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February 26, 1992

                                    Minutes

                            COMMISSION ON RESEARCH

                               February 26, 1992

                                206 Sandy Hall

                                   3:30 p.m.

 

 

  MEMBERS PRESENT:  T. Brandon, C. Burger, J. Lee, R. Olin, M. Stephenson, E.

                    Stout, V. Wall, T. Wildman

 

  MEMBERS ABSENT:   V.  Bonomo, J. Cowles, M. Denbow, E.  Henneke, G. Hooper,

                    M. Lambur, R. Lytton, R. Rich, P. Scanlon, A. Swiger,  J.

                    Wightman

 

  INVITED GUESTS:   D. Shelton, J. Tank, S. Trulove, J. Viers

 

 

 

  1.  ANNOUNCEMENTS.    1.   Dr. Stout announced that the Special Faculty Ap-

      pointments document has passed University Council.  It will be distrib-

      uted to the general faculty.  2.  According to the  Attorney  General's

      office  the  Conflict of Interest procedures need clarification of lan-

      guage.  Dr. Stout stated that if there are any substantive changes,  he

      will bring a draft back to the Commission.  Dr. Burger asked if it will

      have  to go back to University Council again.  Dr. Stout responded that

      he hopes not if the changes are only cosmetic.

 

  2.  AGENDA.  Dr. Stout added one agenda item - Nominees to  the  University

      Intellectual  Properties  Policy Committee.  Dr. Wall motioned approval

      of the agenda.  Dr. Wildman seconded.  Agenda was approved.  Dr.  Stout

      then  provided  the membership with copies of the Research and Graduate

      Studies Division annual report.  Susan Trulove was the  author,  editor

      and publisher.  Dr. Lee asked if it would be shared with other faculty.

      Dr.  Stout  responded that they intended this first report to be an on-

      campus distribution.  Ms. Tank asked what he hopes to use it for in the

      long run.  Dr. Stout responded that in the long run we want to  use  it

      primarily  as  a  marketing tool to inform the university community and

      outside constituencies about the great things  that  are  happening  in

      graduate  studies  and research.   He also said that it will serve as a

      year by year chronicle of activities.  Dr. Stout provided  the  member-

      ship  with  copies of the Department of Energy proposed budget and pro-

      grams, National Science Foundation budget summary, and some  statements

      by  D.  Allan  Bromley about the proposed federal budget in science and

      technology.

 

  3.  MINUTES OF JANUARY 22.  Dr. Stout asked  for  additions/corrections  of

      the  Minutes.    Dr. Wildman stated that he was listed as both here and

      not here.  He was here.  With that correction, Dr. Stout  asked  for  a

      motion  to  approve.   The Minutes were approved.  Dr. Olin asked about

      the FRS Committee.  Dr. Stout responded that we have a  long  list  and

      that they would be forwarded to Mr. Shelton as soon as possible.

 

  4.  BUDGET  UPDATE.    Dr.  Stout  provided  the  Commission with copies of

      Virginia Tech Summary of Reductions and Actions of the Senate and House

      of Delegates 1992-94 Biennial Budget.  Starting July 1, 1992 the annual

      reduction in the Research Division after round 4 is approximately $7.2M

      per year or 23% of the total budget.   The university  is  now  in  the

      process  of  doing  part  1 of round 4 - the 3% reversion.  For the Re-

      search Division that is $812,000.  We are taking that from two sources:

      1) The $425,000 is salary savings that have not been  distributed  back

      to  colleges.   2) The remaining $387,000 will be taken from the excess

      30% account.  On the third page of the handout the Budget Office has an

      analysis of the Governor's budget for the 1992-94 biennium.  Dr.  Stout

      stated  that  the  Governor has authorized a tuition increase up to 11%

      with an additional 7% the second year.  The Equipment Trust Fund appar-

      ently will have some money - $40M.  This $40M is from  refinancing  the

      bonds  they  have  already sold.   Virginia Tech's share would be about

      $8M.

 

      In the budget reductions proposed for Virginia Tech there is 5% for in-

      struction  and  5% for research.  The Commonwealth Centers in the first

      year of the biennium will be fully funded - funded at  the  level  they

      are  now.   In the second year they will be reduced by about 30% and in

      the next biennium, 1994-96, they will be reduced to zero.    Basically,

      we get three additional years of the Commonwealth Center funding but at

      reduced levels.  Since the beginning of the College of Veterinary Medi-

      cine  there  has been an appropriation of $50,000 to support new initi-

      atives  in  veterinary  medicine  research.    That  funding  would  be

      eliminated.  The Volunteer Development Center which is part of the Pub-

      lic  Service  Division  now  would  lose a major part of their funding,

      $87,185 for the biennium.  In the Governor's budget the Cooperative Ex-

      tension Service is proposed to be reduced by 29% - $12.2M.  The Univer-

      sity is supporting an amendment to add it back.

 

      Dr. Stout stated that the last page is Virginia Tech's part of the bond

      package.  The major items in the general obligation bond are  Phase  IV

      for Vet Medicine - $8.4M out of the bond issue and $1.3M out of nongen-

      eral  funds;  Engineering/Architecture  is the largest project - $17.7M

      would come from the bond package;  $6.2M  would  come  from  nongeneral

      funds.    The  Governor's bill would have that $6.2M come from Research

      overhead.  If we get a bond package and if that language stays, we have

      major problems of finding $6.2M in research overhead.   There is  money

      in  the  bond package for conversion of Major Williams to academic use.

      In the Winchester office and laboratory complex (one of the  Ag  Exper-

      iment  Stations)  the  $700,000 in nongeneral funds would come from the

      sale of existing facilities at Winchester  once  the  new  building  is

      built.  The Biotechnology Infill is the biotechnology building which we

      have  been  pursuing.   It is a $9M project (we have about $2M from the

      USDA) and if we get $4.5M from the Federal government we  will  have  a

      hole here to fill ($400,000 minimum).

 

      On  the  Actions of the Senate and House of Delegates handout - it is a

      summary of the budget bills as they came out of each house.  The Senate

      would restore $6.5M for Extension or about half of what we lost.    The

      Center for Innovative Technology would have $11.5M restored by the Sen-

      ate and the House would add $9.7 back so it looks like CIT will wind up

      about  where  they are now.   Both the Senate and House would basically

      restore the 2% salary reduction that we had in December of  1990.    It

      will  come in December of 1992.  Dr. Olin asked if it will just go back

      to the way it was or whether it will be distributed to  departments  to

      disburse.  Dr. Stout stated he did not know how it will be handled.

 

      Ms.  Tank  asked if graduate students are in that group.  Dr. Stout re-

      sponded yes.  He stated that if graduate teaching assistants get an in-

      crease then graduate research assistants  will  as  well.    Dr.  Stout

      stated  that  there  was  an amendment that would reduce funding for 13

      public service and research centers across the state.  Two of these are

      here - the Coal and Energy Center and the Water  Center.    The  Senate

      amendment is to cut the Coal and Energy Center by $44,000 in the second

      year  of  the  biennium  and to cut the Water Center by $122,000 in the

      second year as well.  The House of Delegates would restore $5M  to  Ex-

      tension so they might wind up with between $5 and $6.5M somewhere.  The

      Virginia  Housing  Research  Center  would be reduced by $225,000.  The

      Housing Center was created by the legislature in 1989.

 

  5.  IMPLEMENTING THE NEW CONSTITUTION.  Dr. Stout stated that last year the

      university passed a new governance system which was to take  effect  at

      the  end  of this academic year.  The Commission on Research membership

      list was provided to the members.   Dr. Stout stated  that  Dr.  Harris

      sent  the  chairs  of commissions and committees a request for nominees

      for presidential appointments about three weeks ago.    Basically,  the

      letter from Dr. Harris says that there is so much to do and that every-

      one  who  serves on a committee or commission will be asked to stand in

      place one more year.  Ms. Tank questioned whether  it  was  across  the

      board to place an SGA representative on all commissions and committees.

      Dr. Stout said that it is written in the constitution to have an under-

      graduate  student,  graduate student and classified staff member on all

      commissions.  Dr. Stout informed the commission that as far as he knows

      everyone's term continues for one more year.

 

  6.  NOMINEES FOR INTELLECTUAL PROPERTIES COMMITTEE.  Dr. Stout stated  that

      the  Commission on Research elects a faculty representative to serve on

      the Intellectual Properties Committee.  Dr. Stout stated that  we  need

      to  nominate  two  faculty members of the Commission.  He said that Dr.

      Hooper will try to give as broad a representation and yet  try  to  get

      faculty with competence to serve on the Intellectual Properties Commit-

      tee.    Dr. Olin asked what time was involved in serving on the commit-

      tee.  Dr. Stout responded that the committee meets once a month for  an

      hour.    The  primary business that the IPC does is decide who owns the

      intellectual property whether it be the  university  or  the  inventor.

      Once  the  committee  decides  who owns it, then they decide what to do

      with it.  Dr. Stout stated that it  is  almost  always  transferred  to

      VTIP.    He  said  that in the new structure there will be two or three

      subcommittees.  One subcommittee would make these ownership  decisions.

      If the inventor does not like that decision, there is an appeal process

      to  the  full  committee.   There is another subcommittee of a somewhat

      larger group consisting of most of  the  faculty  representatives  that

      would  be advisory to VTIP on such things as to whom could we go to for

      more information on this intellectual property (what the marketing  op-

      portunities  are, what the patent possibilities are).  Dr. Stout stated

      that it had not been an onerous task in terms of time.   He  said  that

      Legal  Counsel  is an ex officio member as well as Dr.  Ray Smoot.  The

      committee, therefore, has legal and business experts to  turn  to  when

      needed.    Dr. Olin volunteered to serve.  Dr. Denbow was nominated and

      seconded to serve.  Dr. Lee moved that nominations be closed.  Dr. Wall

      seconded.

 

  7.  ADJOURNMENT.  Meeting was adjourned at 4:35PM.

 

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