Minutes: CUCEA Meeting
April 27, 2011
CUCEA Officers: Ernest Newbrun (SF) Chair; Douglas Morgan (SB) Vice Chair and EA President; Charles Berst (LA) Past Chair/Honorary Member; Marjorie Caserio (SD) Web Mgr; Adrian Harris (LA) Joint Benefits Committee Chair; Charles Hess (D) Past Chair/Secretary Pro Tem; Ralph Johnson (LA) Archivist/Alt Campus Rep; Lyman Porter (I) Treasurer; Louise Taylor (B) Past Chair/Information Officer.
EA Presidents: C. Roger Glassey (B); Bill Rains (D); Ted Quilligan (I); Eric Fonkalsrud (LA) President Elect; Anthony (Tony) Norman (R); Richard Attiyeh (SD);
EA Campus Representatives and Alternates: Ed Epstein (B); Paul Sheats (LA); Dericksen Brinkerhoff (R); Dorothy Rice (SF); Michael Warren (SC).
CUCRA Officers: Marian Gade (B) Chair; Lee Duffus (SC) Chair-elect
Center Directors: Patrick Cullinane (B); Sue Barnes (D); Jeri Frederick (I); Eddie Murphy (LA)
Guests: David Miller, Vice Provost UCLA/Director of Outreach; Arline Zuckerman, UCLA
Minutes of the October 2010 Meeting: Copies of the October 28, 2010 meeting held at UCB were distributed prior to the meeting and are also available on the CUCEA Website (http://cucea.ucsd.edu/). There were two corrections. One, Michael Warren (SC) should be included in the list of Campus Representatives attending the meeting. Two, Paul Sheats requested that the wording in the report of the Panunzio Award Committee (last page of the minutes) be modified to read as follows: “Paul Sheats indicated that the membership of the committee might be expanded to include former recipients providing that funds to support travel for committee purposes are available.” The corrected minutes were approved unanimously.
Officer Reports: Chair Newbrun gave the following report
CUCEA Chair’s report
CUCEA Meeting 4/27/2011 UCLA Faculty Club
Before starting on my Chair’s report, let me thank all the CUCEA Officers without whose support, encouragement and advice I could not function. Charley Hess willingly shares his wealth of experience whenever I have a question on policy, appointments, or precedence and has generously agreed to serve as interim secretary for this spring meeting. Louise Taylor, also, has always been available with all sorts of information and promptly forwards news items to other Officers and campus EF Presidents and delegates. Lyman Porter, our Treasurer, pays the bills efficiently and has provided us with the data on campus membership over the past several years, which we will be discussing later at this meeting. Charles Berst has performed yeoman’s work in publishing the Biennial Bio-bibliography Survey, that has been extremely useful in convincing the President of UC and Chancellors that emeriti play an invaluable role in university service and continue to bring renown to the university. Finally and by no means least, let me again thank Marjorie Caserio, our website manager who has edited the first edition of the CUCEA Newsletter, for her splendid work.
Those of us who served on the faculty of UC during the 1980s and 90s have known the best of times. Unfortunately the current faculty is experiencing the worst of times in terms of morale, financial support, recruitment, teaching load and future retirement benefits. When I assumed the Chairmanship of CUCEA in the middle of last year, faculty and staff had been forced to accept salary cuts euphemistically mislabeled as “furloughs” by the Schwarzenegger administration in Sacramento. However towards the end of last year some monies became available and UCFW committee spent considerable time debating how best to distribute such funds in salary increases. UCFW committee concluded that the most equitable way was to offer it to all faculty whereas the University Office of the President (UCOP) was adamant that any faculty salary increase be awarded only to those who had received promotions or merit increase during the previous year, omitting most faculty who only come up for review on two or three year cycles. UCOP claimed, without any substantiating data, that the “public would never stand for it,” whereas in truth the public ire was at the exorbitant salaries and other compensations that had been provided to some few in administration and which had been made public in the newspapers. All of this debate turned out to be irrelevant when Governor Brown was elected and revealed his plans for balancing the state budget that included a cut of $500 million in state support for UC. I have discussed the impact of such a severe cut on the University in the April 2011 CUCEA Newsletter that I hope you have all had a chance to read. UCOP administration’s contingency plans to deal with these diminishing resources are draconian. You have doubtlessly read of the tuition fee increases that have already been implemented and that will continue at about 8% rate per year eventually reaching an annual fee of about $25,000 per in-state student. The proportion of out-of-state students and foreign students at UC has increased as such students pay considerably higher tuition than in-state students. At some point the university will reach a tuition level when it will no longer be competitive with private institutions of learning, so there is a limit as to how much tuition can make up for decreased state financing. Since federal research grants are unlikely to increase and possibly will decrease such sources are not a viable alternative income. One campus, UCSF, derives 94% of its financing from grants, clinic income, and endowments with only 6% coming from the state of California, which raises the question at what point do we cease to be a state supported university?
UCOP administration is of course looking for ways to diminish costs but reducing the number of enrolled students will make little difference. Probably fewer faculty will have to teach the same number of students, more lecturers will be hired, and there is a pilot project for on-line teaching. Severe cuts in travel support are anticipated; some campuses have cut off hot water in bathrooms; library closing and/or consolidation are under consideration. Even more important is faculty recruitment and retention. Claims that 75% of recruitments are 1st choice are totally artificial; the implication that there is no recruitment problem is a dishonest misrepresentation. In actual fact many candidates at interview reject the financial offers made by UC campuses so no actual employment offer is made, even though that person may be the best candidate. The reality is that we hire quality faculty, but not the best available. In the long run this will influence how “good” UC is, we may no longer be the “best” public university. This is a common concern on the campuses; we are no longer the elite university that we were, the best in the world. UC’s premier reputation may be the last to go, by which time it will be too late.
How does all of this affect the emeriti? Certainly we must be concerned at the prospect of UC losing its sterling reputation as the top public university system. More directly, will it also affect our retirement income? We like to think that legally our pensions are secure and that may be so, but our own health benefits are gradually being reduced. There is serious concern that some ways must be found to either limit escalating medical, hospital and dental fees, reduce eligible benefits, or to increase patient co-payments for current UC employees. Will this eventually lead to renegotiation of emeriti contributions? Our Treasurer, Lyman Porter, has advised me that the annual support in the amount of $1,500 for CUCEA from the Academic Council has been eliminated. Inevitably this will spill over into reduced or no support from the Chancellors for campus emeriti and retiree activities. I hate to be the prophet of doom and gloom but from my perspective I must call it as I see it. I had much rather present you with an image of a rosy future, but alas I think we will need to tighten our belts and reduce our expenditures as well. I hope you will all co-operate in such contingencies.
Council of University of California Emeriti Associations
Adrian Harris observed that retirement benefits were not threatened by the current budget situation. Erni said he was concerned about the future of health care benefits given the continued increase in the cost of health care premiums and that the increased costs for both active employees and retirees are being paid by each campus. Paul Sheats raised the question about the support of CUCEA by the Academic Senate Council. Erni requested that this discussion be deferred until the Treasurer’s report. Doug Morgan observed that their Center Director was not able to attend because of the budget situation.
There was no additional report following the approval of the corrected minutes of the October 28, 2010 CUCEA meeting at UCB.
Lyman Porter reported that the budget of CUCEA has been consistent over the years he has served as Treasurer with income meeting expenditures. Combining the checking and savings accounts, there has been a balance of approximately $27,000. The loss of the $1,500 of annual support from the Academic Council will have a negative impact upon CUCEA’s budget if expenditures and income remain about the same. Although there is no need for immediate action, a plan for dealing with the loss of Council funds should be developed by the next meeting. Options include increasing the dues from $1.00 to $1.50 per member, increasing the number of members in our campus associations, or finding an alternative source of funds. Increasing the number of members may be problematical because some campuses are experiencing a challenge in recruiting new retirees to their associations. Although the information presented by Lyman on the dues collected from the campuses over the past 10 years show, in the aggregate, reasonable consistency, there is considerable variation in the data from individual campuses on a year to year basis. Additional study and data gathering on the actual number of emeriti association members on each campus may be necessary to determine if increasing membership is a realistic approach to resolving the current budget situation. A related question was whether or not the presence of a Retiree Center on a campus helped improve the number of members in that campus’s associations. Center Directors offered to help gather this information. Louise Taylor suggested that CUCEA should request the Academic Council to continue to support CUCEA at some level rather than cutting out the entire allocation. Having a placeholder could be important if the fiscal environment improves. Michael Warren supported this approach and Erni agreed to get the information that Lyman received from the Academic Council staff and will contact the chair of the Academic Council to explore the “placeholder” concept.
Information Officer’s Report
Louise Taylor presented the following report. The Information Officer is responsible for maintaining the CUCEA Roster of Officers, EA Presidents, Representatives and other members. The Emeriti Association Presidents have been a great help in keeping the CUCEA List current. Following the meeting, I will again be asking for updates and will send a revised list shortly thereafter.
You may recall my reporting last October that Joe Lewis, Dericksen Brinkerhoff, Lewis Cohen and I met in April 2010, following the Joint meeting to work on a protocol for a standard list of data UCOP will share with all the Centers and how best to share data with Associations that may not have any paid staff to monitor use of the information.
With the help of Daniel Scuiry of Joe Lewis’s staff, we made considerable progress this spring. On March 27, 2011 I emailed EA Presidents, CUCRA officers, and Center Directors advising them of: (1) A Standard demographic data report, which could be requested quarterly or semi-annually by all campuses. (It is the UCD standard report.) (2) An ad hoc economic impact report, which provides the number of retirees, by zip codes or city locations, and total annual payment to these retirees. (3) A second ad hoc report of zip codes for a campus.
The standard demographic data report, which can be in excel or text delimited format, includes:
Having received a response from only one Center Director, and no EA Presidents, this has gone nowhere. Several Officers made comments and suggestions. One included a request for email addresses, which, unfortunately, are not available to UCOP. Another questioned how campuses without Centers would handle this – a topic I have not yet taken to UCOP. Daniel Scuiry and Joe Lewis have gone to a great deal of work for us. I think the subject is important; however, if others disagree, I guess the topic ends here.
It is a pleasure working with everyone. E-mail is wonderful and brings me closer to so many of you with our brief exchanges.
Louise E. Taylor
Louise asked whether or not there was interest in her continuing to work with Daniel Scuiry to secure retiree information from UCOP in view of the low response mentioned in her report. Campuses without a retiree center have more difficulty in getting information from UCOP because the emeriti associations are not an official part of the University. In some cases the office of Vice Chancellor for Human Resources provides the information. The UCD Retiree Center gets information about retirees both from the Office of the President and from the campus’ Human Resources office. Eddie Murphy and Jeri Fredricks offered to help those campuses that did not have a retiree center. Louise said that she will continue to work with Joe Lewis and his staff to find ways to efficiently get retiree information to the campuses. She also requested that each Emeriti Association let her know who are their new officers and representatives so that CUCEA will have an up to date roster.
Web Manager's Report
Marjorie Caserio stated that her report for this meeting is basically a reminder that the CUCEA website is an information resource for CUCEA members, emeriti, and others with interests in UC retirement issues. Members should bookmark the address: http://cucea.ucsd.edu . The inclusion of UCSD in the address is because the server which houses the website is located on the San Diego campus. This does not mean that the web manager of the CUCEA site must be from the San Diego campus. I happen to be both at UCSD and the current web manager, but my successor is likely to be from another campus yet the site can remain on the UCSD server.
The site is continuously updated as new material becomes available. All the details regarding the CUCEA meetings are posted so that members can refer to this information if they forget or misplace the announcements that the Information Officer sends well in advance of our meetings.
The list of CUCEA members, Emeriti Association Presidents, CUCRA Officers, Joint Benefits Committee members, Office of President Benefits Staff, and Emeriti/Retiree Center Directors is kept current on the web. However, the e-mail addresses of members on these lists have been removed for privacy reasons. We can always change this if you wish me to do so.
The site is very simple to negotiate and includes articles and reports of current interest. I would like to post more content of this type. Your suggestions on new material would be most welcome.
As mentioned, the CUCEA list includes the names of the Directors of the campus retirement 'Centers.' Not all campuses have retirement centers. Those that do include Los Angeles, Berkeley, Davis, Irvine and San Diego. Santa Barbara does not have a Center although the CUCEA list names a Center Director at Santa Barbara (Debra Martin). On talking with Debra, she assures me that there is no physical UCSB Center and only 25% of her time is officially for the purpose of serving Retirees and Emeriti. This raises the question of whether to include another category of staff support for the campuses that do not have Centers.
CUCEA Web Manager
Although no formal action was taken, there was general agreement that it would be a good idea to have a second category of Retiree Centers that had part time staff and no dedicated physical space. Louise Taylor said she would make a differentiation in the listing of Center Directors in the CUCEA Roster.
Marian Gade, CUCRA Chair, thanked Marjorie for her help in getting a CUCRA website set up on the UCSD server (See:http://cucra.ucsd.edu/).
Chuck Berst said he will attempt to get the bio-bibliographic survey started prior to the October meeting so as to avoid the difficulty in gathering information during the holiday season. He encouraged the presidents of emeriti associations to provide support to the individuals they select to conduct the survey. He observed the combination of a letter followed by the on-line survey appeared to give the best response.
Roger Glassey (B), Bill Rains (D) Ted Quilligan (i) Paul Sheats (LA) Richard Attiyeh (SD), Dorothy Rice (SF), Doug Morgan (SB) and Michael Warren (SC) each presented a brief statement about emeriti association activities on their campuses. Copies of their full reports are available on the CUCEA website: http://cucea.ucsd.edu. Dericksen Brinkerhoff (R) said that his campus report was not available but he will send a report to Marjorie Caserio.
Reporting of Changes in Health Care Benefits: Louise Taylor and Ed Epstein raised concerns about the lack of cross comparisons of Health Care Plans in the materials sent to retirees during Open Enrollment last fall. Louise had information from one source that explained it was a cost saving effort. Another source said that someone forgot to make the comparison. The result was that it was more difficult for retirees to make informed choices of what plan would best meet their needs and their budget. Louise suggested that UCOP Human Resources should be asked to provide the information next fall prior to open enrollment. Adrian Harris said that it was unfortunate that the issue had not been called to the attention of the Joint Benefits Committee, but that he would add it to this year’s report. [Please note: Adrian Harris added as post script to the Joint Benefits Committee Report following the CUCEA/CUCRA meetings and it has been included at the end of the JBC report.]
University Committee on Faculty Welfare (UCFW) /Health Care Task Force: Erni Newbrun reported that the survey being conducted by the UCFW Health Care Task Force that he request Louise Taylor to send to Emeriti Association Presidents was meant for active employees and not emeriti or retirees.
Minimum Required Distribution (MRD): Erni Newbrun urged emeriti who have changed their investments to make sure that Fidelity knows that they should send out MRDs at the beginning of December or earlier otherwise Fidelity will wait until the last week of December. In case emeriti need to authorize sale of stock the payment may not be made before the end of the year and will not comply with IRS regulations.
Panunzio Committee: Paul Sheats requested that discussion about emeriti participation in the Panunzio Award Selection Committee be moved up on the agenda to accommodate the time of UCLA Vice Provost David Miller. For the past several years Dericksen Brinkerhoff has represented CUCEA on the Panunzio Award Selection Committee. At the October meeting it was suggested that an emeritus/a who had been a recipient of the Panunzio Award would be an excellent representative to serve on the Selection Committee if funds to cover the travel and per diem expenses associated with participation were available. Vice Provost Miller said that UCLA would be willing to cover one-half of the expenses, if CUCEA would provide the other half. Adrian Harris suggested that the Panunzio Endowment could be used to pay the full expenses. Paul Sheats thought there were restrictions on the use of the Panunzio Endowment that prevented the use of funds to cover travel expenses. Vice Provost Miller said he would check to see if it would be possible to use Panunzio Endowment funds for travel. Charles Hess moved that if other funding could not be found, the treasurer be authorized to reimburse up to 50% of the transportation and per diem expenses of an emeritus/a who had been a Panunzio Award recipient so that they could serve on the Panunzio Selection Committee. Motion was seconded and passed unanimously.
Joint Benefits Committee Report: Adrian Harris distributed copies of the following Joint Benefit Committee Report. It should be noted that Louise Taylor emailed copies of the report to CUCEA members on Monday, April 25th.
REPORT FROM THE JBC TO CUCEA & CUCRA, AT THEIR MEETINGS - AT UCLA - 4/27-28/2011
CUCEA and CUCRA function, among other things, as partners and advisors to the Office of the President on matters relating to retirees, annuitants, and retirement benefits. JBC, as an agent of both Associations, advises CUCEA and CUCRA by providing insights and information to aid in their partnership with the Office of the President.
JBC is gratified that COLAs for those who took the PERS/VERIP have now been implemented, following its inclusion as a recommendation in the report from the Post-Employment Benefits Task Force, and subsequent Regental action in December 2010.
With respect to various issues related to Health Care, we have a number of concerns and questions that we hope can be clarified by representatives of OP attending our April 2011 meetings.
(1) A questionnaire has been circulated by the Health Care Task Force of the University Committee on Faculty Welfare (UCFW) with copies finding their way into the hands of individuals involved with the leadership of CUCEA, CUCRA and the JBC, asking for views on how the limited amounts of money to be provided for Health Care should be used with respect to premium costs vs. deductibles and co-payments; and health care vs. dental and vision care. It was unclear if this survey was meant for those who have already retired as well, or only for active employees. We have made our feelings known in past reports. Our retirement payments are fixed, and will not increase in order to cover additional costs of health care. Further, older people generally require far more doctor’s visits and prescription drugs, so the higher the co-payments become, the greater impact on annuitants. Further, we do not have the ability to fund health care costs from before-tax income, as do active employees through Flexible Spending Accounts. It would be good to know the forward thinking of OP people regarding annuitant health care coverage and costs we will be expected to cover, as well as the intent of the questionnaire.
(2) Recently, there has been a concerted effort to foster “preventive medicine,” including inducements for individuals to participate in personal health assessments, one-on-one coaching, etc. through the UC Wellness Program. Have such efforts brought about the expected cost savings envisaged by the Health Benefits Task Force?
(3) It would be useful to have included as a member of UCFW’s Health Care Task Force, at least one retired faculty member who is attuned to and concerned with aging and geriatric health, including health insurance and prescription drug issues. This would also allow for information sharing with members of CUCEA and CUCRA. Perhaps the Chair of CUCEA, as a member of the University Committee on Faculty Welfare, can be supported in this request by members of the President’s Office staff
(4) The impact of national Health Care Reform on the University’s program is unclear. Several proposed actions under discussion in Washington D.C. could materially change the current program. Decisions made today can be materially impacted by future changes. Hopefully, the uncertainty of the future situation will make for more cautious current decisions. What is the forward thinking at the Office of the President on these possibilities?
(5) Concern has continued with respect to the rapid movement from brand-named drugs to generics, resulting from the expiration of drug patents. The quality of generics, many produced in a variety of foreign countries, varies widely, resulting in different results from using the brand-named drugs. It is our belief that UC should have only the highest standards for accepting generic drugs.
(6) There have been reports of annuitants receiving bills 2 - 3 months after a prescription is filled demanding significantly higher patient payments. Communication is essential, so that individuals need not pay amounts beyond what is required by University contracts. We would suggest that the entire University family be advised that they should not pay any bill that they cannot confirm is accurate. The Health Care Facilitators should be well informed in order to proactively advise retirees, if this practice cannot be stopped.
There is an item for discussion on the agenda of the joint CUCEA/CUCRA meeting, leading from very recent actions at UCLA, which could be of great benefit to all local associations, and to CUCEA and CUCRA. The two UCLA associations recently signed Affiliation Agreements with the campus Administration, which formally allows them to use the name UCLA. However, it does not bring with it insurance for activities or board members. Eddie Murphy, the Director of the UCLA Emeriti and Retiree Relations Center (ERRC) has been working with a group of administrators in the Office of the President who are supportive of creating a new Affiliation category for our organizations, which would include full recognition and hopefully University provided insurance as well. As long as such an arrangement does not disturb current positive arrangements such as those at UCSD and UCSC, it would appear to be a “win-win” proposition, and we support such a move.
One last point. Three members of the JBC have been working on a paper that describes the various actions of the past that have materially affected where we are now with our Retirement Program and Health Care. It is currently a “work in progress,” and will hopefully be available in the near future as a “memorial to the past” and a “reminder for the future.” We believe many of those who are currently leading the University have not had the benefit of institutional knowledge about how we have gotten to where we are, and we hope they will benefit from this paper.
We continue to look forward to cordial and cooperative relations with OP staff with whom we deal, for the mutual benefit of the University and its family of annuitants.
Adrian Harris, Chair, UCLA,
Julian Feldman, UCI; Jack Fisher, UCSD; Charles Hess, UCD; Richard Jensen, UCSC & UCSB; Louise Taylor, UCB; Ex-Officio: Marian Gade, UCB; Lee Duffus, UCSC; Doug Morgan, UCSB; Ernest Newbrun, UCSF
[Note: Member Larry Pitts is on temporary leave.]
P.S. At the meetings, an additional matter came up which lead to the following recommendation: “We propose that the open enrollment packets in future years include cost data for personal use in comparing various health plans. The spreadsheet formerly included was apparently eliminated because of cost. We believe a very low-cost document could be prepared and distributed in an economical way.” This recommendation was approved for inclusion in this report by the eight members of the JBC in attendance, and was also approved by CUCEA and CUCRA.
CUCEA members were given time to review the report. In the discussion that followed about requesting the appointment of an emeritus/s to the UCFW Health Care Task Force, Erni Newbrun said that you had to be careful of what you ask for. The time demands placed upon individuals who serve on the Health Care Task Force are large. It was suggested that an emeritus/a from one of the UC Medical Schools or Schools of Public Health be recommended. Adrian Harris suggested Jack Fisher, a member of the Joint Benefits Committee as a potential candidate. Richard Attiyeh moved that the JBC report be accepted. Marjorie Caserio seconded the motion and it was unanimously approved.
Marjorie Caserio reported that the status of the CUCEA Newsletter was a draft and that after members have a chance to read it and send her any corrections, it will be finalized. There were many very complimentary comments about the concept of the newsletter and the excellence of its contents and layout. Marjorie said the awards section had to be limited in size and so it only covered awards in 2010 and part of 2011. The cost of the newsletter was very modest and Suzan Cioffi did the printing without charge as long as the number of copies did not exceed 50. Printed copies would be sent to Chancellors and Provosts. Most copies will be distributed electronically and it would be on the CUCEA website. It was suggested that the newsletter be issued on a semi-annual basis. Marjorie said it would be very helpful to have some new software to prepare future issues. It was agreed by consensus that Marjorie should purchase the software and be reimbursed by CUCEA.
Nominating Committee Report
Proposed Slate of CUCEA Officers – 2011-12
Bylaws (2005): Officers shall be elected or confirmed yearly by the Council, and representatives shall normally succeed each other on July 1.
Council Officers include the Chair, Chair-Elect, Secretary, Treasurer, Information Officer, Web Manager, Historian, and Archivist.
The Nominating Committee, which included Charles Hess, Marjorie Caserio, and Louise Taylor, recommends the following slate of officers:
Chair 2011-12 Ernest Newbrun
Chair-Elect 2011-12 Doug Morgan
Secretary William Ashby
Treasurer Lyman Porter
Information Officer Louise Taylor
Web Manager Marjorie Caserio
Archivist Ralph Johnson
Historian John Craig
The Nominating Committee recommends that the 2010-11 Chair and Chair-Elect remain for a second year, in order to provide much needed continuity in leadership at this time.
Chair 2011-12 Nominating Committee
It was moved and seconded that the Nominating Committee report be accepted. The vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.
Charles E. Hess
Secretary Pro Tem
First draft: 4/30/11
Second draft including edits and corrections: 5/10/11