October 21, 2008

BAS Steering Committee Meeting

Moulton Union North Conference Room
9:00 am
Present:  Lisa Rendall, Sarah Morgan, Allen Delong,  Tama Spoerri, Eileen Johnson, Denise Trimmer, Michele Gaillard, Keisha Payson. Absent:  Scott Meiklejohn

Recap of BAS Committee Appointees Breakfast:  BAS sponsored its second annual breakfast for administrative staff members of college committees on October 1 in Pinette Room at Thorne Hall.  The breakfast is an opportunity for outgoing committee members to brief incoming members on the role of the committees, how often they meet and other interesting information.  Attendance was smaller this year due to fewer committees but the discussion was congenial and lively.

Report on Commute Another Way Day:  Eileen expressed her committee’s gratitude for the budget contribution from BAS.  CAW sponsored two events to encourage more energy efficient options for commuting to Bowdoin.  Approximately 20 people attended the bag lunch get-together for employees interested in knowing more about ride-sharing. About the same number showed up for the biker/walker breakfast.  There was good energy and dialogue at both events.  Our committee discussed several ideas including advocating for a 4 day work week, telecommuting, providing information about gathering locations for ride sharing and making CAW part of the college Wellness Program.  

Appointment of Co-Chair:  The role of Co-Chair of the Steering Committee was discussed.  The Co-Chair will act as the understudy of the Chair (Lisa Rendall, Operations Manager, Residential Life) and take over the top spot next year.  Allen Delong, Director of Student Life and Smith Union, graciously accepted the two-year commitment.

Sarah Morgan volunteered to be our web master and will update the website for us.  

Watson Arena Tour:  There were very positive reactions to the idea of a BAS-sponsored tour of the new hockey arena.  Scott Meiklejohn has agreed to be the tour guide.  The committee discussed appropriate dates in early December and will make a final determination at the next meeting.  

Bowdoin Staff Assistance Fund Update:  BAS would like to take a lead role in advocating and facilitating contributions to the Bowdoin Staff Assistance Fund.  Tama informed us that it is a fund, originally set up by faculty members, that provides cash assistance specifically to Bowdoin staff members and is administered by Tama.  After the United Way campaign is over, the Steering Committee will send an email to administrative staff with a contribution form attached.  We will also add a description of the fund to the BAS website with a link to the form.  Tama explained that any contribution is a recognized gift to Bowdoin for tax purposes and thus tax-deductible.

HR Update (Tama):  There will be three paid holidays this year at the end of the year and three at the beginning of the year.  December 24, 25, 26 and December 31, January 1 and 2 are paid holidays. 
HR may be closed between December 22 and January 2 for repairs to the sewer system at McLellan.
The announcement of Open Enrollment will be Friday, October 24.

Allen asked Tama if there was any move on the part of the college to establish tax parity for domestic partner benefits. Bowdoin provides health coverage for domestic partners, however, federal tax policy leads to employees with domestic partner coverage not qualifying for equal tax benefits, resulting in higher income taxes than employees claiming family coverage.  Allen asked that this issue be considered at the Benefits Advisory Committee.

Meeting adjourned at 10:00 am

Respectfully submitted,
Michele Gaillard