Resolution from the Faculty Council Executive Committee Regarding the Creation of College Tuition and Budget Advisory Committees (D 8400).
Professor Janet Staiger (past chair, radio-television-film) reminded Council members about the discussions last year with administrators regarding the emphasis on decision-making occurring at the college and school levels as opposed to being determined at the top administrative level. During the summer, she said discussions were held with student leaders to determine what changes might be needed given decision-making restructuring. From those meetings, the need for resolutions for college tuition and budget committees was identified, with the committees referred to as College Tuition Budget Advisory Committees (TBACS).
Professor Staiger said Council members might have noticed in The Daily Texan last week that the Graduate Student Assembly passed a resolution calling for TBACs to be established. In addition, she said the Senate of College Councils passed a resolution last week calling for committee involvement in tuition setting as well as the contextual budgetary information needed to determine tuition needs. She explained that the resolution being presented to the Council was similar to those proposed by the other groups in that it called for college advisory committees comprised of students and faculty to work with college administrators to learn about college/school priorities, budget allocations and cuts, and tuition setting. She emphasized that the goal of the TBACs would be for faculty and students to gain information about what is going on in the college/school and its departments and to provide advice to the administrators on major decisions. The importance of the students and faculty working together and being united about the needs of UT, particularly during this time of budgetary constraints and the upcoming legislative session, was perceived by all groups as being critical.
Professor Staiger explained that this was a resolution, rather than legislation, so the wording from the various groups did not have to be in precise agreement. She said this meant the resolution was a statement or “a general notion of what we ought to be doing.” Chair Neikirk explained that the resolution came from the FCEC and therefore did not need a second. He then invited discussion from the floor. Professor Eileen Fowler (nursing) said she supported the resolution, but she wondered where the written reports were all sent. Professor Staiger replied that the reports would go to the faculty, staff, and students of the college/school. She added that if this process gained traction, then the reports could be posted on the Faculty Council web site.