ELT Minutes, September 13, 2012

 Extension Leadership Team Meeting Minutes

Thursday, September 13, 2012

102B Libby Hall

Facilitator:    Jon Prichard

Note taker:    Dennis Harrington

Present:         Fran Sulinski, Lisa Phelps, John Rebar, Jon Prichard, and Dennis Harrington.

Caribou Hall Update: The Caribou Hall parking lot permitting process is underway with the City of Bangor. The redesign of the front entrance is on hold due to permitting problems.

Paper Clover Promotion: The Maine 4-H Foundation has begun the 2012 Clover promotion, which we encourage everyone to support.

Centralized Database Update:  The centralized database project has experienced another delay due to an unexpected vacation taken by one of the key designers. As a result, the next milestone for testing will be delayed approximately one week.  Michele Lodgek, as the project leader, has expressed our frustration to the company who is building the new system.

FY13 Funding for Program Leadership Teams: Based on feedback received from faculty leaders of Extension Program Leadership Teams, the ELT has decided that PLT funding for FY13 in the amount of $8,000 per Team will be awarded without the need for existing teams to re-apply. Dennis Harrington will communicate the new intentions in an email accompanied by the parameters under which the ELT prefers the funds are spent. PLT accounts will be funded after the start of the new fiscal year.

Non-Salary Faculty Appointment: The ELT recently received a proposal to allow a non-salary faculty appointment. The practice is somewhat common in academic departments but new to Extension. Fran Sulinski and Mark Hutchinson are beginning work with representatives of the PAC to define parameters for non-salary faculty Extension appointments.

Local Funding for Nutrition Associates: The ELT is aware that some County offices are exploring ways to fund the loss in hours for Eat Well staff that are scheduled for reductions as a result of lost funding from SNAP-Ed. We want to clarify that proposals for this type of funding should be carefully vetted by the County Program Administrator in partnership with Fran Sulinski and UMaine’s Human Resources Department so as not to violate employment contracts. We also want to stress that in cases where the contract permits the funding, the County will be responsible for the full cost of the additional hours including fringe benefits, travel, and staff development costs where appropriate.

The Fort Kent Extension office needs to vacate their building by December 31st. John Rebar has been working with the University of Maine at Fort Kent to find a University building that could house the office. UMFK is supportive and has guaranteed that they will supply temporary space until a more permanent space is available, hopefully within a short time.

Program Administrator Search: In light of the recent unsuccessful search for a Program Administrator the ELT has decided not to re-open the search at this time. We will continue to explore ways to better meet program leadership and supervision needs, and to alter the balance of work for the combined position of Executive Director/Program Administrator/Financial Administrator.

ELT Schedule Change: The ELT agreed to change the ELT meeting on Oct. 16th to Oct. 23rd.

Bond Proposal: John Rebar updated the ELT on activities to educate the public about the campaign to finance a new plant and animal diagnostic facility at the University with a State bond. The citizens of Maine will have the opportunity to vote on this issue in the November elections.

Personal Sustainability Project Update: The Personal Sustainability Committee has received over 100 responses to their online survey and is still encouraging staff members to take the survey. They are looking for interviewees for a more in-depth study. They will be analyzing data during October.


  • Extension Professor John Jemison has been asked to join President Ferguson’s faculty roundtable group to discuss issues regarding the academy.  John is an outstanding faculty member and will represent the perspective of Extension well on this group.
  • The University of Maine 4-H Shooting Sports Program (UMaine 4HSS) has established an account in the MidwayUSA Scholastic Shooting Trust. Donations to this fund are currently being matched 3:1 by the owners of MidwayUSA. Currently, the account balance is over $50,000.00. Additionally, UMaine 4HSS has received donations of equipment from the Youth Shooting Sports Alliance of over $3000.00 and from the NRA Foundation of over $3500.00.
  • Kathy Hopkins and Debra Kantor are co-teaching an academic class on the Orono campus: “Honors 399 – Field on the Family Farm”.
  • Congratulations to Debra Eckart, who has been awarded $14,340 from Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) – Office of Elderly Services to help support the Senior Companion Program.
  • POS #201 – Program Development & Marketing Professional – final – Welcome to Shelby Downing who is joining the staff at UMaine 4-H Camp & Learning Centers at Tanglewood & Blueberry Cove. Shelby will be working on program development at Blueberry Cove, and overseeing marketing for both camps.

Status on searches as of:  updated 9-14-12

POS#200         Extension Educator, Assistant Extension Professor (Agronomist) Presque Isle –Coordinating telephone screening

POS #203        Program Administrator — Internal Search – Failed Search

POS #204        Youth Dev/Food System Professional – Waldo County – awaiting approval to advertise

POS #205        Parent Education Professional – Waldo County —  awaiting approval to advertise

POS #206        Nutrition & Food Systems Professional Kennebec/Somerset Counties –JD and PDQ in development.