Extension Council Minutes
Minutes March 2019 Extension Council
The March 2019 Extension Council meeting was called to order by Nancy Derby at 6:32 p.m.
Those present: Dave Mills, Jo Bauer, Janell Baum-Thomas, Zach Howell, Nancy Derby, Jake Franklin, Matthew Franklin, Trinity Mata, Katie Sellmeyer, and Jennifer Suckow.
Also present: Doug Harlan, Trinity Johnson, Jamie Boas, Doug Gucker, Candice Hart, Staci Coussens and Caitlin Mellendorf.
Minutes the November 2018 meeting were read and approved.
Fiscal Update: Doug provided the Council with an update regarding the Unit’s budget. He said that the Unit had received all of its State County Board Match payment for FY 2018. He also told the Council that Extension had received the $5 million that former Governor Rauner had given to us in 2018. This money is being held on campus. Doug said that he didn’t know for sure what Extension Administration planned to do with the money. He told the Council that the Unit had received all but $20,000 of it FY 2019 County Board money. Doug went over the fiscal report. He pointed out that the Unit was only 31% spent on its budgeted expenses. He stated that he did not expect any major expenditures for the balance of the fiscal year. The Unit was in very good fiscal condition.
Personnel Update: told the Council that Jenny Bates-Mashkey and Olivia Warren started work as Macon County 4H Extension Program Coordinators in December. He told the Council that Charlotte Cook, SNAP-Ed Community Worker, had resigned in January. He has submitted the necessary paperwork to re-hire this position. Doug also said that he was waiting on Civil Service testing to be concluded for two clerical positions. Diane Dowd one of the Office Support in Macon County was retiring on April 30th. One of the two clerical positions in a replacement for her. The second clerical position is a replacement for Lindsey Burden in DeWitt County. Lindsey had taken the 4H EPC position in DeWitt County. Doug also told the Council that Courtney Stewart, one of the Unit’s market staff members resigned in December. He is still awaiting approval from campus HR to rehire this position. He does intend to replace her. Finally, Doug said that he was asking for permission to hire another 4H Extension Program Coordinator for DeWitt and Piatt Counties. He had not received approval as of yet for this new position.
Doug passed around Extension’s EEO and Affirmative Action plan for the Council members to read. He explained the EEO and Affirmative Action plan to the Council. He particularly made note of the requirement to provide special accommodations when asked for by a member of the public. Doug said that Extension was adding a specific statement to its EEO statement on all Extension documents. The new addition states that “Requests for accommodations should be made as soon as possible.” He stated that this statement was important because meeting requested accommodations might take a few days to arrange. Doug also reminded the Council that any complaints or concerns related to these items should be referred to him first. If he could not resolve the issue, then he would forward it to Extension’s leadership.
Programming Needs: Doug went over the Council’s role in assisting with the identification of programming needs in the Unit. He asked for ideas regarding issues or areas in which the staff might begin planning educational programs. Matthew Franklin stated that he had access to used computers from State Farm. He said that the computers would be donated and wiped of all software. He was proposing getting 15 of these computers for DeWitt County robotics clubs. Matt said that he could install the necessary software on them for using in 4H robotics. The Council thought that obtaining the computers was an excellent idea. Matt also said that he had access to used office furniture. Obtaining a cabinet to secure the computers in was advised by the Council.
Caitlin Mellendorf highlighted her Nutrition and Wellness program. She told the Council about the Food Handlers Certification program. This is an 8 hour program required by the state for all food handlers. She also gave the Council an opportunity to participate in a good hand washing simulation.
Doug Harlan told the Council that the Unit would be going through its 3-year Civil Rights Review on April 24th. He also stated that the Unit was one of two chosen to host the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign Campus Chancellor, Provost and Dean Kidwell from the College of ACES. Their visit will take place on May 14th.
Other program updates were placed in the Council members binders. Each Educator went over their written reports.
Doug Gucker reported on his recent farm to table supper event.
Candice Hart said the Macon County Gardening Insights Day had an increase of 17% in attendance. She also reported that a similar program at Allerton Park had 78 individuals attend.
Trinity Johnson reported on her field trip for Macon County students to the Museum of Science and Industry. It was a very successful day.
Jamie Boas reported on her programming with the Blue Ridge School district. She said that she had 34 students in the Let’s Get Growing program. She further stated that 28% of the K-5 student population in the district were involved in some 4H program.
Caitlin Mellendorf reported on the Cottage Food Law updates.
Staci Coussens report on her work with the Northeast Food Pantries – one in McLean County and one in Atwood, Piatt County. She is working with a grant that can provide these pantries with refrigerators, freezers and new shelving.
With no other business, the meeting adjourned at 7:30 pm. Next meeting is May 13th at 6:30 p.m.at the Piatt County Office.