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November 1, 2004
Employee Council hears more FLSA details
BY ERIC RANGUS
Employee Council will receive a funding boost from $4,000 to $5,000 starting next academic year, President Susie Lackey announced at its latest meeting, Wednesday, Oct. 20, in Goizueta Business School.
The surprise announcement was not on the agenda, and it was greeted with a round of applause from the council members who packed the meeting room on Goizueta’s fifth floor. Lackey said she had asked Bob Ethridge, vice president for Equal Opportunity Programs, for the increase, and he agreed.
Ron Gatlin, liaison from the President’s Commission on LGBT Concerns, asked the council to support a resolution it sent to several administrators and the University Senate asking the University to back its efforts to defeat Amendment 1. The council voted to support the resolution without dissent.
Other guest speakers included Emory Healthcare’s Reid Willingham, who discussed the Employee VIP (EVIP) program, which simplifies the process of making appointments with Emory physicians; Employee Benefits Manager Yvette Hart, who talked about open enrollment; and Michelle Smith, associate vice president for corporate relations, who plugged the EmoryGives program.
Smith gave special thanks to the council, who she said deserved a lot of credit for the current makeup of Emory’s charitable giving campaign. For many years, the United Way was the sole recipient of Emory’s charitable giving. Employee Council was one of the groups that lobbied to expand it; EmoryGives now encompasses six charitable partners and nearly 500 individual charities.
Theresa Milazzo, senior director of compensation and benefits, gave an update on the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and how it is affecting Emory employees. Because of the federal law, some exempt (salaried) employees will be reclassified as nonexempt (hourly employees). Milazzo said a consultant has been hired and is working with Human Resources (HR) to determine which positions must be reclassified. Milazzo said all affected employees have been sent an e-mail questionnaire (an example of it was shown to the council) asking for information to help make that determination. Supervisors will review that information for accuracy, then forward it to HR and the consultant for final determination. Some job titles, Milazzo said, could be renamed to better reflect the actual work being done by the employees and may result in some keeping exempt status. She said she hopes all these determinations will be complete by mid-December.
Council communications chair Melodye Moore said the Oct. 14 information fair at the Grady campus was a success. Around 120 people came out, and the event drew 20 vendors. She added that the council is working with HR to plan another information fair in tandem with Staff Fest in May. The council has lobbied to include an information aspect to the annual staff celebration for several years.
Special issues chair Louis Burton said he had e-mailed members of his subcommittee asking them for ideas to pursue. After gathering those ideas, members volunteered to follow through on each.
HR’s Katherine Hinson said Emory had won the “2004 Psychologically Healthy Workplace Award” from the Georgia Psychological Association. The award was created to recognize organizations and businesses that have demonstrated a commitment to the psychological health and well-being of their employees. Emory won for nonprofit organizations, and is now entered in the national competition.
The council’s final officer opening was filled when Karl Woodworth of the Woodruff Health Sciences Center Library was unanimously elected council historian. The next Employee Council meeting will be held at noon, Wednesday, Nov. 17, in the Rita Anne Rollins Room of the Rollins School of Public Health.
If you have a question or comment for Employee Council, e-mail Lackey at email@example.com.