Minutes of the

105th Quarterly Meeting

of the

Upper Mississippi River Basin Association

 

February 20, 2008

St. Louis, Missouri

 

 

The meeting was called to order at 9:30 a.m. by UMRBA Chair Mike Wells.  The following were present:

 

UMRBA Representatives and Alternates:

 

Gary Clark

Illinois (DNR)

Rick Mollahan

Illinois (DNR)

Martin Konrad

Iowa (DNR)

Laurie Martinson

Minnesota (DNR)

Rebecca Wooden

Minnesota (DNR)

Mike Wells

Missouri (DNR)

Dru Buntin

Missouri (DNR)

Gretchen Benjamin

Wisconsin (DNR)

 

Federal Liaisons:

 

Terry Smith

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (MVD)

Bill Franz

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (Region 5)

Linda Leake

U.S. Geological Survey (UMESC)

Rick Nelson

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (RIFO)

Mike Sullivan

USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

 

Others in attendance:

 

Cathy Cutler

Iowa DOT

Janet Sternburg

Missouri DOC

Rich Worthington

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (HQ)

Chuck Spitzack

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (MVR)

Hank DeHaan

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (MVR)

Marvin Hubbell

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (MVR)

Brian Markert

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (MVS)

Brian Johnson

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (MVS)

Rebecca Soileau

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (MVP)

Don Powell

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (MVP)

Jeff DeZellar

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (MVP)

Don Hultman

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (UMR Refuge)

Jon Duyvejonck

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (RIFO)

Scott Yess

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/UMRCC

Barry Johnson

U.S. Geological Survey (UMESC)

Mike Slifer

U.S. Geological Survey (MO Water Science Center)

Bob Goodwin

Maritime Administration

Mark Carr

AEP River Operations

Elisa Royce

American Land Conservancy

Dan McGuiness

Audubon

Gary Loss

CDM

Tim Feather

CDM

Mark Tompkins

CH2M Hill

Bently Green

CH2M Hill

Heather Schoonover

Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy

Ron Kroese

McKnight Foundation

Kathleen Logan Smith

Missouri Coalition for the Environment

Kim Knowles

Missouri Coalition for the Environment

Brad Walker

Prairie Rivers Network

Christine Favilla

Sierra Club Illinois Chapter

Owen Dutt

Shannon and Wilson

Russell Schuab

Shannon and Wilson

Stephen Black

Southwestern Illinois RC&D

Catherine McCalvin

The Nature Conservancy

Todd Strole

The Nature Conservancy

Paul Rohde

Waterways Council, Inc.

Holly Stoerker

Upper Mississippi River Basin Association

Dave Hokanson

Upper Mississippi River Basin Association

Barb Naramore

Upper Mississippi River Basin Association

 

 

Meeting Minutes

 

Gretchen Benjamin moved and Gary Clark seconded a motion to approve the minutes of the November 13, 2007 meeting as drafted.  The motion was approved unanimously.

 

Executive Director’s Report

 

Holly Stoerker noted that all UMRBA Board members, alternates, and staff must sign conflict of interest disclosure statements.  She urged those Board members present to complete the forms and turn them in at the end of the meting.  Forms will also be sent to those not present at the meeting.

 

Stoerker highlighted the following items from her written report included in the agenda packet.

§   Strategic planning for the EMP Long Term Resource Monitoring Program is nearing its conclusion and a draft plan should be available for review in May.

§   The Explanatory Statement accompanying the FY 08 appropriations act included Congressional language limiting EMP funding to projects already underway.  Stoerker thanked Corps staff for their efforts to secure a favorable interpretation of this language.  She also commented that it will be important to resist having such language included in the FY 09 appropriations committee report.  Marvin Hubbell commented that the Corps has been able to work with the restriction this year, but it will be problematic in the future.  The greatest impact has been felt by the St. Louis District, followed by the Rock Island and St. Paul Districts, respectively.

§   The UMR Spills Coordination Group is planning a responder training session in May and notification drill to exercise the UMR Spill Response Plan in March. 

§   In December, UMRBA submitted comments on the National Research Council Report on the Mississippi River and the Clean Water Act.

§   In January, UMRBA transmitted comments on the draft Hypoxia Action Plan.

§   Plans are underway for two workshops focusing on the connections between the Clean Water Act and ecosystem restoration on the Upper Mississippi River.  Invitations for the workshops, to be held April 16-17 and June 11-12, were recently sent to 100 people.  Attendance is expected to be 50-60.

§   The Corps has finalized its UMR Comprehensive Plan report.  While the conclusion still remains that none of the alternatives have a positive benefit-cost ratio, the number and scope of the recommendations have increased. 

§   The USGS Cooperators’ Roundtable, which UMRBA co-hosted last November with ICWP, was very successful.  Copies of the presentations and a summary of the recommendations are posted on both the ICWP and UMRBA websites.

§   ICWP is hoping to sponsor another series of regional workshops focusing on state water planning.  Stoerker urged UMRBA to consider co-hosting one of these meetings in this region.

§   The UMRBA Board and Water Quality Executive Committee will be making visits in Washington during the first week of March.  Meetings with members of Congress and the Administration will focus on two primary funding needs: 1) EMP and NESP and 2) UMRBA’s water quality program.  UMRBA’s Congressional visits will be done in lieu of submitting written testimony this year. 

 

Chairman’s Report

 

Mike Wells announced that Holly Stoerker will be retiring as UMRBA Executive Director, effective June 30, 2008.  Barb Naramore has been selected to fill the position following Stoerker’s departure.  In early March, Naramore will begin serving fulltime in her current position, to facilitate the transition.

 

Wells also announced that, in March, UMRBA will begin the process of seeking to fill the Ecosystem & Navigation Program Director position, which Naramore currently occupies.  He said the hope is to have new staff on board by early June.

 

Wells announced that Stoerker’s retirement party is to be held in conjunction with the August 2008 quarterly meeting, rather than the May 2008 meeting, as previously indicated.

 

Dan McGuiness Recognition

 

Holly Stoerker presented Dan McGuiness with a UMRBA Certificate of Appreciation in recognition of his many contributions and years of service to the people and places of the Upper Mississippi River Basin.  McGuiness will be retiring from Audubon in May 2008.

 

Interbasin Diversions

 

The Interbasin Diversion Charter, signed by the Governors in 1989, requires that, at UMRBA Annual Meetings, each State report on out-of-basin diversion requests made during the previous year that exceeded an average of 5 million gallons per day during any 30 day period.  The following reports were offered in accordance with the Charter:

 

Illinois — Gary Clark reported there were no diversion requests in Illinois.

 

Iowa — Martin Konrad reported that there were no diversion requests in Iowa.

 

Minnesota — Laurie Martinson reported there were no diversion requests in Minnesota

 

Wisconsin — Gretchen Benjamin reported there were no diversion requests in Wisconsin

 

Missouri — Mike Wells reported there were no diversion requests in Missouri.  However, he asked Dru Buntin to comment on the Garrison Diversion.  Buntin explained that a study of the Red River of the North was authorized by Congress in the 2000 Dakota Water Resources Act.  It is nearing conclusion and BLM’s preferred alternative includes a diversion.  Missouri is working with Minnesota, Canada, and the National Wildlife Federation to oppose the project.  Governors Blunt and Pawlenty sent a letter expressing their concerns to the Interior Secretary.

 

Navigation and Ecosystem Sustainability Program (NESP)

 

Economic Reevaluation — Chuck Spitzack described the results of the Economic Reevaluation requested by the Assistant Secretary of the Army (CW).  The reevaluation showed that the risks of not implementing the navigation improvements originally recommended following the Navigation Study is greater than the risk of implementing them.  Therefore, the Interim Report recommends proceeding with the first increment plan and also developing new multimodal tools.  Spitzack also summarized the views of the External Peer Review (EPR) panel, which concluded that the Reevaluation is incomplete because it lacks a multimodal basis, among other things.  Spitzack said the Corps agrees with the EPR panel’s recommendations concerning the need for improved models and sensitivity analysis, but does not believe it is appropriate to delay the first increment plan.  Spitzack indicated that the public review period ends soon and the report is expected to be finalized by March 31, 2008.

 

FY 08 and FY 09 Work Plans — Spitzack distributed copies of the FY 08 NESP work plan, detailing how $8.856 million in funding was distributed among project activities.  He also presented the “most efficient” work plan for FY 09.  That plan is based on $50 million in funding, split equally between navigation and ecosystem work activities.  Spitzack explained that a 2-3 year ramp-up will be required, moving from $50 million in FY09 to $200 million by FY 11.  After that time, a steady level of funding at approximately $265 million/year will be required.  Spitzack emphasized the need for construction contracts that allow and reward contractor driven innovation and efficiencies.

  

Implementation Guidance — Rich Worthington said that there have been a number of meetings with ASA (CW) staff regarding the WRDA implementation guidance for NESP, but he does not yet have a draft to share with partners for review.  However, he summarized the major provisions in the draft guidance and said they parallel the authorization closely.  In particular, Worthington described the provisions related to small scale navigation improvements, new locks, mitigation, cost-sharing and project approval of ecosystem restoration projects, monitoring and adaptive management, reports to Congress, the Advisory Panel, and comparable progress.

 

Worthington explained that there is some question within ASA (CW) and OMB about why guidance for NESP is needed, if the program is not being funded by the Administration.  The staff response has been that the Corps needs to have guidance on how to spend the appropriated funds, if Congress is going to fund the program despite the Administration’s lack of support.

 

Martin Konrad asked about the requirement for External Peer Review.  Worthington explained that EPR was part of the Corps reform debate.  What was ultimately authorized in WRDA 07 is close to what the Corps was already doing.  It will not likely apply to most NESP ecosystem restoration projects. 

 

Rick Nelson asked why fish passage and dam point control projects need approval at the Chief of Engineer’s level.  Worthington explained that they are large projects that are unprecedented on the UMR and may affect operations.

 

Implementation Report to Congress — Spitzack explained that NESP implementation reports to Congress are required every 4 years.  The first report is due in June 2009.  Spitzack said these reports offer an opportunity to develop state-of-the-art reports on adaptive management, which would go beyond what is required in the authorization.  He reviewed the Statement of Work for the Report to Congress included in the UMRBA meeting packet. 

 

Gretchen Benjamin questioned the need for two reports in 2009 — a Report to Congress in June and then an “enhanced” report in December.  Spitzack explained that the Congressionally-set June deadline may not allow sufficient time to develop the adaptive management baseline for the future.  Holly Stoerker commented that the adaptive planning reports should be decoupled from the required Reports to Congress.  She suggested that the Reports to Congress focus on accomplishments and future plans under NESP, rather than on state-of-the-art adaptive management.

 

UMRBA Vision for Integrating NESP and EMP — Holly Stoerker reported that UMRBA had recently received letters from Deputy Director of Civil Works Steve Stockton and Assistant Secretary of the Army John Paul Woodley, in response to the vision statement UMRBA transmitted to them regarding EMP-NESP integration.  Stoerker characterized the letters as cordial, but noncommittal.  The Administration is not in a position to commit to a transition from EMP to NESP, because it would involve a commitment to budget for NESP, a commitment the Administration has not made.

 

Chuck Spitzack said he felt UMRBA’s vision statement was very helpful because it laid out a transition strategy for ecosystem restoration projects.  However, he questioned the implications for LTRMP, noting that it is not clear if the NESP authorizing language would allow LTRMP to be funded in part under NESP, if it was not fully funded under EMP.  Worthington noted that the NESP implementation guidance will not address this issue and that it would be preferable for the partners in the region to develop a consensus on how this might work.  Stoerker suggested that further discussion of what, if any, changes may be needed in the NESP authority await the recommendations from the LTRMP Strategic Planning group.  Laurie Martinson commented that, if Congressional action is needed, these issues could be addressed in appropriations language.

 

Institutional Arrangements — Chuck Spitzack presented a variety of potential alternative configurations for a River Council, which he described as reflecting feedback from MVD on the 2005 Operational Model and additional considerations related to the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) and the WRDA-authorized NESP Advisory Panel.

 

Dru Buntin noted that partners were previously told that the River Council would meet the needs of the Advisory Panel.  He questioned why this judgment has changed and why the Corps is seeking to avoid FACA.  Spitzack explained that the relationship between the Advisory Panel and River Council is complicated by FACA, which is administratively burdensome.  Buntin commented that the applicability of FACA may be appropriate given the large amount of funding involved in NESP.

 

Spitzack explained that the draft concept paper he distributed last week has since been modified to reflect a FACA-exempt River Advisory Panel (RAP) to consult and guide the program and a FACA-compliant River Council (RC) to collaborate, coordinate, and integrate with other programs.  The RAP members may be a subset of the RC.

 

Rebecca Wooden said that the questions and concerns regarding institutional arrangement that UMRBA raised in its January 2006 letter of comment had not yet been addressed.  She emphasized that the States still have serious concerns about the River Council concept. 

 

Spitzack outlined a schedule for further consideration and development of the institutional arrangements concepts, including further discussion at the upcoming NECC-ECC meeting, with a proposal to the District Commanders by May or June, and the first meeting of these new groups in November 2008.

 

Gretchen Benjamin commented that the institutional arrangements process is bewildering.  The concepts seem to change continually, and there is a lack of communication.  Yet she said she believes there is urgency to getting organizational changes made.

 

Rebecca Wooden said that NECC-ECC is not the appropriate forum to seek policy-level input on institutional arrangements.  Laurie Martinson stressed the importance of giving the UMRBA Board an opportunity to more fully discuss and provide input.  All Board members agreed.  Buntin expressed frustration that the material provided in advance of the meeting reflected substantial changes from where the institutional arrangement concepts had previously been left and then Spitzack presented yet another alternative today.

 

Spitzack indicated he would develop a timeline for review and input and provide it to UMRBA staff following the meeting.

 

Water Quality Update

 

Designated Uses Project — Dave Hokanson described the work of the UMRBA Water Quality Task Force related to designated uses on the river.  Currently the Task Force is focusing on aquatic life use and the potential value of establishing subcategories.  Challenges include answering questions such as:

§   What is the right “conceptual framework” or “grid” to apply in more habitat-informed implementation of the Clean Water Act?

§   What are the important, map-able, measurable distinctions?

§   How can information and approaches from other river programs like LTRMP and EMAP be integrated?

§   What is the relationship between data and decisions?

§   Can main channel criteria protect uses in other areas?

 

Hokanson stressed that there is a lot of work ahead on this project.  Some of the immediate next steps and opportunities include meetings of the UMRCC-Water Quality Tech Section (March 18), Water Quality Task Force and Executive Committee (June 10-11), and the Clean Water Act-Ecosystem Restoration Workshops (April 16-17 and June 11-12).

 

Outreach to EPA— Hokanson reported that he and the Water Quality Task Force Chair Jim Baumann met with EPA Region 5 staff in November.  Similarly, Water Quality Executive Committee (WQEC) Chair Chuck Corell and Hokanson met with the EPA Region 7 Administrator in January.  In March, members of UMRBA staff and WQEC will meet with Water Office Directors at EPA headquarters.  The purpose of these visits is to generate increased support for UMRBA’s interstate coordination efforts.  One possibility is an Interagency Personnel Agreement between EPA and UMRBA.

 

Mississippi River Water Quality Collaborative

 

Kim Knowles and Kathleen Logan Smith of the Missouri Coalition for the Environment described the Mississippi River Water Quality Collaborative, which is composed of 13 state-based groups from 9 of the 10 river states, as well as regional and national groups.  It includes biologists, environmental engineers, attorneys, and activists.  There are five work groups, each focusing on a different water quality issue: water quality standards, farm policy, 402 discharge permits, 404 wetland permits, anti-degradation, and nutrients.

 

For each issue area Knowles and Logan-Smith described the Collaborative’s goals and actions.  The Collaborative participates in rule development, comments on permits and permit appeals, presents legal challenges, conducts citizen outreach, and hosts in-the-field workshops.

 

Logan Smith thanked UMRBA for the opportunity to start building a working relationship with regard to water quality issues in the basin.

 

NESP-Related Collaboration

 

Holly Stoerker said that UMRBA is enhancing its collaborative efforts on NESP-related issues, as well as water quality issues.  In particular, an ad-hoc group including UMRBA, Waterways Council Inc., the River Resource Alliance, The Nature Conservancy, and Audubon, have been working together on a regular basis to promote funding for NESP in FY 09.  She expressed appreciation to these partners for their hard work and willingness to work together.

 

Paul Rohde emphasized that it will be very difficult to secure funding this year.  Catherine McCalvin reported that TNC Board members made Congressional visits last week in support of NESP.  Although there are many members who support NESP, the feedback the TNC received was disappointing.  In particular, there will likely be a Continuing Resolution until a new Administration is in office.

 

FY 2009 Federal Budget

 

Corps of Engineers — Terry Smith reported that the FY 09 proposed budget for the Corps is $4.741 billion, down from FY 08 by $130 million.  The budget emphasizes the Corps’ 3 main mission areas (i.e., navigation, flood damage reduction, and aquatic ecosystem restoration), projects with high return on investment, a user fee for inland waterway barges, and “actions for change.” 

 

Smith outlined both the total Corps and MVD budgets with respect to General Investigations (GI), Construction General (CG), and Operation and Maintenance (O&M).  He noted that the EMP is one of six national priority construction projects.  He also explained that the O&M budget is being presented according to 54 USGS subwatershed units. 

 

Barb Naramore asked if the new inland waterway user fee proposal would disadvantage certain regions because it is based on lockages and not all waterway segments have locks.  Paul Rohde commented that the proposal is not being well-received by the industry, in part because it is viewed as inequitable.  He said that waterway users are eager to see the details of the proposal, which has not yet been released.

 

Environmental Protection Agency — Bill Franz reported that activities associated with EPA’s “Clean and Safe Water” goal will comprise approximately 36 percent of EPA’s FY 09 proposed budget.  Funding for Section 106 is proposed to increase by $3 million, Section 319 funding is slated to decrease by $16 million, and the Targeted Watershed Program is zeroed out.  Franz commented that Congress typically reinstates the watershed funding.  Cuts are also proposed in FY 09 for the Clean Water and Safe Drinking Water state revolving funds.

 

Franz said four specific regional programs are funded under the “Geographic Programs” account.  In addition, the “other” category includes funds for additional regional programs including Puget Sound and San Francisco Bay.

 

In response to a question about Section 104 funding, Franz explained that, although it has been zeroed out in the FY 09 budget, the authority still exists.

 

Fish and Wildlife Service — Rick Nelson said that the overall Fish and Wildlife Service budget increased by 6 percent in FY 08, but is proposed to decrease by 2 percent in FY 09.  The Ecological Services budget is slated for an $8 million cut.

 

With regard to specific work on the UMR, Nelson said the Ecological Services program is estimated at about $715,000 in FY 08.  This includes funding from the Department of the Interior budget, as well as funding transfers from other agencies.

 

Don Hultman said the budget for Refuges is up $39 million nationally in FY 08.  There are eleven refuges on or near the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers, with total funding of about $10 million.  There are currently 50 refuge vacancies in Region 3, of which 10 will be filled. 

 

Hultman described the Fisheries program as having relatively stable funding.  In total, the 3 UMR fisheries resource offices are funded at about $1.3 million in FY 08.  Hultman also noted that the FWS grant programs to UMR states have been increasing about 1-3 percent per year.  However, the FY 08 totals have not yet been updated.

 

U.S. Geological Survey — Linda Leake presented an overview comparison of the FY 08 and FY 09 budgets for USGS, noting that the $968 million proposal for FY 09 is a decrease of $38 million from FY 08.  Some program accounts will be decreased, while others increase.  Functions related to climate change will be streamlined by consolidating them under one budget line item.  Leake also noted that the budget includes $8.2 million for a new “Water for America” initiative, to include the first water census in many years.

 

Leake also briefly reviewed the activities underway in each of the five states’ USGS Water Science Centers and UMESC. 

 

Leake concluded by explaining that USGS has just received approval for executive realignment into regional offices that will integrate across USGS disciplines.  UMR states will be assigned to one of 3 regions: North Central, South Central, or Midwest.  UMESC will be in the Midwest region, because it is located in Wisconsin.  However, Leake commented that since UMESC’s work spans all 3 regions, it will be helpful to have 3 potential champions. 

 

U.S. Department of Agriculture — Mike Sullivan explained that the trend in the USDA budget is to put less emphasis on discretionary programs and more on mandatory programs.   Discretionary spending is down $135 million, with funding being redirected from RC&D, Healthy Forests, watershed surveys and planning, and watershed and flood prevention operations to higher priority programs.  Sullivan said the Conservation Operations budget is down over $39 million.  This includes technical assistance to producers.

 

Mandatory program funding, including what the Administration believes will be needed for new Farm Bill programs, totals $2.6 billion.  The Administration’s budget includes $1.05 billion for EQIP, $360 million for the Conservation Security Program, $181 million for WRP, and $84 for CRP technical assistance.

 

Sullivan also presented a graph illustrating the NRCS staffing trend over the past 10 years, showing that Farm Bill programs are taking increasing time and displacing the effort previously devoted to conservation operations and other discretionary programs.

 

Middle Mississippi River Partnership

 

Steve Black of the Southwestern Illinois RC&D gave a presentation describing the Middle Mississippi River Partnership (MMRP).  He explained that the Middle Mississippi is the 200 miles of river between the confluence with the Missouri River and the confluence with the Ohio River.  The MMRP, which was formed in 2004 and supported by the McKnight Foundation, includes federal agencies, state agencies, and NGOs.  In 2005, MMRP developed a Coordination Plan, which identified important resources and values, defined basin level goals and objectives, collected GIS data for future decision-making, and identified next steps.

 

The MMRP emphasizes coordination of projects on the ground.  Black gave the example of Rockwood Island, a side channel complex in Randolph County, Illinois.  The American Land Conservancy acquired the property, constructed an office, and donated it to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.  Ducks Unlimited is working with the Service on the restoration plan.

 

MMRP will be receiving collaborative planning funds from the Corps of Engineers to move its work forward by doing a study.  The focus of the study, which is one of only five such studies in the country, is 1) setting regional goals, objectives, and strategies, 2) developing a hydro geomorphic model, and 3) conducting assessments of five river reaches.

 

Administrative Issues

 

Personnel Manual — Martin Konrad explained that there are two amendments to the UMRBA Personnel Manual that the Board discussed yesterday.  The first involves changes to the way in which paid leave is awarded to project employees.  The second would adjust the salary ranges for the Executive Director and Program Director positions.  Konrad moved to amend the UMRBA Manual of Personnel Practices as follows:

 

§   In Chapter V, Part A, Section 1, delete existing language and insert the following:

 

“Following the first three months of employment, project employees who are employed for 80 hours/pay period shall be granted 104 hours of paid leave for use during their subsequent year of employment.  Project employees employed for less than 80 hours/pay period shall have paid leave prorated in accordance with the schedule governing Minnesota state employees (Middle Management Association.)

Subsequent paid leave awards are made on the anniversary date of the initial award.  The maximum amount for the second award is 104 hours.  The maximum amount for the third and subsequent awards is 130 hours.

The total amount of paid leave for which an employee is eligible shall become available at the award date.  Unliquidated leave shall lapse one year from its award date.

Project employees’ leave may be used for the same purposes as sick leave or annual leave is used by permanent employees.  Project employees should seek advance approval from their supervisor for use of leave, other than for unanticipated illness.”

 

§   In Chapter II, Part A, increase the bottom and top figure of the salary ranges for the Executive Director, Water Quality Program Director, and Ecosystem & Navigation Program Director by 8 percent.

 

Gretchen Benjamin seconded the motion, which was then passed unanimously.

 

Naramore Employment Status — Martin Konrad moved and Gary Clark seconded a motion to change Barb Naramore’s employment status from part-time to full-time, effective March 3, 2008 or as soon thereafter as possible.  The motion passed unanimously.

 

Stoerker Annual Leave — Mike Wells explained that when a UMRBA employee leaves, the payment in cash for earned but unused annual leave is limited by the UMRBA Personnel Manual to pay for 30 days (240 hours).  Wells said the Board would like to make an exception to that policy for Holly Stoerker.  Gretchen Benjamin moved and Rebecca Wooden seconded a motion authorizing payment to Holly Stoerker for all her earned but unused annual leave, upon her retirement.  The motion passed unanimously.

 

FY 2008 Budget Revisions — Mike Wells noted that a number of the actions that the Board just took have budget implications, particularly for payroll-related expenses.  He explained that yesterday the Board discussed a variety of amendments to the FY 2008 UMRBA budget, which total an increase of $36,530, including the following:

§   + $25,570 in Salaries

§   + $6,400 in Benefits

§   + $2,640 in Social Security Payroll Expenses

§   + $620 in Medicare Payroll Expenses

§   + $1000 in Legal and Tax Services (for review of retirement plan)

§   + $300 in Other Services (for IT support related to staff transitions)

 

Gary Clark moved and Gretchen Benjamin seconded a motion to amend UMRBA’s FY 2008 budget as described above.  The motion passed unanimously.

 

Election of Officers

 

Gretchen Benjamin nominated Martin Konrad for the position of UMRBA Chair.  Konrad was elected by acclimation.

 

Gretchen Benjamin nominated Gary Clark for the position of UMRBA Vice Chair.  Clark was elected by acclimation.

 

Future Meeting Schedule

 

The following dates and locations were identified for future meetings:

         May 20-22, 2008                St. Paul, Minnesota

         August 5-7, 2008                La Crosse, Wisconsin

         November 18-20, 2008       Quad Cities, Illinois-Iowa

 

The meeting was adjourned at 3:07 p.m.