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SCCC Board Wraps Up Fiscal Year, Looks to the Future

Joe Denoyer - June 27, 2017 3:56 pm


At its last meeting of the fiscal year, the Seward County Board of Trustees spent most of the long session Monday looking toward the future.  Scott Gales, president of Architect One, presented a multimedia look at the college’s two big expansion projects — the Colvin Family Allied Health Center, and the Sharp Champions Center. 

“We started developing these concepts in 2011, thinking about the college’s future,” Gales said. “In looking at the projects, we like to set up a schedule working backward from the date you’d like to have the project up and running. It’s possible you could have the new Allied Health center ready by fall semester 2019; the Champions Center could be completed by fall 2018, but both those dates depend on when the board decides to pull the trigger and start.”

Gales unveiled new, 3-D renditions of the projects. The board is slated to tackle the start-date decision at its next meeting, set for July 17. 

College president Dr. Ken Trzaska gave the board a preview of the strategies developed by the executive team. Priorities for the upcoming academic year will include continued focus on the college web page, safety policies, and student retention. A final list of strategic priorities will be presented at the July meeting. 

The executive team has also decided to establish an exploratory committee for athletics, to examine options for new sports at SCCC. 

“We will address the question, ‘Would a particular sport attract students we wouldn’t otherwise enroll?’” Trzaska said. 

The board approved the personnel report, which listed four new employees – assistant men’s basketball coach Luke Adams, cheer and dance coach Carisa Owen,  drama communications instructor Michele Van Hessen, and English instructor Joshua Paulus. Applications are currently being accepted for the Dean of Ag, Business, and Personal Services; Executive Director of Development; KSBDC Dodge City Business Consultant; Director of Adult Basic Education; instructors in  diesel technology, nursing, agriculture; Allied Health secretary, Wellness Center assistant, custodian supervisor, and carpenter. For more information about employment at SCCC, visit the college website at

Following negotiations with the Professional Employees Association, the board reviewed a memo of understanding that outlined potential changes for faculty members.  Along with the usual details about pay increases and benefits packages, the MOU detailed a new approach to the opportunities for advancement SCCC provides for instructors. 

“We envision a process in which instructors move from assistant to associate to a full professorship over time,” said Trzaska. “In the past year, we’ve seen that we need to make adjustments if we are to be an efficient, high-performing institution with the best people in the best places.” 

Vice-chair Marvin Chance said the 2 percent salary increase, paired with the college’s decision to absorb the bulk of health insurance premium increases, will likely work for the upcoming fiscal year. In the future, he noted, “we need to take a hard look at what’s feasible with taxpayer money.” 

In a later executive session, the board discussed the MOU further, and following that executive session, voted to approve the document for review by PEA. The board also opted to apply the 2 percent salary increase across the board to all SCCC employees, pending approval of the 2017-18 budget. 

The board instructed Vice President of Finance and Operations Dennis Sander to continue shaping the budget for FY 2017-18 with the requested increases to faculty compensation. 

The board reviewed a contract renewal with Great Western Dining (GWD) for cafeteria services. As presented, the agreement specifies terms for a 10-year period, with an GWD donation of $50,000 to be used for improvements to the cafeteria and the C-store/café upgrade to the Industrial Technology Campus former snack bar area. If the college opts to terminate the contract with GWD before the 10-year mark, SCCC would then be expected to reimburse the investment money on a prorated basis; for example, if the contract ended after five years, the college would repay GWD $25,000. 

The board approved the new contract unanimously, with board member Stacy Johnson absent. 

Local insurance agent Al Shank presented the board with the annual price quotes for various policies, from property insurance to worker’s compensation, general liability, and more. The coverage review resulted in a total premium increase of just more than $6,000, with a total cost of $280,911. 

“We’re using a combination approach with several carriers, and that’s been helpful, “ Shank said. “We also spent a lot of time looking for the best rates … as your agent, this package is what I would propose.” 

The board voted 5-0 to accept the insurance coverage as presented. 

Cosmetology instructors Sheila Scheib and Denice Paden gave a program review. Vice President of Academic Affairs, Dr. Todd Carter, congratulated the instructors on having the highest pass rates in the state. 

The board reviewed bids for a new fleet vehicle, which is an annual purchase. Bids were invited for a new 2017 Ford Fusion SE series, Chevy Malibu LS series or Chrysler 200 Limited. These models were chosen because of their price range and conduciveness to SCCC‘s fleet needs.

The administration recommended the purchase of a 2017 Ford Fusion from Foss Motor Company of Liberal for the low bid price of $19,945. The board voted to do so. 

Carter presented information to the board about the college’s performance report required by state law, to the Kansas Board of Regents. The performance agreement is designed to provide a level of accountability for all public colleges and universities in Kansas. The College is required to address certain indicators associated with the goals in Foresight 2020, the KBOR strategic plan. The KBOR academic affairs committee will review the results and a recommendation for funding will be presented to the Regents for action during a fall KBOR meeting. If four of the six indicators are above the baseline, full funding is recommended. SCCC met five of the six goals, and is therefore in good standing.

VP Sander presented a progress report on the capital projects currently underway, and the status of the capital lease the trustees had chosen as a funding source. Budgeted debt service for this lease is designated at $100,000 per year. This allocation of funds was previously designated as a part of the PEI bond debt service, which was completed in fiscal year 2016-17. Each capital item, as warranted by cost, will be subject to bidding procedures.

Sander had prepared paperwork authorizing the college to execute and deliver a site lease and lease purchase agreement with First National Bank of Liberal. However, the board opted to delay acceptance of the agreement in order to obtain competitive bids from other local banks. 

I don’t think 5.5 percent interest for a tax free loan is reasonable,” said Vice-chair Marvin Chance Jr., “and, given the size of this transaction, I feel we should put it out there for bids.” Chance noted that the bidding process should include one-year-, three-year, five-year, and 10-year terms, and take into account the 3 percent interest rate that is currently available. The board directed Sander to pursue this course of financing, and voted to approve the capital projects themselves as presented.

The board voted to reschedule the September meeting for Sept. 11, because of the Labor Day Holiday. The next meeting for the board will be July 17. 


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