REPORT NUMBER 193 OF THE PLANNING AND BUDGET COMMITTEE
Thursday, May 7, 2020
To the Academic Board,
University of Toronto
Your Committee reports that it met on Thursday, May 7, 2020, at 4:10 p.m. virtually, with the following members present:
Jan Mahrt-Smith, Chair; Mark Lautens, Vice-Chair; Cheryl Regehr, Vice-President and Provost; Scott Mabury, Vice-President, Operations and Real Estate Partnerships; Trevor Rodgers, Assistant Vice-President, Planning & Budget;
Stephanie Anagnostou; Shauna Brail; Nicole Breakey; Markus Bussmann; P.C. Choo; Ettore V. Damiano; Susan Froom; Gary D. Goldberg; Ira Jacobs; Anil Kishen; Ernest Lam; Maureen MacDonald; Joanne J. McNamara; Nicholas Rule; Melanie Woodin
Adalsteinn (Steini) I. D. Brown; David Dubins
Tracey Gameiro, Secretary
Elizabeth Cragg, Director, Office of the Vice-President University Operations; Jason MacIntyre, CAO & Bursar, Trinity College; Penelope Lockwood, Vice-Dean, Academic Planning, Faculty of Arts & Science; Daniella Mallinick, Director, Academic Programs, Planning and Quality Assurance, Office of the Vice-President and Provost; Mayo Moran, Provost & Vice-Chancellor, Trinity College; Andrea Russell, Director, Academic Affairs, Office of the Vice-President and Provost; Jonathan Steels, Assistant Provost, Trinity College; Isaac Straley, Chief Information Security Officer; Bo Wandschneider, Chief Information Officer
ITEM 3 IS RECOMMENDED TO THE ACADEMIC BOARD FOR APPROVAL. ITEM 7 WAS APPROVED. ALL OTHER ITEMS ARE REPORTED FOR INFORMATION.
Pursuant to section 33(i) of By-Law Number 2, item 11 was considered in camera.
- Chair’s Remarks
The Chair welcomed members to the final meeting of the 2020-2021 academic year and thanked them for their valuable service to the Committee.
- Assessors’ Reports
The Committee received a report from the Vice-President& Provost, Professor Cheryl Regehr and the Vice-President, Operations and Real Estate Partnerships, Professor Scott Mabury.
The Assessors’ provided an update as of May 7, 2020 on the impact of COVID-19. Highlights of the Assessors’ Reports included:
Professor Cheryl Regehr, Vice-President and Provost
Crisis Response Framework:
- When the University began to realize that COVID was a threat to operations, the Crisis Response Framework was activated. Over the previous weeks, the University had been working through the crisis response stage, but was now in the stage of crisis recovery, and planning for how to resume some University operations in the coming weeks
- Re-opening operations would be more complex than closing had been, and would be phased, with some services and functions resuming sooner than others.
- It would be quite a while before large gatherings could be held.
- Public health and safety would remain front of mind in making decisions and determining processes to reopen.
- Almost all summer courses had been moved online, and support continued to be provided to instructors through the Academic Continuity Framework.
- Summer enrolment was higher than other recent summers, but there remained uncertainty on how many registered students would actually continue with summer courses.
- Fall term enrolment was still an unknown, but enrolment modeling capacity was increasingly sophisticated, which would provide data to support decision making, and university-wide consistent decision making.
- The deadline for international and non-Ontario student acceptances had been moved back slightly in some division, but by and large acceptances from this group were strong at this stage.
- Considerations around international travel continued to be assessed and planned for.
- It was hoped that research restrictions would soon ease.
- The University had engaged both levels of government as well as funding agencies to address concerns about the continuity of research funding.
- The COVID-19 Emergency Bursary Fund remained open to graduate and undergraduate students from all three campuses
- Since mid-March the University had distributed emergency grants to over 2,800 undergraduate students, totalling over $3.1 million dollars, and 151 grants to graduate students.
Mental Health and Accessibility Services
- Student supports, including accessibility services, continued to operate remotely through virtual care forums.
- Work towards the launch of redesigned mental health services, as recommended by the Student Mental Health Taskforce, had continued throughout the pandemic.
- Each campus was providing up to date communications on how students could access services, with a dedicated webpage on services.
- Resources for developing and delivering accessible online courses were available to faculty on the CTSI website in coordination with the AODA office.
Professor Scott Mabury, Vice-President Operations and Real Estate Partnerships
- Professor Mabury commented that the Office of Planning and Budget was developing various scenarios with respect to budget. He noted that as tuition and enrolment information was received, the various scenarios could be implemented or adjusted as needed. Initiatives were being considered and implemented to support the transition of students indicating their intent to register and for actual enrolment for Fall, through to the November 1 count.
- The provincial government had signaled earlier that week, that the university sector was permitted to begin construction. Professor Mabury noted that it would be advantageous to complete some construction work, while the campus was devoid of a large number of staff, faculty and students.
To support an easier transition back to campus, a member urged the administration to communicate as soon as possible with those who would need to self-isolate when they returned to campus in the Fall. Provost Regehr confirmed that timely communications were top of mind, and that this would continue. Professor Mabury reported that additional residence space was also being considered, to support an increased need for student housing in the Fall due to COVID.
A member asked about the recent provincial government announcement to ‘pause’ the Performance Based Funding process (SMA’s) and how this would impact the budget. Provost Regehr responded that the impact was overall neutral. Trevor Rodgers concurred, and added that the announcement signaled that the SMA would not be signed at this time, however if the SMA was signed, the University anticipated receipt of all the expected funds.
- Capital Project: Report of the Project Planning Committee for Trinity College in the University of Toronto New Student Residence & Academic Building - The Lawson Centre for Sustainability
The Committee received a presentation from Professor Mayo Moran, Provost and Vice-Chancellor, Trinity College.
Highlights of the presentation included:
- Trinity was a separate financial entity with full responsibility, independent from the University, for all financial matters pertaining to the project.
- As per the agreement between the University of Toronto and Trinity College, Trinity had perpetual rights to the use of the land upon which the new building would be constructed.
- Extensive student and community consultation had taken place throughout all stages of planning.
A member asked about the new building dining space and its availability to community members. Provost Moran responded that the new building provided opportunities to reconsider food delivery options, and confirmed that some food services would be open to the community. She noted that future phases of the building would also include additional options, similar to ‘The Buttery’ that would welcome the wider community.
A member inquired about bike storage. Provost Moran responded that the building would include bike storage for those in residence.
A member congratulated the Trinity community on the exciting project and asked about the impact of construction on pedestrian traffic and on sports activity. It was commented that there was a loss of a playing field for the sports complex, which meant a loss of space and revenue. The member asked about the building design, and if consideration could be made regarding the loading dock entrance. Provost Moran responded that there had been discussion and consultation regarding the loading dock entrance, and possible shared space options, however, the design was fairly far advanced, and as such changes to the design were not anticipated.
On motion duly moved, seconded and carried
YOUR COMMITTEE RECOMMENDED
THAT the Report of the Project Planning Committee for Trinity College in the University of Toronto New Student Residence & Academic Building - The Lawson Centre for Sustainability, dated April 16, 2020, be approved in principle; and,
THAT the project totaling 9,229 net assignable square metres (nasm) and 14,068 gross square metres (gsm), be approved in principle, to be funded by Trinity College by means of a combination of institutional investments, fundraising, and external loans.
- Faculty of Arts & Science’s Academic Plan 2020-2025: Leveraging Our Strengths
The Planning and Budget Committee received the Faculty of Arts & Science’s Academic Plan 2020-2025: Leveraging Our Strengths, for information.
Professor Melanie Woodin, Dean of the Faculty gave a brief presentation speaking to the six priorities identified in the plan:
- Pushing the Boundaries of Research Excellence
- Enhancing Academic Programming and the Student Experience
- Indigenous Research, Teaching and Learning
- Equity, Diversity and Inclusion
- Building Partnerships with Local and Global Communities
- Faculty Operations
There were no questions or comments from members.
OPEN CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion duly moved, seconded, and carried
YOUR COMMITTEE APPROVED THAT
the consent agenda be adopted.
- Annual Report: Executive Committee of the Capital Project and Space Allocation Committee (CaPS)
The Annual Report of the CaPS Executive Committee was provided to the Committee for information.
- Annual Report: Design Review Committee 2019
The Committee received the 2019 Annual Report of the Design Review Committee for information.
- Report of the Previous Meeting: Report Number 192 – April 1, 2020
Report Number 192 of April 1, 2020, was approved.
- Business Arising from the Report of the Previous Meeting
There was no business arising from the report of the previous meeting.
- Date of the Next Meeting – Thursday, September 27, 2020, 3:10 – 5:10 p.m.
The Chair reminded members that the next meeting would be held on Thursday, September 27, 2020, and pointed out the new 3:10 p.m. start time for meetings.
- Other Business
There were no items of other business.
The Chair thanked members, the assessors, and the secretary for their significant contributions over the past year.
THE COMMITTEE MOVED IN CAMERA.
- Capital Project: Trinity College in the University of Toronto, New Student Resident & Academic Building – The Lawson Centre for Sustainability –Total Project Cost and Sources of Funding
On motion duly moved, seconded, and carried
YOUR COMMITTEE RECOMMENDS
THAT the Vice-President, Operations and Real Estate Partnerships’ recommendation regarding the Total Project Cost and Sources of Funding for the Trinity College in the University of Toronto, New Student Resident & Academic Building – The Lawson Centre for Sustainability, as outlined in the memorandum dated April 30, 2020, be approved.
- Annual Report: Information Security and the Protection of Digital Assets
Members received the first Annual Report on Information Security and the Protection of Digital Assets for information.
The Committee returned to Open Session.
The Chair thanked members for their attendance and participation.
The meeting adjourned at 5:56 p.m
May 11, 2020