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March 28, 1990

          MINUTES OF THE UNIVERSITY COMMUNICATIONS NETWORK COMMITTEE

 

                           WEDNESDAY, MARCH 28, 1990

 

                         3:00 P.M./400-D BURRUSS HALL

 

  ATTENDING:     Richard Alvarez, Dave Beagle, Adrienne Bloss for Ed Fox, Erv

                 Blythe, Theta Bowden, Jamie Evans, Gail Gray, Tom Head,

                 Bernard La Berge, Judy Lilly, John Moore, Don Mullins, Lee

                 Pyle, Mark Sanders, Art Snoke, Matt Swift and Craig Woods

 

  Administrative Assistant: Ms. Dreama Webb

 

  Chairman Pyle called the meeting to order at 3:03 P.M.

 

  MINUTES

 

  Lee Pyle indicated that he made revisions to the original minutes based on

  suggestions by Art Snoke.

 

  Motion: LaBerge/Gray

 

  The minutes be approved and distributed to University Council.

 

  PASSED

 

 

  PROPOSED NAME CHANGE

 

  Lee Pyle indicated that Bob Heterick is supportive of having the name of

  the committee changed to more accurately reflect the broader role.  After a

  brief discussion, it was decided that University Communications Resources

  Committee would be more suitable.

 

  Motion: Snoke/LaBerge

 

  The University Communications Network Committee be changed to the Univer-

  sity Communications Resources Committee (UCRC).

 

  PASSED

 

  Lee Pyle said that he would notify Larry Harris of this action.

 

 

  100% COST RECOVERY PHILOSOPHY

 

  Dr. Art Snoke initiated discussion by indicating that the 100% cost recov-

  ery mandate means less operational flexibility than might be optimal.  He

  pointed out that charging for the inbound modem pools is very inefficient

  yet the modems have to be paid for and maintained.  Also, there is no con-

  sulting after normal working hours, and Network Services cannot expect to

  get a short-term recovery of costs for connecting users to the backbone.

 

  Erv Blythe reviewed the creation of the communications utility indicating

  that as far back as the time when Provost Wilson was serving the University

  there was an understanding that such an effort would have to viewed as a

  cost recovery business.  He said that it was not his decision nor those who

  work for Communications Resources to develop a 100% cost recovery policy;

  however, once the decision was made, he is required to managed accordingly.

  He went on to comment about faculty entitlements to communications services

  and the results of the survey done by subcommittee chaired by Janet

  Walberg.  Art Snoke pointed out that the survey reflects the concerns of

  the department heads and not necessarily the views of the faculty.  He read

  from the minutes of a previous UCNC meeting that urged the Faculty Senate

  to poll the faculty about communications entitlements, and he indicated

  that the Senate is planning to conduct a survey.

 

 

  Erv Blythe said the costs of providing voice and data connections to all

  faculty, staff and administrators would be $4,000,000 annually.  This in-

  cludes 6200 telephones and 5200 data connections.  He indicated that data

  connections on all phones would cost about $650,000-800,000 which includes

  debt service.  Also, he noted that we pay C&P Telephone $1-2 million per

  year for the services they provide to the University.

 

  With specific reference to the inbound modem pool matter, Erv said that

  they are not presently charging for this service.  It is being subsidized

  by the communications auxiliary.  The internal auditors have been concerned

  about some of these cross-subsidizing business practices and corrective

  actions will have to be instituted.  If the modem service is to be subsi-

  dized, the business office will have to develop a method of funding and the

  costs should be identified in the upcoming budget.  Matt Swift suggested

  that consideration could be given to transferring the costs from the auxil-

  iary to E&G, and he reminded the group that Erv Blythe is required to run a

  business; therefore, all costs have to be assigned to something.

 

  The operation of the computing center and the entitlements associated with

  this unit were discussed.  It was estimated that Smart dollars may be in

  the $10-12 million range.  Art Snoke said that it is difficult to under-

  stand why communications has to be 100% cost recovery while there is sig-

  nificant funding off the top for the computing center.  He suggested that

  this matter should be reviewed.

 

  Lee Pyle suggested that this is a complex issue that demands more informa-

  tion so the Committee does not waste time and energy.  He said the Univer-

  sity borrowed $16 million to develop the communications utility and knowing

  the conditions that were involved in establishing this arrangement could be

  helpful.  He asked Matt Swift to investigate the financial details so that

  we could identify the "givens".  Matt offered that the prevailing view of

  the central administration is that communications services should be 100%

  cost recovery.  Matt will report at the April meeting.

 

 

  POLICIES

 

  Chairman Pyle asked the committee how the policies packet should be han-

  dled.  Art Snoke suggested that the policies should be sent to Larry Harris

  with a cover letter asking for his recommendations as to a course of action

  for the existing policies as well as the handling of future policies.  Lee

  Pyle said he would write to Larry Harris and copy the committee members.

 

 

  NETWORK INTEGRITY

 

  Theta Bowden summarized the recent concern about network integrity relative

  to a malfunctioning broadband backbone and workstation.  Based on a ques-

  tion from the chairman, he said that Communications Resources has the au-

  thority to deal with such problems including disconnecting workstations.

  Theta said the initial approach is communicate with the departmental liai-

  son and this usually solves the problem.  He said there was no need for a

  policy beyond that recently passed by UCNC.  The chairman indicated that he

  would place this matter on the April agenda so that Ed Fox would have an

  opportunity to comment.

 

 

  OTHER MATTERS

 

  Mark Sanders inquired about the SSI mail system.  Theta said that students

  are currently being registered and the test system is expected to be oper-

  ating at the test level in the near future.

 

 

  The meeting was adjourned at 4:21 P.M.

 

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