Iowa Board of Regents

September 12-13 Meeting Recap

September 13, 2018

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The Board of Regents met at the University of Iowa Memorial Union in Iowa City September 12-13. Key items reviewed by committees and the Board are outlined below.

Property and Facilities Committee
Five-year capital plans for state funds, UIHC and other funds were approved. The Board’s capital request for FY 2020-24 totals $224.3 million, including $54.3 million for FY 2020. This request would be used for deferred maintenance and library modernization at the University of Iowa and Iowa State, in addition to other projects.

The University of Iowa received permission to proceed with planning its 53,000 square foot renovation of the Art Building, built in 1936. The building, which has been unoccupied since the flood of 2008, will be revitalized into the interdisciplinary center for innovation and discovery. This project will be funded by gifts.

Iowa State received permission to proceed with planning of its new Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory (VDL). The $75 million project, funded by state appropriations, private giving and university funds, will update and modernize ISU’s current VDL, which has not had a substantial infrastructure change in more than 42 years. The ISU VDL is the only full-service and accredited veterinary diagnostic lab in the state.

Academic Affairs Committee
The University of Iowa requested permission to close its MA in Urban and Regional Planning program and eliminate its department of cardiothoracic surgery. The committee recommended the creation of a new BS program in Cyber Security Engineering at Iowa State. The ISU College of Engineering identified cyber security as one of its strategic research areas in its latest strategic plan. The full Board will consider these proposals at its November meeting. In addition, the UI added a professional MBA (online) to its program offerings, beginning in August 2019.

Both the UI and ISU requested approval to close a number of on-campus centers, including the University of Iowa Labor Center, which drew a number of speakers to the Board’s public comment period. The University of Iowa announced its plans to close the Labor Center in July, citing a decrease in state funding. 

Investment and Finance Committee
The committee received the investment and cash management report for the second quarter of 2018, in addition to the annual report on peer group comparisons. These reports update the Regents on financial endowments of the enterprise and on how those endowments are performing in comparison to their peer groups.

Audit and Compliance Committee
Auditor of State Mary Mosiman presented FY 2017 reports of recommendation from various audits of the Regent system. Board of Regents Chief Audit Executive Patrice Sayre reviewed numerous internal audits. Sayre also presented Navigant Consulting’s audit of the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital.

University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics Committee
UI Vice President for Medical Affairs and Dean of the Carver College of Medicine Brooks Jackson presented the hospital report. Dr. David Stoltz presented a report on Cystic Fibrosis research at the UI.

Public Comment
Ten speakers, a record, signed up to speak to the Board prior to the meeting. Most presenters spoke about the proposed closing of the University of Iowa Labor Center. The Board also voted to amend its policy manual to make the public comment period a permanent part of all future regularly-scheduled, in-person meetings. 

Personnel Appointments
Dr. Daniel Grooms was appointed the Stephen G. Juelsgaard Dean of the Iowa State College of Veterinary Medicine, effective October 1. 

Board President Report
President Richards stated that the Board would present a multi-year tuition plan at its November meeting in Cedar Falls. He noted there are three components to funding the public universities, which are tuition, state appropriations, and savings and reallocations. All three come together to represent the Regents total funding figure.

FY 2020 Appropriations Request
The Board approved a $628.4 million state appropriations request, which included an increase of $18 million in higher education funds compared to FY19. Of this $18 million, the UI and Iowa State have requested $7 million each, with UNI requesting $4 million. These requests will be used for student financial aid.


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