The UA Foundation's Estate Planning workshop drew a record crowd. Photo by Monique Musick

Seminar Focused on the "Tips and Traps" of Estate Planning

More than 100 Fairbanksans filled the Butrovich Board of Regents conference room on Thursday, May 15 to participate in an Estate Planning Seminar sponsored by the University of Alaska Foundation. 

Presented by local attorney Rich Hompesch of Hompesch & Evans and Fairbanks CPA Kevin Walsh of Walsh, Kelliher & Sharp, the two-hour seminar focused on the "Tips and Traps" of estate planning. 

The seminars are held annually in Alaska's major cities and provide valuable information to community and campus members about planning their estates and making gifts to support the university. For more information, contact Scott Taylor, Foundation Planned Giving Manager, at 450-8032  or scott.taylor@alaska.edu.

Regent's will meet in Anchorage June 5-6, 2014

The University of Alaska Board of Regents will gather on the UAA campus June 5-6, 2014, for an action packed agenda that includes distribution of the FY15 operating and capital funds, the annual Staff Make Students Count awards, and a presentation by the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education on how Alaska stacks up against other states in public education.

The agenda also includes discussion about a potential UA-wide maintenance fee, a renewal of the president's contract, action items for Shaping Alaska's Future and proposed policy changes. The agenda is available on the Board of Regents site: http://www.alaska.edu/bor/agendas/2014/jun-5-6/

Public testimony will be accepted at approximately 9 a.m. both Thursday and Friday. The meeting will be live webstreamed at www.alaska.edu/oit/services/video-conferencing/streaming-conferences/. Video streaming will be unavailable during executive session.

The UA College Savings Plan and Easy, Peasy Payroll Deduction

By Kate Ripley

There are three reasons why I participate in the UA College Savings Plan through employee payroll deduction: Rory, Robin and Rachel.

Our 18, 16 and 10 year old, respectively, were just babies when we first signed up for the UA College Savings Plan. My husband, UAF Journalism Professor Brian O’Donoghue, started working for the university when Rory and Robin were toddlers. I joined UA Statewide a number of years later, when Rachel was only three months old. A friend (Dermot Cole, as a matter of fact) told us a long time ago that the UA College Savings Plan was one of the highest rated in the country, in terms of quality service and low fees. We started saving for Rory, then Robin and ultimately Rachel, as soon as we could.  MORE...

The Wellness Plan—Looking Ahead

Building a Culture of Wellness

With a little more than a month to go before the June 30 deadline to earn a $600 discount on UA Choice health plans—up to $1,200 if your spouse or financially interdependent partner (FIP) also participates— more than 1,600 plan members have completed their Personal Health Assessment at Healthyroads.com and more than 800 have submitted biometric readings through a health care provider form or Quest Diagnostic services to qualify for the rebate. (Due to a lag of up to three weeks for processing not all biometric data has been officially received by Healthyroads even though it was submitted.)

It was estimated that 70 percent of employees and 50 percent of spouses or FIPs on the plan will take the steps to qualify for the rebate this year. By that estimation an additional 2,100 members will fulfill these requirements in the remaining time.

But what about next year?

This year is only the first step in phasing in a comprehensive outcomes-based wellness program. Beginning in 2015, additional actions will be added and participants will need to accumulate points that will determine their eligibility for the discount. More...

After that it's real numbers.

Statewide Finance Adapts to New Regulations and Processes

Statewide Finance is gearing up to address two vital and comprehensive changes that impact the University.

1) As a result of President Obama’s Executive Order and two years of review, the federal Office of Management and Budget (OMB) overhauled eight circulars and combined them into one, making numerous changes in the process. The University of Alaska will have to implement these changes. The reform of OMB guidance is intended to reduce administrative burden for non-Federal entities receiving federal awards while reducing the risk of waste, fraud and abuse. 

The changes primarily impact grants management in the areas of procurement, fixed assets, internal controls, proposals, cost sharing, direct/indirect costs, allowable costs, sub-awards and disclosure statements, to name a few. In addition, there are new, modified and deleted provisions as it concerns the Facilities and Administrative (F&A) rate and the Single Audit.

Controller Myron Dosch is forming a university-wide work group that will review the changes and make recommendations for action. We expect that there will be numerous changes/updates to procedures, processes and systems throughout the University. Note that per federal guidance, implementation must be complete by December 26, 2014, and Single Audit provisions implemented for Fiscal Year 2016.

2) Campuses and departments that accept credit/debit card payments must process such payments in compliance with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI-DSS). It is the responsibility of each campus to maintain compliance with the PCI-DSS.

New PCI Data Security Standard SAQ 3.0 was issued in November 2013. The new SAQ 3.0 requirements will become the official standard in January 2015. There are numerous additional steps to be addressed in transitioning to SAQ 3.0. The University of Alaska will have to implement/ comply these changes/steps.

Chief Records Officer Russell O’Hare is forming a university-wide work group and coordinate the compliance effort. As per the compliance guidelines, the effort is scheduled to begin transitioning from SAQ 2.0 to SAQ 3.0 by October 2014 and be ready for the official start of the compliance on January 1, 2015.

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