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Board of Trustees to consider Capital budgets, state biennial budget impact, OHIO accreditation update, and the Cambridge center surplus property during August meeting

Discussion will continue related to implementation of One OHIO strategy
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE | Aug 8, 2019

ATHENS, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2019) – The Ohio University Board of Trustees will be asked to consider capital budgets, the impact of the state biennial budget, an OHIO accreditation update and the Cambridge center surplus property during their meeting on Aug. 19 at the Ohio University Russ Innovation Center in Beavercreek.

The Board will also hear an update on the implementation of the University’s One OHIO strategy, which aims to integrate of all OHIO’s campuses and functions into a single system operation.

Key agenda items, efforts and initiatives that OHIO’s Board and senior leadership are scheduled to discuss include:

29 Park Place and Carriage House renovations
When:  Resources, Facilities, and Affordability Committee, 10:30 a.m. Aug. 19, Building 70

The Board will consider adding $1.2 million to the project cost of the renovation and ADA improvements project at 29 Park Place and the Carriage House on the property. The increase would bring the overall cost to $3.5 million.

The request is necessary due to several factors:

  • An increase in material costs due to current market conditions, an increase in the overall cost due to the strength of the economy, and unforeseen costs due to utility and code requirements to convert the building from residential occupancy to business use.
  • An increase in the OHIO Honors Program cohort from 300 to 425, with a projected continued increase, which requires additional staff and need for accessible space.
  • The schedule is also a factor, as the Park Place project is a critical first domino for a series of interrelated projects connected to the Russ College of Engineering and Technology renovation of the West Union Street Office Center. Current occupants of Trisolini House will move into 29 Park Place, and Culinary Services will move from the West Union Street Office Center into Trisolini. Delays in either project could result in a delay of the Russ Research Opportunity Center project.

State Biennial Budget Update and Impact
When:  Resources, Facilities, and Affordability Committee, 10:30 a.m. Aug. 19, Building 70

Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration Deb Shaffer will review the state biennial budget and its impact on OHIO. The final state operating budget authorizes a 2 percent increase in the FY20 State Share of Instruction (SSI), followed by a 1 percent increase in FY21.The Board-approved budget for FY20 already included an assumption that the state would increase SSI by 1 percent. The final state budget is projected to provide the University with approximately $1.7M in unbudgeted revenues. Shaffer will also provide trustees a multi-year outlook for SSI, and how declining enrollments are projected to impact Ohio University’s share of SSI in future years.

Trustees will also hear an update on State Line Item Appropriations impacting Ohio University. The FY20-21 biennial operating budget includes significant state investment in programs unique to OHIO, including the Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs’ Appalachian New Economy Partnership, as well as the George Voinovich Academy for Excellence in Public Service; the Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine’s AHEC Program support, Family Practice, Geriatric Medicine, Primary Care Residencies and OHIO clinical training; and Library depositories. In total, the final FY20 state line item appropriations provide an additional $3 million as compared to the University’s FY20 budget, for specific investment in the associated programs.

One OHIO Update
When:  Academics and Student Success Committee, 1:30 p.m. Aug. 19, Building 70

Executive Vice President and Provost Chaden Djalali, Interim Executive Dean for Regional Higher Education Nicole Pennington and Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer Brad Cohen will provide an update on the implementation of this initiative that will integrate the University’s multi-campus operation. They will share details of how the integration process is actively underway and how multiple workstreams involving faculty, staff and leadership from across the institution have defined milestones and measurable outcomes.

Since the Board endorsed the One OHIO concept at the March 2019 meeting, the University has continued planning efforts, begun transitioning into implementation, taken necessary steps to strengthen the connections between all of OHIO’s functions and campuses, and to break down internal barriers to the innovation necessary to make supporting critical changes.

OHIO Accreditation Update
When:  Academics and Student Success Committee, 1:30 p.m. Aug. 19, Building 70

Provost Djalali and Interim Associate Provost, Institutional Research & Effectiveness and Higher Learning Commission Accreditation Liaison Officer Loralyn Taylor will provide an update on OHIO Accreditation since the University was notified by regional accreditor, The Higher Learning Commission, that the Academic Quality Improvement Program Pathway was being phased out and that the University would be placed on an Open Pathway.

They will give an update on the feedback the University received from the Higher Learning Commission, such as how OHIO’s System Portfolio was accepted with no interim monitoring or institutional response required and how OHIO received a rating of “Strong, clear and well presented” on 18 of 21 core Accreditation requirements. They will also talk next steps in the transition to the Open Pathway.

Capital Projects
When:  Resources, Facilities, and Affordability Committee, 10:30 a.m. Aug. 19, Building 70

The Board will be asked to consider a resolution for the following five construction projects:

  • Stocker Roof Replacement: This project, with a budget of $3.3 million, would address deferred maintenance by replacing the clay tile roof on Stocker Center. This project is funded by state capital appropriations and deferred maintenance Century Bond funding. If approved, the construction would take place in FY21- FY22.
  • Porter and Lindley Halls Window Replacement: This project, with a budget of $2.8 million, would address the deferred maintenance and energy efficiency needs by replacing 337 windows in Porter Hall and 306 windows in Lindley Hall. Work will also include removal of lead paint and asbestos glazing in the materials around the windows. 2012A bond funding from the Energy Performance Bond would fund this project, which is pending Ohio Air Quality Development Authority (OAQDA) approval. In the event the project doesn’t qualify, funding will be swapped with a qualifying energy project planned to be funded by Century Bond or state capital appropriations. The construction would take place in the end of FY20 going into FY21.
  • Alden Library Air Handlers 3 and 4 Replacement: This project, with a budget of $1 million, would replace air handlers 3 and 4 in Alden Library, enabling better control of humidity and temperature for proper storage of library equipment and print media as well as adequate occupant comfort. This project is funded by emergency funds and state capital appropriations. The construction, if approved, would take place in the end of FY20 going into FY21.
  • Campus Steam System Repairs 2020: This project, with a budget of $750,000, would address steam distribution and tunnel improvements for the Athens Campus steam system. Work for this project will be coordinated with the summer campus steam outage to minimize impact. This project is funded by state capital appropriations. The would take place in the end of FY20 going into FY21.
  • Morton Chilled Water Connection: This project, with a budget of $610,000, would connect Morton Hall to the University’s chilled water loop. New supply and return lines will be extended from the existing chilled water lines into Morton Hall to connect to the existing building cooling system; existing absorption would remain in place as backup/load shed. This project is funded by deferred maintenance Century Bond funding. The construction is set to take place in the end of FY20 going into FY21.

Sexual Misconduct Prevention and Support
When:  Academics and Student Success Committee, 1:30 p.m. Aug. 19, Building 70

Vice President for Student Affairs Jason Pina will present Trustees with research that shows college-aged individuals are at the highest risk of experiencing sexual and gender-based violence, and that nationally 20 to 25 percent of college women and 15 percent of college men will experience rape or attempted rape in their careers. His presentation will provide insight into the University’s progress and current efforts to address sexual misconduct through prevention and support.

Pina will share examples that include the University’s Survivor Advocacy Program and how the collaborative approach to prevent and address this issue can be done within the campus and community.

Treasury Update
When:  Resources, Facilities, and Affordability Committee, 10:30 a.m. Aug. 19, Building 70

Shaffer will report on the timeline to issue the next tranche of tax-exempt debt in support of the Board-approved Capital Improvement Plan, as well as an update on the transition to Fund Evaluation Group as the investment advisor to Ohio University and the Ohio University Foundation.

Resolution for approval of Cambridge Center as Surplus Property
When:  Resources, Facilities, and Affordability Committee, 10:30 a.m. Aug. 19, Building 70

The Board will be asked to approve a resolution for the Cambridge Center, a University-owned classroom space located between the regional campuses in Zanesville and St. Clairsville that has struggled to remain occupied, to be designated as surplus and placed for sale.

The property purchased in 2013 in Cambridge was invested in to create classroom spaces. It is located on 0.68 acres of land and consists of a 7,500-square-foot building and a 539-square-foot brick garage. The space currently is vacant and has been deemed not viable from a financial perspective.

Consistent with the goals of the One OHIO initiative and to improve efficiencies within the regional higher education system, management is recommending that the property be sold. If approved by the Board, OHIO officials will work with the Ohio Department of Administrative Services in accordance with the Ohio Revised Code.

Resolution for Easement - Renewal Process & Retroactive Delegation for Capital Projects
When:  Resources, Facilities, and Affordability Committee, 10:30 a.m. Aug. 19, Building 70

The Board will be asked to approve a resolution that allows for the easement renewal process to be changed, delegating authority to execute existing easement renewals to the Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration, but will only apply to easements that are to be renewed. This resolution will help streamline the easement renewal process since it currently stands that all easements to be renewed are first reviewed, surveyed and appraised by the Ohio Department of Administrative Services, then reviewed, surveyed and approved by the University’s Office of Real Estate, the Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration and finally approved via resolution by the Board.

The Board will continue to approve all new, non-capital project related easements.

Facility Report
When:  Resources, Facilities, and Affordability Committee, 10:30 a.m. Aug. 19, Building 70

Senior Associate Vice President and Chief Facilities Officer Steve Wood will provide the Board the annual facilities operational report, including KPI’s, benchmarking, sustainability, and energy costs and efficiency information. Additionally, the Board an update on facility projects that are currently underway.

The full agenda for the June Board of Trustees meeting can be found on the  Trustees’ website. The main board meeting will be streamed  live at this link.

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Contact:  Carly Leatherwood, Senior Director of Communication Services, at 740-597-1940 or leatherc@ohio.edu. Visit OHIO's  official media page  for the latest University news and updates, or follow us on Twitter  @ohioumedia

About Ohio University
Ohio University strives to be the best student-centered, transformative learning community in America, where approximately 40,000 students realize their promise, faculty advance knowledge, staff achieve excellence, and alumni become global leaders. OHIO is committed to fostering, embracing, and celebrating diversity in all its forms. Our Athens Campus offers students a residential learning experience in one of the nation’s most picturesque academic settings. Additional campuses and centers serve students across the state, and online programs further advance the University’s commitment to providing educational access and opportunity. Visit  www.ohio.edu  for more information.