Renovations also approved for Pulliam Hall
SIU Board of Trustees members voted to raise tuition and fees and renovate Pulliam Hall at Thursday’s meeting in Edwardsville.
Trustee Roger Herrin said he, trustee Don Lowery and student trustee Jesse Cler all voted against the tuition and fee raise, but they were outvoted.
The raise will be at about 4.8 percent.
SIU President Glenn Poshard said he thinks the raise was necessary.
“We have declining state revenues, we’ve got to manage an operations budget and pay our people,” he said. “We’re the lowest (tuition) already, so we’re still going to be the lowest after this is over.”
The board members also passed the vote to renovate Pulliam Hall. The renovation means both swimming pools in the building will be removed, despite many community members’ requests to keep the pools in place.
Poshard said the renovation will provide more office space for the architecture and art and design programs. The move is necessary because both programs are nationally recognized and they don’t have enough room to expand, he said.
“They have a growing student population, and their laboratories are already over there in the building,” he said.
The new chancellor for SIU Edwardsville was also ratified to begin her position July 1. Herrin said he thought the appointment went against the board’s bylaws because the position’s contract was signed April 25, but the finance committee and executive committee didn’t approve it until April 26.
“The bylaws said you don’t make an announcement of these people until they’re properly approved by the whole board,” he said.
Herrin said he voted in favor of the chancellor’s appointment but told the board he would not vote again in the future if the same mistake was made. He said the board did the same thing with SIUC’s new basketball coach. Herrin said the coach’s contract was effective April 1, but the meeting for the coach’s approval of appointment wasn’t until April 9.
“All I’m asking for is to play by the rules, and they don’t really seem to want to do that,” he said.
Poshard said the appointment was completed effectively.
“We always say when we make a public announcement, ‘pending board approval,’” he said. “The chancellor – no one – is hired until the board approves.”
He said if it had been put on the finance agenda, it would have prematurely announced the position, which would take away from the announcement at the university level. He said the board goes to the general counsel for legal advice and was given permission to follow through with the appointment.
Jeffrey McLellan, general counsel for SIU and the Board of Trustees, said everything was done in proper order, following the bylaws. He said Herrin must have been confused.
Other items approved on the agenda included a contract to replace the roof on Lawson Hall and the purchase of natural gas supply and delivery to campus.