In his report for the January 15 Senate meeting, President Lightstone invited those who have been critical of the University’s projected budget estimates to bring their analyses to Senate for discussion. We agree that such a discussion should occur, in the context of Senate’s overall responsibility for academic matters at the university. We also suggest that this analysis begin its path to the Senate floor with the Budget Subcommittee of the Senate’s Planning, Priorities, and Budget Advisory Committee. In spite of President Lightstone’s suggestion that budget analysis be put on the Senate agenda, he also perceives those who have previously questioned the size of the University’s projected deficit as “sowing the seeds of mistrust of the senior executive team” (a questioning which he seems to assume has been done without any publicly expressed rationale or discussion). We find the President’s position surprising, given that President Lightstone himself reported to Senate that the University would provide alternate budget models in January. These alternative models were to be based on modifications of the assumptions (e.g., enrolment increases, interest rate changes) underlying the budget projections. This multiplicity of models validates the idea that the underlying assumptions are debatable and the magnitude of the resulting budget deficit estimates is indeed variable. We hope that no one interprets the President’s words in a way that stifles the questioning of underlying assumptions, expenditure decisions, revenue directions, pension projections, and any other element of the budgeting process.
Included in the Information, Technology and Infrastructure Committee report to Senate is a detailed presentation by Janet Muenzberger (Project Manager, Campus Planning, Design and Construction) on the post-Cairns renovations and move. This complex project involved 23 departments in eight different buildings and its cost will be approximately $2.18 million. In addition to its general interest, the report may provide insight into what might be expected following future construction-related moves (before and after pictures are included).
Complete Senate reports can be found at: https://brocku.ca/webfm_send/29755.
Linda Rose-Krasnor, Ph.D.
Professor, Department of Psychology
President, Brock University Faculty Association
500 Glenridge Avenue St. Catharines ON Canada L2S 3A1
Phone: 905-688-5550, ext. 3870 | Fax: 905-688-6922