D. President Lee T. Todd, Jr. Announcements
President Todd made some announcements before reviewing PR 1. He informed the Board that an e-mail would be sent to the employees later that afternoon announcing that January 2, 2009 would be an extra paid holiday this year for eligible faculty and staff. He noted that the announcement does not apply to the hospital because it is difficult to extend that benefit to the hospital staff. The hospital staff has other benefits that they receive, and this is part of the equalization program.
President Todd noted that December 24 had already been announced as an extra holiday this year. While the staff could not be financially awarded with salary increases during the 2008-09 fiscal year, the extra two holidays is a way of expressing appreciation to them. It will also allow them to have more time with their families and to possibly attend the Liberty Bowl in Memphis and support the football program.
President Todd announced that the medical campus had collaborated with dozens of health care providers in going tobacco-free on November 20 in Lexington. He said that he was proud to announce that those same steps will be taken to eliminate the use of tobacco from the rest of the campus. He has appointed Dr. Ellen Hahn, a College of Nursing faculty member and director of UK's tobacco policy research program, and Anthany Beatty, assistant vice president for campus services, as co-chairs of the university's Tobacco-free Task Force. He thanked them for their willingness to serve in this capacity. He noted that he will be working with them to select other members of the task force. The task force will be responsible for developing the new tobacco-free policy as well as putting together a timeline for its implementation.
Dr. Hahn has done a yeoman's service across the state of Kentucky in working with communities who are considering going tobacco-free. She has had conferences in Lexington for 50 or 60 different counties. The purpose of the conferences was to learn about what has been done in Lexington. Shortly after the conferences, two or three of those counties became tobacco-free. President Todd said that he is proud of the hospital for taking the initiative and setting a task for the university to do it campus wide.
President Todd informed the Board of another e-mail he had sent to the employees regarding a message to the Council on Postsecondary Education about the impact of an additional 4 percent budget cut. He called attention to a graph that was included in the e-mail, representing the budget cuts and explained the various dots showing six mid-year cuts. He explained that these budget cuts clean out the reserves that are used for deferred maintenance, faculty start-up packages, and other things that come up during the year. He also provided a table showing that the university was cut a total of $88.5 million dollars throughout the budget for 2007-08.
President Todd called attention to a flyer about the presentation of Our Lincoln at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. on February 2, 2009. He thanked Dr. McCorvey for presenting Our Lincoln to the United States and said that it will be a proud moment for the state of Kentucky. The Kentucky congressional delegation is excited about attending the event.