Statewide Administration Assembly highlights

January 2021 SAA Meeting Highlights:

  1. Dennis McMillian, the consultant working on the proposed UA Foundation move to 501(c)3 was a guest speaker at the meeting. Mr. McMillian answered questions regarding the reason for the proposal, the steps he is taking in gathering data and information, and addressed staff concerns. This project is still in the initial phases, with the current priority being to address how the proposed shift in the Foundation will affect employee benefits, such as healthcare, retirement and pay. At this time, all steps are being taken to ensure that staff are not unduly impacted by this move. 
  2. Chief Human Resources Officer Steve Patin was also a guest at the meeting. CHRO Patin addressed concerns regarding HR support for the Foundation with the proposed shift to a 501(c)3, as well as addressed some projects that the HR Office has been working on. Racial justice and inclusion are two key areas of focus for HR, and initiatives will be forthcoming soon. CHRO Patin also addressed the post-COVID workplace and the need for flexibility in work location arrangements in the future. Remote work positions in the future, or hybrid remote/on-site work arrangements may be more commonplace in the future, however, there are certain concerns, such as ADA compliance, that will need to be addressed. 
  3. The dissolution of the System Governance Office was discussed. The current proposed process would have the Faculty Alliance and Coalition of Student  Leaders housed under the Vice President of Academics, Students and Research (new position as assistant to Vice President Layer), while the Staff Alliance and SAA would be handled by a new hired position executive assistant to the CHRO. 
  4. Staff Alliance has started drafting a resolution on Staff Burnout. This is in the initial planning phases, and more details should be available at the February meeting. SA is also putting together four subcommittees to review Morale, Compensation, Healthcare and an Ad Hoc committee on shared governance.
  5. A SW Administrator Position Review update was given. The committee met with David Bishko, a consultant conducting a review of the Statewide office, to discuss how the reviews overlap. He will be joining the committee when possible to facilitate the exchange of information. The committee is still in the early planning stages, and evaluation criteria and the review process are still being finalized. 
  6. Events - SAA began discussing the Spring 2021 food drive and the 2021 Recognition Event. With COVID, a standard food drive is a bit more of a challenge. SAA is looking into alternative methods for the food drive. The recognition event is in the beginning stages. Currently, we are unsure if we can have anything in person, or if this will be a digital presentation again. 
  7. General Updates - 
    1. Employees who lost annual leave in July by exceeding the 240 hour cap will have those hours added to their COVID emergency sick leave pool. 
    2. New student regent process is underway. 
    3. Chad Hutchison was brought on and is now the new State Relations Director. He is currently in Juneau for the legislative session. 
    4. COVID Vaccination - The cost of the vaccination is being covered by the government. UA’s health plan will pay for all copays and office visit fees for vaccination. 
    5. Anchorage Wolfcards - The Wolfcard system has been updated, and a new card will be required for Anchorage staff. 

SAA will meet again on Monday, February 8th from 10:00-12:00 p.m. via Zoom. All staff are encouraged and welcome to attend. 

Zoom Meeting Link