget history.


recession of the early 1990s was a regular cyclical occurrence but also

coincided with the end of the Cold War resulting in a drastic restructuring of

the California economy.  California received the lion’s share of military spending and of

federal funding in general; funding sources that have now largely

disappeared.  Since the early 1990s California has had a higher unemployment rate than the rest of

the country, and what Cherny

described as a “disappearing middle class” syndrome.  Early 1990s economic changes that did not go

way meant that the middle class has been shrinking - a phenomenon that is not

altogether understood.  A large reduction

of stable blue-collar jobs has occurred in California - the former good-paying union jobs have gone

elsewhere.  Job growth in 1990s was primarily

in the service and high tech sectors, with the former characterized as poor

paying and unstable employment.  Another

part of the middle class moved upward, but California has ended up with a very different tax

structure.  This has been artificially

buoyed by stock options and high tech growth, which raised expectations for

education funding.  Some of the money

went to long-term energy contracts.  So

the current conclusion is that these changes now mean a return of the situation

to a pre-dot com state, a return with no relief in sight. We have never really

recovered from earlier downturns.  Cuts

made now will not go away and this is has become our new reality.




Steier m/s/p


FOR March 9, 2004


Shrivastava m/s/p





Edwards introduced Provost Gemello and Vice President of Finance Morishita

asserting that they are striving to keep the budget process as transparent as

possible.  He encouraged senators to ask

questions, either from their own personal perspectives or those from those of

their constituents.

Morishita distributed a handout

explaining the campus budget and a three-page document from the University

Budget Committee that was shared with the Senate Executive Committee that

morning.  These may be revised by taking

into account any revenue changes.  The

figures have been based on the Governor’s budget with $8 million coming from

increased fees.  The Governor has

proposed one set of increases while the CSU has countered with a different

plan.  Reductions total $14 million this

year; this is a transitional budget.

The far right column addresses the 2003-04

reduction to the budget before the Governor’s budget.  It shows how we will address the shortfall.  There remains a $13.9 million problem for next

year.  This does not include the student

fee increase, endorsed by the students but still awaiting the Chancellor’s

signature, a situation that is hopeful but not yet definite.

Senator Houlberg noted the beginning of the

“bloodletting” and asked when the campus would know more.


Edwards suggested waiting until the end of the talk for discussion

questions, unless there were clarification issues.

Senator Steier asked what the acronym SEVIS

meant in the document.

Morishita was not sure but indicated

that it tracked the international students’ data. [Official title is Student & Exchange Visitor Information System -

recorder’s note.]

Morishita noted that the second sheet

of the Operating Budget hand out showed the campus response to permanent

reductions.  There was a CMS reduction, a

Master Card reduction, and a classroom improvement reduction. The third column

showed a savings of $11.8 million.  On

the Cabinet Area Reduction Summary the column in blue is based on the

Governor’s proposed budget.  SFSU has

taken $1 million out of deferred maintenance, which will need to be replaced,

but not immediately.  In executive areas,

there were cuts in student assistants, as well as the close of the Office of

Human Relations, which by consolidation has saved $400,000.  The work study match is reduced.  All these have reduced general fund, but there

is still more to do.

Gemello noted that Morishita

had pointed out ways that we have to reduce the $10 million shortfall.  He wanted to outline where we are for planning



planning processes exist: a long range plan, which will address what would be best for the university in terms of its

programs, and also a short range plan that would be similar to this year,

involving across the board cuts although of greater magnitude.  The university will possibly apply some

short-term reductions to get through the year and the long-range plan would be

for fall 2006.

Gemello thought the goal was to

have a plan by the end of April and wanted to know if senators found that

feasible and presented an outline of the plan.


university has identified $800,000 coming from units reporting directly to the

Provost. A second stage would be the phase-out of general fund remedial courses

by fall 2006.  We might offer classes through

continuing education or through the community colleges.  We will need to wait two years for this phase so there will be adequate

time for testing.


remainder of the reductions would come from programmatic reductions, and he

reminded senators of the broad vs. deep and narrow approaches, and the

administration’s preference for the latter. He pointed out that some units

could not handle the reductions. The campus administration has decided, with

input from a variety of campus bodies, how to continue with the reductions. He

has met with College Deans, the Senate Executive Committee, the Senate and

Department Chairs, as well as conducting Town Hall meetings each month, and

everywhere there has been some discussion.


current plan is for the Deans to meet during the following week and then

provide their proposals. The Deans would make their cases, and then he and the

President would make a plan to bring before the University Budget Committee.

No programs would be identified before then, but for

unusual reasons, two programs have been named already.


College of Business has some plans to move some degrees to a self-support

system. One reduction approach is to reduce the general fund, and another

approach is to keep programs but fund them differently and not from the general

fund.  He commented that the College of Business has a better chance to go

to self-support than any other unit and so had been given a larger than

proportionate reduction.  He mentioned a

$2.3 million target had been proposed to the Dean, who would discuss this with

the departments to see if and how that could happen.


noted that the other program made public was the proposed consideration for reduction

or discontinuance of three of the engineering degrees - civil, mechanical, and

electrical.  He asserted that there have

been no decisions about any programs for discontinuance at this time.

Engineering has not been on the table but will be considered.  Several factors led to this status. There were

four tenure-track searches in that department that needed offers, and he did

not want to make any offers until more sure of the future.  It did not make sense to continue.  The Dean then told faculty what was up. He

emphasized that he was not playing semantic games - and that contrary to rumor,

no decision had been made that Engineering was targeted or “on a list.”


Deans had come to meet with the President and himself, they proposed different

things to save money, but the results were not sufficient.  He thought that it was not possible to solve

the crisis by finding small programs to shed, when we need programs of

significant size, which was why making bold decisions was important.


expressed a desire to hear about the feelings of the group on this plan, when

it is formulated.  He thought it prudent

to provide a proposal, and have it work its way through senate, with the

understanding that any changes to it would need to be balanced.  Another alternative might be creating a

proposal that has more reductions than necessary and then alter it to fit



Houlberg indicated that Gemello had just answered his first

question but had a second question about the operating budget.  He noted that the retirement rate increase had

approached 250% and wondered why its increase was so dramatic.

Morishita responded this reflected

that the university was being charged more. Benefits now comprise $41 million

of our $225 million budget. Wages and benefits together comprise $176 million

of the budget.

Senator Houlberg thought that the golden

handshake might put some of the burden back on PERS.

Morishita indicated that the “golden

handshake” was on the Governor’s desk but that he has not signed it yet.


Daniels indicated that looking at the senate discontinuance policy there

were three decision variables: importance to the institution, quality of the

program and demand for the program.  He

asked if we have any data on program costs and whether it could be made public.

Gemello indicated that we do not

have it all yet, but it would be gathered.


Williams noted the $9.7 million deficit, and it sounded like there might

be another $5 to $7 million more a year from now.  He wanted confirmation of these numbers.  He also questioned whether we should be

providing a plan that can account for a $14 million deficit.  He encouraged senators to speak up.

Morishita indicated that while we do

not know the true extent of next year’s budget, it would be worse by a minimum

of $7 billion for the state next year.

Gemello commented on the possibility

of next year having more reductions, another reason for deep and narrow now.  The uncertainty of the future has driven the

university to consider deep and narrow cuts.


Stowers asked about the fiscal status of CEL, whether they are truly

contributing a $1 million to the university and if they continue to contribute

department and college shares to the university.

Gemello noted that Gail Whitaker

had worked hard to turn CEL around and is definitely moving towards

self-support activities and should be very valuable for the university in the



Stowers indicated that her college of BSS had made recommendations, and

that whatever administration decided, she noted that the BSS recommendations

were totally faculty developed, and hoped that they would be considered


Gemello expressed thanks to

departments and colleges for their input.


McKeon expressed some surprise to learn that the Provost would meet with

the Deans next week.  Her college council

meeting was occurring this Thursday, which would not give enough time for the

Department Chairs to consult with their faculty.  She asked if the Provost would consider

replacing the timeline so that faculty could collectively consider proposals.

Gemello hoped that the Dean had

picked a time that would work and take into account council meeting input.


Shrivastava thanked the Provost for multiple, informative presentations.

 He asked that, similar to budget

reduction plans, if there were parallel plans for raising more funding form

other sources.

Gemello responded that indirectly

the answer was yes.  The university was

limited in the ways it could round up additional revenue.  There are two main sources: Research and

Sponsored Programs has done good development and has generated external funding

through grants, and the advancement office has been productive.  The third potential source is self-support.


Shrivastava observed that there were several hiring processes in

progress and asked if these would be frozen.

Gemello responded in the negative,

indicating that the hiring pools were currently very strong.  The university was in a budget crisis now, but

it would remain a university for long time.  If it could hire outstanding new faculty now,

it should do that.  He had urged Deans

and Chairs to take excellent people, but not make marginal hires.  He estimated that probably only a third of

projected hires would be made offers.

Senator Shrivastava asked about the status of

administrative searches.

Gemello indicated that the searches

had pretty well run their course and there would be no real savings by halting



Ulasewicz posed two questions.  She

asked what would be cut, and if there was a reorganization plan, whether it was

being offered to people.

Gemello indicated that he and the

President had asked the last six Academic Senate Chairs for advice.  He felt that they had given some thought to

consolidating colleges and commented that any reorganization plan would have to

come to the senate.


Ulasewicz provided some feedback on the timing, expressing a preference

for knowing sooner rather than later and that if the university needed to make

a cut of “x”-million dollars, she would prefer a longer range option.


Pong asked about the criteria used to identify the Program of

Engineering, noting its great record of hiring minority students.  What were the criteria?  Would you reconsider the narrow and deep

approach as over 50 faculty members would be affected.

 He thought there would be great damage

from that action.

Gemello could not provide criteria

yet as it had not been developed, but he affirmed that Engineering had been

identified as a potential program.  He

noted that when programs were identified, the proposal would come to senate,

and would need to meet the established criteria.  He did not think that 50 tenure-track faculty

would be affected.


Krishnan asked about the nature of deep vs. across the board cuts. He

was unconvinced that all options had been taken.  Looking at deep cuts means talking about

programs, and that three numbers had been mentioned: student/faculty ratios,

faculty size, and student body size, where in fact it was important to go

beyond that. Questions such as “is the program good for the university?” and

“what affect does the program have on the university” need to be asked.  He related how the department faculty had come

to hear about the news, and that the Dean had “told them their rights” and that

it was a complete surprise, and hoped for more transparency in the future.

Gemello indicated that in a variety

of venues he had never really advocated for across the board cuts.  His major point was that across the board cuts

do not work in a sustainable fashion.  Is

this fair?  He indicated some of the

problems that come with across the board cuts.  He said that administration had made the

decision to go deep and narrow.  He was

unsure of whether to stick with figures when considering programs - the

criteria had not been developed yet.  As

to whether the department was good, he commented that every program on the list

was going to be a good program.  Thirdly

he indicated that one reason that the Engineering Department had gotten short

notice was that the Dean himself had received short notice.  This had been the administration’s idea, not

the Dean’s.  The Dean had not been told

that Engineering would be cut, only that that was a possibility.

Senator Daniels asked about the implications

of more immediate cuts on lecturer faculty in the short term.

Gemello responded that he was not

sure what each college would do, but that the university could expect

significant reductions in lecturer dollars.  This would be a college decision.


Chen commented that in the past, there had been talk about college and

department mergers.  It was a huge shock

to hear about the potential discontinuance of Engineering.  He urged considering proportional cuts as an


Gemello responded that to him

“proportional” meant across the board.  He indicated that the term “program”

was meant the same way it was used in senate policy - it could be a department,

an undergraduate or graduate degree or a concentration.


Alvarez observed that programmatic cuts seemed inevitable, but were not

defined yet.  What would happen to

faculty?  He asked what would faculty

options be within those programs - reassignment, elimination, etc. and what

were the criteria about the status of faculty affected.

Gemello responded that for faculty

in individual programs, it would depend.  Lecturers would probably not be rehired.  Tenure-track faculty had guidelines in the

collective bargaining agreement that covered this situation. Layoffs would mean

mitigations - the university would talk to other campuses with other programs.  Possibly faculty skills might transfer to

other departments, and the university would work with faculty.


Gregory observed that the senate body was distressed and that it could

become itself a source of rumors. She urged senators to think before speaking

and of the need to make sure of the veracity of “facts” disseminated. She noted

that the university is not in layoff mode yet.  She noted that the Faculty Rights panel would

field any questions about potential employment issues.





Rood, Associate Vice President for Information Technology, began by

observing that everyone on campus at this point was aware of the problems with

spam.  He noted that 50% of 200,000 the

incoming emails per day to campus is now spam.  The real solution is legislation, and California has a good anti-spam plan

in place, although the federal legislation, effective January 1, was a

watered-down solution. Laws will help but we still need more and better ones.  Spoofing, the deceptive practice of stealing

email addresses and attaching them to email, is a real problem.  It serves no purpose, and the university

sought to identify and block spam before it hit campus inboxes.  Until now spam blocking has been user

controlled.  Many people however, still

complain and want more.  We want to talk

about a path to remove the most aggressive spam before it hits our door.


Gregory attempted publicly to share

responsibility for the resolution with Senators Fielden and Cherny,

as well as Vice President Rood.



item - 1st & 2nd readings


Edwards noted he had asked for humor

in preparation of this from Senator Gregory.


Jerris m/s/p

Senator Jerris read the resolution.

Senator Steier ruefully but indignantly noted that if spam were restricted,

his ability to redress certain personal anatomical deficiencies would be


Senator Carrington

asked about the nature of the criteria used for identifying spam.  Some of these methods use the same mechanisms

employed to protect children from the Internet.  He wanted to know how our system will operate

and did not want us to move too far in the wrong direction.


indicated that the criteria would be no different from current criteria, only

changing whether the user would receive the mail or not.  The spam “rule set” is generated by words,

with different triggers.  He mentioned

“spam assassin” as the university’s open source solution.  If a rule set is blocking material

inappropriately, there were ways to modify and fine-tune the software.

Senator Carrington still expressed concern

about the effect this might have on academic study.

Rood suggested multiple solutions and expressed willingness from his office

to work with faculty.

Senator Cherny indicated that he had a similar question, now answered.

Senator Williams

asked whether there might be some technical language that could be put into

resolution to give it more meaning.

Rood noted

the constantly changing world of spam and how rules would change, then the

spammers would change, and that it was difficult to pin down terminology.


seconded the notion of the threshold’s capacity for modification.  It was possible to make arrangements to allow

certain addresses through.

Senator Houlberg

wanted to know what the meaning of sending the resolution to “the local media

outlets” was in the last resolved clause.

Senator Gregory responded that this is a

traditional response to items of public interest.

Senator Houlberg was unconvinced that it was a good idea to broadcast

this apparently frivolous resolution to the media.

AGENDA ITEM #10—Adjournment— 4:00 p.m.

Meeting Date (Archive)