January 17th, 2005

  • Location: Sayles-Hill 251
  • Time: 4:15 pm
  • Present: Staff Members Shelby Boardman, Bruce Colwell, Robert Oden, Rod Oto, and Fred Rogers; Faculty Members Laura Goering, David MacCallum, David Musicant, Steve Strand, and Anne Ulmer; Students Jaime Anthony, Seth Cooper, David Holman, Colin McLain, and Becca Stark; Alumni Observer Neil Chaffee; Trustee Observer Louise Heffelfinger.
  • Absent: Staff Member Jean Hayes.
  • Guests: Budget Committee Members David Davis-Van Atta and Cris Jensen; Staff Member Elise Eslinger.
  • Secretary: Jaime Anthony

Approval of Minutes

The College Council minutes for the meeting of November 8, 2004 were approved unanimously.
President’s Report

President Oden opened the meeting with comments on the budget report. He emphasized several points regarding the process for developing the budget, namely its earlier start time and its more comprehensive nature. President Oden noted that the largest expenses in the College’s budget come from financial aid and faculty & staff compensation, and that the largest sources of revenue come from tuition, the Alumni Annual Fund, and the endowment spending formula.

Budget Discussion

Dean Boardman began discussion of the budget by describing the process taken by the Budget Committee this year. The Budget Committee accelerated its time table for the budget proposal, with the benefit that the extra time allows the committee to discuss the broader financial priorities of the institution. After its fifth meeting of the year, the committee made its recommendation of the budget to the College Council, with the hope that the Council will approve the budget and pass the recommendation to the Board of Trustees.

VP Rogers continued the presentation of the budget by discussing two memoranda concerning the budget. The first is a memo sent to budget managers describing the process of budget allocation. The second notice outlines the changes in the budget changes for 2005-2006. The stand-out change in the budget is the adjustment to the cost of room and board. Currently, housing charges are much lower than they should be, in addition to being lower compared to the amounts charged by comparable institutions. In the upcoming year, the housing charges will increase to adequately reflect the price of housing. Additionally, here will be increases in board and the student activity fee. Grant aid is realizing the largest dollar increase in the budget, with a percent increase of 11.25%, putting Carleton on average with other liberal arts colleges. Spending from the endowment will remain approximately the same. Overall, there is an anticipated revenue increase of 4.4%. A notable change in expenditures is the 3.5% increase in salaries. This increase will be divided among the faculty and staff. Two other areas of expenditure increase are the library and information technology.

Following his presentation of the budget changes, VP Rogers opened discussion to all Council members. There was general approval of VP Rogers’ changes in the budget process. Student Seth Cooper noted that because Carleton is a different market than many of our peer institutions, the increase in room fee may be questionable. To this, VP Rogers noted that although there are not comparable schools in rural Minnesota, there are schools in rural areas of other states. President Oden added that students living off-campus are subsidizing with their tuition payments those living on-campus, and the increase in the board fee will equalize this problem. Student Becca Stark brought up for discussion the issue of funding a shuttle to the Twin Cities. The Council agreed that access to the Cities is important, and hope that the College can determine an affordable way to provide transportation to the Cities. Finally, students commented on the increase in the comprehensive fee by suggested that fee statements come with an explanation; as they are, the statements are sometimes hard to interpret. It was also suggested that a letter be send to parents explaining changes. The Council briefly discussed the idea of each class paying a fixed comprehensive fee, and concluded that there are complications associated with this concept.

The College Council unanimously approved the 2005-2006 budget proposal.

Weapons on Campus

Following up on discussion from October 11, 2004, Student Dave Holman informed the College Council that there are weapons stored in the Security office in Sayles. Dave plans to investigate the possibility of storing guns at a local gun club.

The meeting was adjourned at 5:35 pm.

Respectfully submitted,
Jaime Anthony