Board Takes Action on Facility Upgrades

Arkansas Tech University will move forward with improvements to four of its buildings following action by the institution’s Board of Trustees on Thursday. The board approved:

*an expansion of the W.O. Young Building that will allow for more office space in the Arkansas Tech Purchasing Department (photographed, top right);

*renovations to Bryan Hall that will prepare the east wing for use by Arkansas Tech Student Disability Services and the Arkansas Tech Office of Academic Affairs for student support services (photographed, second right);

*renovations to lecture halls 2-172 and 3-152 at McEver Hall (photographed, third right);

*and funding to establish plans for a potential renovation of the Old Art Building so that it can be converted to administrative office space (photographed, bottom right).

Cost for the expansion of the W.O. Young Building is estimated at $254,938. The university will spend $179,058 to renovate Bryan Hall’s east wing, and cost for the McEver Hall renovations will be $25,000.

The board set aside $42,875 to cover architect fees associated with the planning phase of the potential Old Art Building renovation.

The sum total of $501,871 for the four projects will be transferred from the unappropriated educational and general fund balance.

In other business on Thursday, the Arkansas Tech Board of Trustees approved:

*a new organizational document for the Arkansas Tech University Alumni Association Board of Directors;

*a memorandum of understanding that calls for the Russellville School District to transfer fiscal and administrative oversight of the Area Career and Technical Center (ACTC) located at Russellville High School to Arkansas Tech University-Ozark Campus on July 1, 2011;

*an expenditure of $275,605 to install lights on the intramural field adjacent to Arkansas Highways 7 and 124;

*renewal of health and dental insurance for Arkansas Tech employees through Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield for 2011 with a health insurance increase of 7.7 percent and no increase in dental insurance;

*a request to begin the process of identifying a firm to serve as health insurance advisor to the university as it interprets and implements the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act enacted on March 23, 2010;

*an update to the Arkansas Tech affirmative action policy that adds genetic information as a protected category for purposes of discrimination in employment;

*a conflict of interest policy for Arkansas Tech faculty, staff and members of the Board of Trustees;

*a letter of notification that will be forwarded to the Arkansas Department of Higher Education that defines Arkansas Tech’s distance learning initiative as a separate organizational component;

*and a program proposal that will be forwarded to the Arkansas Department of Higher Education outlining a new Associate of Applied Science degree in occupational therapy assistant for Arkansas Tech-Ozark Campus.