The Pitt News

Board of Trustees grants new authority, officially installs Humphrey

By Dale Shoemaker / Assistant News Editor

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The Student Affairs Committee of Pitt’s Board of Trustees can now recommend mandatory fee increases directly to the Budget Committee.

At its public meeting in the William Pitt Union on Feb. 27, the Board of Trustees, which meets at least three times a year, approved a resolution unanimously to grant the Student Affairs Committee this new authority. Friday was their first meeting of 2015. More than 50 people attended the meeting. The fee increases that the Committee can approve, according to the resolution, include the student activities fee, computing and network services fee, the transportation fee and the athletic and student recreation fees.

The revision cuts out one step in process to increase fees. Previously, the Student Affairs Committee would recommend a fee increase to the Budget Committee, who would then recommend the increase to the Board for approval. After the Board approved the increase, they would add the increase to the annual budget. Now, Budget Committee no longer has to approve the fee increases.

Mandatory fee increases range from $10 to $40 per academic year, according to the resolution.

“Since the Board approves the budget, they still have ultimate control over the fees. It streamlines the process,” Ken Service, Vice Chancellor for Communications, said.

Service said no major changes should be expected because of the resolution. 

“It’s strictly a procedural thing to try to make things work more efficiently,” he said.

The changes were made, the resolution stated, to quicken the process of imposing fee increases.

The Board also introduced new member Bradley J. Franc at Friday’s meeting. Franc is a director of the Pittsburgh law firm Houston Harbaugh.

The Board also passed a resolution officially electing Kathy Humphrey as senior vice chancellor for engagement and chief of staff. Humphrey, formerly the Dean of Students, was named to her new role on Jan. 14.

“The Board extends its congratulations and warm welcome to Kathy Humphrey and looks forward to working with her as an Officer of the Corporation,” the resolution stated.

The Board passed a third resolution changing the titles of Arthur Ramicone and Jerome Richey. Ramicone, whose current title is Chief Financial Officer, will now be a Senior Vice Chancellor and Chief Financial Officer, and Richey, who is currently General Counsel, will now be Senior Vice Chancellor and Chief Legal Officer.

“The intent of this resolution,” Chancellor Patrick Gallagher said, “is to consistently use the term ‘Senior Vice Chancellor’ to identify that layer of University management.”

Later, Gallagher gave a formal report addressing recent events and activities at Pitt, like the Give a Thread campaign, which began in December, and the Pitt Dance Marathon held earlier this month, Pitt’s newest rankings by Kiplinger’s, and his Feb. 13 memo on sexual assault and violence. He also announced the University will hold town hall meetings on March 18 and 20 to “hear public feedback.”

He ended on a note of hope for the coming quarter.

“This University continues its record of great accomplishments and it has enormous momentum. Our agenda is still being formed but it’s not going to be by changing direction. We’re still following the same North Star.”

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Board of Trustees grants new authority, officially installs Humphrey