DAFVM Faculty Senate


May 11, 2000 Regular Meeting
Time: 12:45 p.m.
Place: Billie Nowlen Conference Room Lloyd Ricks

Senate Membership
Boyd, Brook, Chen, Columbus, Cox, Deeds,Demaris, Ebelhar, Ezell, Hague, Hood, Hovermale, Hudson, Ingram, Jack, Killcreas, Kingrey, Linford, Looken, Malone Phillips, Nebeker, Schneider, Snipes, Stuart, Starks, Thompson, Trevathan, Varco, Waldhalm, Walker, Willeford, Wang, Winter, Zuercher

Absent excused
Columbus, Demarais, Ezell, Hovermale, Starks, Winter

Absent unexcused
Hague, Kingrey, Linford, Wang

Division Administrators
Lee, Brown, Fox, Karr, Tompson Watson

1. Approval of Minutes from Previous Meeting
Minutes were approved as distributed.

2. Guest Comments--
Dr. Danny Cheatham representing Dr. Charles Lee gave a run down on how the various units faired in the legislative budget. Over all the division faired well. The separately budgeted units all had some increase in recurring funds.

Dr. Cheatham also reminded the senate members of the Ag Summit III in Jackson at the Hilton on June 8.

3. Chair Report
Dr. Jacque Deeds chair reported on the recent DPAC meeting at which Vice President Lee gave his vision for the Division. Senate members received copies of the document by email and were asked to provide comments either directly to Dr. Lee or to Deeds to be forwarded to the Vice President.

4. Vice Chair Report-Vice Chair
The Vice Chair Evan Nebeker reported that he had attended the last Division Council meeting and most of the items had already been reported.

5. Robert Holland Faculty Senate Report
Nebeker reported the Holland Senate's received a letter to consider the parking issue. They also received the information that lapsed salary resides in the Provost's office. The Holland senate elected new officers and their minutes are available on web

6. Official Consideration of New Recommendations
The senate received a request to review the definition of service as it should be applied to the division. Motion was made by Boyd, seconded by Zuercher to refer the definiton of service to the Faculty affairs committee. Motion passed.

7. Standing Committee Reports

Charter & Bylaws Committee Report

The Charter & Bylaws Committee met on April 4th, 2000 to discuss the following agenda items:

1. Review of current faculty list for DAFVM representation assessment.

2. Review of Charter & Bylaws regarding

a. Meeting frequency
b. Alternate ways of raising issues with the DAFVM


As required by the DAFVM Charter (Sec. 1.1 Composition), a current list of faculty within the division was requested from the DAFVM Senate Vice Chair. Review of the list (attached) resulted in the following recommendation for changes in representation:

1. The State Program Leaders (SPL) are recognized by the Charter as a separate unit. There are currently four individuals with the title State Program Leader (Susan Holder, Michael Ouart, Beverly Howell, and Joseph McGilberry). At present, this unit has no representative on the DAFVM Senate. However, the committee recommends that the SPL faculty be merged into their respective departments/units and reference to this separate Aunit@ be struck from the list of units in section 1.1.2 of the DAFVM Charter.

Analysis of the faculty list resulted in only one unit having sufficient change in faculty numbers to potentially warrant a change in number of representatives. The Agricultural Economics Unit (AEC) dropped from 21 to 20 faculty (a drop that would have led to a loss of one representative for that unit). This change was due to the absence of Lanny Bateman, Bill Herndon, and John Robinson from the list, plus the addition of Terrill Hanson and Diane Hite, resulting in a net decrease of one faculty member. However, the committee was informed that a replacement for Lanny Bateman has been hired (to start in June), and that Bill Herndon still has a 50% appointment in the Agricultural Economics Department. Also, the position vacated by John Robinson will be filled in the near future. Therefore, the committee recommends no change in the number of representatives from AEC.

The discussion concerning the representation of the AEC Unit led to the additional recommendation that section 1.1 of the charter be amended to add the word Aposition@ after reference to faculty, as follows (recommended changes are in italics):

Each unit (department, research and extension center, or equivalent) shall have one (1) representative, except where the unit has fewer than 4 faculty positions, in which case that unit will be combined with a complementary unit by the appropriate administrator for representation purposes. Units with 21 to 40 faculty positions shall have two (2) representatives and units with 41 or more faculty positions shall have three (3) representatives. During the initial three-year period, one-third of the representatives shall be elected for 1, 2, or 3 years, respectively, thereafter for 3 year terms, except to fill unexpired terms. The number of 1, 2, or 3 year terms shall be divided as equally as possible among the groups listed below (Sections 1.1.1 through 1.1.4) with 1-, 2-, and 3-year terms being determined by a draw.

It was the opinion of the committee that this change would eliminate the ambiguity of having open positions when representation was being determined.

Meeting Frequency

The committee recommends the following amendment to section 1.5 of the charter (changes in italics):

The Senate shall meet once a month in regular session. The Chair has the authority to cancel a meeting if there are no reports from committees (old business), and no new business has been proposed (by letter) at least three business days prior to the meeting. A regular monthly meeting may also be cancelled if the Chair has advance notice of the lack of a quorum for that meeting. Special meetings of the Senate may be called by the Chair of the Senate or by petition of twenty-five percent (25%) of its voting members. A quorum shall consist of an absolute majority of the Senate membership.

The committee also recommends the following amendment to section 2.4.a. of the Bylaws (changes in italics):

a) Regular monthly meetings of the Senate shall be held in the second week of each month, except when there are major schedule conflicts, when the Chair determines that there is insufficient business to warrant a meeting, or when the Chair has advance notice of the lack of a quorum. In the event of such schedule conflicts, or lack of business, the meetings shall be held as needed.

It was the opinion of the committee that these changes would reduce the number of meetings held simply to fulfil the requirement that there be a monthly meeting.

Raising Issues

The committee recommended the following amendment to section 2.5.1.a. of the Bylaws (deletion noted by overstrike):

a) Each proposal for study or recommendation by the Senate must be presented to the Senate Chair in writing with proposer's name appearing thereon. Each proposed study or recommendation shall be read or distributed by the Chair to the Senate prior to a vote to accept or adopt the study or recommendation.

The committee agreed that the ability to submit anonymous proposals would encourage faculty members to raise sensitive issues without fear of reprisal.

Several additional amendments were recommended by the committee to correct typographical errors, or to update Unit names. These amendments were: 

  • Charter, Section 1.1.2
  • - delete the term "cooperative" from AMississippi State University Extension Service"

    - change "Agricultural Education and Experimental Statistics" to "Agricultural Information Science and Education"

    - change "Staff Development" to "Organizational Development"


    Charter, Section 1.6

  • - add the word "to" to the sentence "The Senate shall make recommendations to the Vice President for the DAFVM as needed to accomplish the objectives listed above."
  • The Report of the Charter and Bylaws Committee for amendments was approved with an amendment to Section 1.5 of the charter made by Snipes seconded be Ebelhar giving the chair authority to cancel a meeting if no business has been proposed at least "five" business days in advance instead of three.

    The amendments will be incorporated in to the Charter and Bylaws on the web site.

    8. Unfinished Business
    The motion was made by Boyd and seconded by Ebelhar to approved the report of the Ad Hoc Committee on Consulting and Outside Employment and to urge Vice President Lee to pursue some uniformity of the campus policy. Motion passed

    9. New Business
    The only new business was the election of chair and vice chair for 2000-01. Dr. Larry Zuercher of Landscape Architecture was elected chair and Dr. Steve Waldhelm was elected as vice chair.

    10. Adjourn

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