Review of CU Regent laws, policies continues

Draft revisions to be noted on website, Staff Council told

A formal review of University of Colorado Regent laws and policies – 98 in total – is underway and the University of Colorado Staff Council (UCSC) will be able to offer feedback during the process.

Dan Montez, director of the Office of Policy and Efficiency (OPE), offered a brief overview of the review process to UCSC during its Sept. 15 meeting on the Anschutz Medical Campus.

Montez said the review has several goals: evaluate and simplify policies where necessary, better align the Regent policies with Administrative Policy Statements (APSs) and campus policies, remove outdated or irrelevant policies and update policy language.

Montez said one policy under review, for instance, hasn’t been changed since 1944.

The goal is to finish the process in two years. Patrick O’Rourke, vice president, university counsel and secretary of the board, will lead the review in coordination with Leonard Dinegar, senior vice president and chief of staff. Also involved will be representatives from system and campus administrations and shared governance groups.

A new website is in development and will allow interested parties to keep track of the process. The website will include a list of laws and policies under review along with any draft revisions and other notes about the document.

Also at the meeting, members received an update from UCSC member Gaylynne von der Nuell, who is serving on a committee charged with potentially equalizing the university’s tuition benefit across all campuses. The committee is headed by Susan Szpyrka, senior vice chancellor administration and finance at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs, and includes the chief financial officers from each campus as well as faculty and governance group members.

The committee is hammering out a proposal that likely will be ready for review in the spring. Although the group is in the early stages of discussion, von der Nuell said the committee’s leading plan is to develop a three-year pilot program that would provide an annual dependent benefit of $2,400 or a similar amount. The benefit would be the same for each campus. During the pilot program, data would be collected to determine whether the benefit was successful as well as financially feasible.

The current tuition benefit for dependents -- and also employees -- differs from campus to campus, in part because each campus must finance the benefit. Those differences, and when and if the benefit can be used at other than the employee’s or dependent’s home campus, have been a topic of discussion for several years.

UCSC currently is finalizing a survey on work and benefits – which includes questions on the current tuition benefit – intended to gauge how staff members currently use – or don’t use – benefits and why. That survey is expected to be sent out in October and the results will be shared with campus administration.

In addition to conducting the survey, council’s agenda items for the upcoming year include developing a proposal for paid parental leave for staff members and revising the Service Excellence Awards requirements.