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Inside Iowa State, a newspaper for faculty and staff, is published by the Office of University Relations.

March 16, 2005

Regents propose change to state conduct code for university students, employees

by Anne Krapfl

Iowa State's proposed strategic plan for 2005-10 was well received by the Board of Regents, State of Iowa March 15. The regents have asked for a "dashboard" of performance indicators, acceptable and useful to all three schools.

In introducing the proposed strategic plan, President Gregory Geoffroy called it a "roadmap for the future" that was inspiring while reflecting current realities. He said it contains specifics yet allows for flexibility and sets up a framework from which colleges and other major units can develop their own strategic plans. Above all, it's short so that readers arrive quickly at key ideas and goals, he said.

In other business, the board approved a motion from its own education and student affairs committee to begin the process of changing the section in chapter 9 of the Iowa Administrative Code covering personal conduct of students and employees of regent institutions. The proposed changes would allow universities to punish students and employees for misconduct that occurred off-campus or "at or during" university-authorized events. Proposed new language also specifically cites "failure to disperse" from a riot or unlawful assembly as punishable.

The change process, by law, must include publication in the Iowa Administrative Bulletin, public hearings on the university campuses (including written comments from anyone unable to attend) and formal approval by the board. The intent, said Susan Anderson, an attorney in the board office, is to move forward with the process this spring and try to have the new conduct rules in place by fall semester.

Legislative update

The board approved a motion in support of an increase in the state cigarette tax to boost state revenues. The question was posed by regents deputy executive director Gary Steinke during his report to the board.

Regent Mary Ellen Becker, Oskaloosa, noted that in their dual role as regents and trustees of University Hospitals, their support of a higher cigarette tax is an endorsement of a healthier lifestyle and higher education.

"A higher cigarette tax would help fund the shortfall in Medicaid funding and reallocation of other state funds to other priorities, including higher education," she said.

Regent Michael Gartner, Des Moines, noted that a higher cigarette tax also would discourage "our students" from smoking.

Steinke said the proposed Regents' Partnership Plan for Transformation and Excellence "is being considered seriously by all caucuses in the Legislature," with funding proposals ranging from $6 million to the full $40 million. "There's no way to gauge at this time where the Legislature will come down," he said.

Parking fees

Iowa State is proposing changes to fines related to parking and driving on campus. The fines haven't been adjusted in more than 10 years (with the exception of the fine for parking in spaces reserved for people with disabilities).

Changes to the campus fine structure also require a change to the Iowa Administrative Code. The regents directed Greg Nichols, executive director of the board staff, to file the revisions with the state.

As proposed, the fine for unauthorized use of a parking permit would double, from $40 to $80. Numerous moving violations - driving on campus sidewalks, driving on bike paths, failure to comply with traffic signs, driving around a barricade, for example - would go from $20 to $30. The fine for an expired parking meter would go from $5 to $7.50 and an illegal parking ticket would cost $15 instead of the current $12.

Parking permit fees for faculty and staff would go up 2.9 percent o 4.1 percent on July 1, under a rate adjustment reviewed by the regents. Parking rates will be approved at the May 4-5 meeting. Following are the proposed permit increases:

Annual permit fees

Proposed FY06

Actual FY05


General staff$108 $1043.8%
24-hour reserved$692$6654.1%

Since the university now manages the parking ramp at the Memorial Union, the regents also review those rates. As proposed, on July 1, the cost for the first half hour or less would increase from 50 cents to 75 cents, and the maximum daily rate in the ramp would increase from $6 to $8.

Iowa Public Radio

The regents also:

  • Approved the charter membership of the executive council of Iowa Public Radio, a merger of public radio stations at the three regent universities. University appointees are: Warren Madden, vice president for business and finance at Iowa State; Steve Parrott, director of university relations at the University of Iowa; and Steve Carignan, director of the performing arts center at the University of Northern Iowa. Board appointees are Arthur Neu, an attorney from Carroll and former regent (to a 3-year term); and Kay Runge, director of the Des Moines Public Library (to a 2-year term). If a statewide "friends" group is created for Iowa Public Radio, a member of that group could be appointed to non-voting membership on the executive council. The board of regents also was informed that Livingston Associates, public radio placement specialists in Baltimore, Md., has been hired to assist in the search process for an executive director of Iowa Public Radio.
  • Approved changing the name of the department of chemical engineering to the department of chemical and biological engineering.