NO. R-1. Joint resolution relating to the Vermont State Colleges.
Offered by: Committee on Rules.
Whereas, the protracted labor negotiations between the faculty and the administration at the Vermont State Colleges (VSC) have suggested concerns about the future of the colleges, the communications between the faculty and the administration, the role of the faculty in planning and curriculum development, and the goals and directions of these important institutions to the young people and citizens of Vermont, and
Whereas, these issues ought to be examined and reviewed objectively, and recommendations should be developed for the renewed growth and enhancement of the state college system, outside the context of a contentious labor dispute, and
Whereas, the strength and well-being of the Vermont State Colleges must be maintained as the system provides unique and vital opportunities to Vermont's citizens; fully 66 percent of the Vermont students are in the first generation of their families to attend college, now therefore be it:
Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives:
That a Legislative Committee on the Vermont State Colleges is established to be composed of four members of the House appointed by the Speaker, not all from the same political party; four members of the Senate appointed by the Committee on Committees, not all from the same political party; one member to represent higher education in the state, not affiliated with the Vermont State Colleges, appointed by the Commissioner of Education; one member, selected by the Vermont Business Roundtable, to represent the business and industry sectors who regularly contract for training programs or employ VSC graduates; and one member representing labor interests, not affiliated with the Vermont State Colleges, appointed by the Vermont State Labor Council; and none of these last three members shall have been active participants in any of the political or other activities related to the VSC labor dispute, and be it further
Resolved: That the committee shall examine and make recommendations, if appropriate, to the concerns raised by the Faculty Assemblies of the four state colleges in their votes of no confidence in the chancellor, including, but not limited to, historical trends related to the allocation of system resources for administrative salaries relative to faculty salaries, use of part‑time and full‑time faculty, participation by the faculty in curriculum development and strategic planning at the colleges and across the system, communications among and between the college campuses and between the faculty and the administration, and the ongoing working relationships within the VSC community, and be it further
Resolved: That the committee also review and calculate the past and future financial contributions of those current faculty who will not be eligible to participate in the early retirement program as a result of the recent labor negotiations, and recommend any appropriate means, including viable funding sources, to mitigate the personal and systemic losses to the faculty, and review and calculate the annual cost to VSC for the current early retirees until such time as the cohort all reaches age 65, and estimate an annual cost for those eligible for early retirement through 2010 until they reach age 65, be it further
Resolved: That the committee may meet no more than six times during adjournment of the 2005 session, and for attendance at meetings, legislative members shall be entitled to compensation for services and reimbursement of expenses pursuant to 2 V.S.A. § 406 and nonlegislative members shall be entitled to compensation and reimbursement as provided members of boards under 32 V.S.A. § 1010, and be it further
Resolved: That the committee may have the assistance of the staff of the Joint Fiscal Office, the Legislative Council, and the Vermont State Colleges administration, faculty, and staff, and be it further
Resolved: That the committee shall submit its findings and recommendations to the General Assembly on or before January 15, 2006.
The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street