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Recreational Sports Committee

September 9, 2010 – Election of Vice Chair
Introductions were made and the election for vice chair took place. Margaret Syverson nominated David Birdsong, who was unanimously elected.

Committee Overview
Tom Dison, ex officio, provided an overview of Recreational Sports (RecSports) and the role of the RecSports Committee along with a sampling of divisional highlights from 2009-10. The committee watched a PowerPoint presentation, which provided a synopsis of the programs, services, and facilities that RecSports offers as well as a list of its divisional objectives for 2010-11. Packets of divisional publications and related materials were distributed, including a list of divisional highlights for 2009-10.

October 21, 2010 – Membership and Facility Usage Fees
The committee reviewed and supported the RecSports 2011-12 membership and facility usage fee schedules. RecSports did not request an increase in faculty/staff membership fees, but did recommend various ways to simplify the fee structure. A flat 1.67 percent increase in the facility usage fee was also proposed. The increase is intended to compensate for escalating maintenance and utility costs and is based on the average Consumer Price Index (CPI) over the past three years.

Update on Student Organization Bank Closure
The University’s Student Organization Bank closure will have an impact on RecSports operations. This bank monitored and processed all financial transactions for the University’s student organizations. RecSports sponsors forty-two student organizations on campus through its Sport Club program. After the bank closes, all transactions of sponsored groups will need to be handled, approved, and reconciled by the sponsoring department. As a result, this decision will have a financial impact on the division, requiring RecSports to absorb an additional workload to ensure that all Sport Club funds are deposited and spent according to University cash-handling rules.
November 18, 2010 – Recreational Sports 2011-12, 2012-13 Budget Review
The committee was given an overview of the concepts and philosophy upon which the Division of Recreational Sports approaches the use and expenditure of funds, along with an overview of how the budget process works relative to the Student Services Budget Committee (SSBC). In previous years, RecSports requested support for proposed growth items. Last year, RecSports participated in the University-wide reduction process and began a period of contraction with cuts totaling 6.8 percent of its fee-based operating budgets. This year, due to the poor economic climate and continuing state-mandated budget reductions, the SSBC again has no new funds to distribute to student services. In addition, RecSports is being asked to find a way to cut an additional 4.8 percent of its fee-based operating budgets for the 2011-12, 2012-13 biennium. The committee discussed the information provided, including RecSports’ specific recommendations on how to reduce expenditures and generate additional revenue to meet these obligations for 2011-12, 2012-13 and voted unanimously in support of the division’s approach.

February 15, 2011 – Budget Updates
The Division of Recreational Sports’ 2011-12 and 2012-13 budget reduction proposals, which the committee reviewed and unanimously supported at the November 2010 meeting, were forwarded to the vice president for student affairs in December. Soon after the proposal was submitted, a new set of instructions was delivered by the administration.

The new budget reduction instructions asked each unit to develop a five-year plan, spanning the fiscal years 2010-11 through 2014-15. This new approach aligned the administrative units with the academic departments and was to include an amount equal to two percent of salaries for each of these five years. For RecSports, the total amount of reductions, when combined with the funds previously identified by the division, equals $659,000.

Dison briefly reviewed the budget reduction items that RecSports had identified. He reminded the committee of some of the division’s guiding principles in the decision-making process, including minimizing negative effects to the end user, taking a balanced approach, preserving core programs and services, and maintaining quality. The committee was supportive of RecSports’ plan to manage its budget reductions primarily because of the willingness to look internally for solutions with the lowest impact to students and users.

Clark Field Project Update
The Clark Field renovation project has been approved to move into design. The majority of funding for this project will come from donors. The renovation will include synthetic turf, a new track, new lighting, a support facility, and a footbridge across Waller Creek to the RecSports Center. The project is scheduled for completion in fall 2011.

Recreational Sports Center Bond Update
The RecSports Center bond will be paid off in August 2011. The division is working toward a plan to reinvest the funds previously marked for debt service toward maintenance and repair of aging RecSports facilities. The division is confident that University administration will agree to the plan, which will extend the life of existing buildings and circumvent the inordinate expense of having to replace them.
March 25, 2011 – RecSports Updates
Clark Field Project Update
Dison gave the committee a brief overview of the Clark Field renovation project, including proposed improvements, estimated budget, and tentative construction timeline. The project is in the design phase and is scheduled for completion in fall 2011.

Faculty/Staff Wellness
Dison reviewed for the committee some of RecSports’ current wellness initiatives. The Division of Recreational Sports has long played a role in promoting faculty/staff wellness with classes, programs, outreach, and collaboration with other agencies. RecSports will continue to work in tandem with other campus entities to encourage a well work force.

April 25, 2011 – Chair Election
An election was held for chair of the 2011-12 Recreational Sports Committee. Ronald Anderson nominated David Birdsong, who was unanimously elected.

Clark Field Update
Tom Dison presented conceptual design images of the proposed Clark Field renovation project and explained each of the proposed improvements. The majority of funding for this project will come from donors, and the project is slated for completion in the fall. Dison explained RecSports’ plans for keeping the project on track and on schedule. The committee was supportive of RecSports’ plans.

Development Update
The Division of Recreational Sports has partnered with Nike on two events this semester. Both events received an overwhelmingly positive response from student participants. Nike has expressed interest in working with RecSports on other events, including the next Longhorn Run. Conversations continue between Nike and RecSports’ development staff to further define the parameters of a potential long-term relationship.

Committee Activities/Meeting Topics for 2011-12

  • Introductions and committee overview
  • Election of vice chair
  • Review of divisional accomplishments from 2010-11 and goals for upcoming year
  • Recreational Sports budget updates for 2012-13
  • Membership and facility usage fees for 2012-13
  • Updates and announcements
  • Special topics as needed
Ronald Anderson, chair