ELT Minutes, January 6, 2014

Extension Leadership Team Minutes
January 6, 2014
Orono – Libby Hall 122

Facilitator: Lisa Phelps 

Notes: John Rebar

Present: Lisa, John, Jon Prichard, Fran Sulinski & Dennis Harrington

Part of the meeting will be devoted to conducting telephone interviews with candidates for the Compliance and Special Projects Professional Position.

Jane Haskell and Fran will be facilitating a “Signature and Emerging Programs” criteria setting session for Provost Hecker on Friday, January 10.  The effort is intended to establish criteria for academic and research programs to be measured against “Signature and Emerging Programs” for UMaine.  Cooperative Extension is facilitating, but not participating in this process, as we have already identified our signature programs (Maine Food System and 4-H Youth Development).  Emerging programs will occur within these two areas with an example being 4-H Science.

The new employment application management system “HireTouch” is being implemented at UMaine.  Fran will be announcing upcoming training opportunities for staff in the near future.

Funding for 2014 for the County Extension Associations is stable with all county CEA’s receiving flat funding or slight increases.  No counties are being cut.  State funding for the University of Maine System is flat for FY 2014 and FY 2015 and the UMS Board of Trustees has decided not to increase tuition for the biennium.  The result of these decisions coupled with settled collective bargaining agreements with all unionized employee groups, will result in a budget cut for FY 2015.  No decision as to the size of the FY 2015 University budget cut to Cooperative Extension has been made.  Federally, the passage of a budget has yet to produce clarity regarding the national support for Cooperative Extension from the USDA.  It will likely be some time before the FY 2014 funding is announced.  The ELT is anticipating a cut from our FY 2012 funding level but we are hoping the cut won’t be as large as was inflicted by the sequester cut of FY 2013 which was $203,000 or a 8.8% cut.  The US Farm Bill is still under negotiation with the US Congress with no clear end in sight.  The Farm Bill authorizes the existence of the federal Cooperative Extension System, so it is very relevant to the land-grant system.

Caribou Hall (Penobscot County Extension Office). UMaine Facilities Management is conducting a feasibility study regarding the proposed kitchen for the meeting room of Caribou Hall.

The Maine 4-H Foundation conducted a year-end fund raising campaign.  And, under the leadership of Susan Jennings, the Maine 4-H Foundation is completing its first Annual Report in several years.  This report will be shared electronically with all staff and is an impressive document of the value of 4-H for Maine youth.

Announcement Invitation:

The ELT invites you to submit items to be included in the minutes/announcements of the next regularly scheduled ELT meeting. This is an opportunity to share with the ELT and the rest of the organization any of the following:

  • Notable programmatic accomplishments
  • Development or fundraising success
  • Significant new partnerships and/or opportunities
  • Important transitions

Please take the opportunity to share your good works through this avenue.  Keep it brief… approximately two to four sentences would be appreciated. To submit an announcement, please contact your PA or appropriate member of the ELT.

Please remember to visit University of Maine’s news site for additional University of Maine Cooperative Extension highlight.


Kathy Hopkins, Seanna Annis and Beth Calder were awarded $ 9,245.00 by the North American Maple Syrup Council Research Fund for the proposal, “Detection of Toxins in Contaminated Maple Syrup.”

Congratulations to Wesley Neff, who has been awarded $312,150 from Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) to continue the Maine Families program in Waldo County for FY14.  Maine Families home visitors partner with parents and parents-to-be to access the information and resources that can support the physical and emotional health of their baby and entire family.

Search Updates:

POS#208 Small Farm Business Professional – Posting early January

POS#211 Crops Specialist – Accepting applications

POS#212 Special Projects & Compliance Professional – Accepting applications

POS#213 4-H Youth Development Professional – Posting early January

ELT Meeting Dates – 2014

 Meetings are from 9:00 am to 3:30 pm – unless otherwise noted

January 27 Rebar Prichard Orono — 102B Libby Hall
February 13 Prichard Harrington Orono — 102B Libby Hall
February 27 Harrington Sulinski Augusta — 124 Jewett Hall
March 19 Sulinski Phelps Orono — 102B Libby Hall
April 2 Phelps Rebar Orono — 102B Libby Hall
April 24 Rebar Prichard Augusta — 218 Richard Randall Center
May 16 Prichard Harrington Orono — 102B Libby Hall
May 29 Harrington Sulinski Augusta — 218 Richard Randall Center
Sulinski Phelps
Phelps Rebar
Rebar Prichard
Prichard Harrington