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VPBA Newsletter - May 2006

Business Horizons

A monthly publication of Business Affairs

The University of
Texas at
San Antonio

May 2006

In All We Do,
We Do With


Every Person,
Every Day,
Every Job

Kerry's Korner......
As another quarter quickly approaches, please take a minute to convey appreciation to your colleagues for their valuable assistance and contributions.  This is Police Appreciation Week – perhaps a note to one of our officers or Police Department civilian staff would be in order.  Our 3rd recipient of the Celebrating Excellence Award will be recognized in June; please consider who you might formally nominate.

Horizons is long this month with some most important news, so please read this edition thoroughly. Those of you who are HMO Blue participants need to pay particular attention to the relevant article below.  Also, we have a very interesting spotlight on Debbie Hansen, and we must again say congratulations to our Inventory Department on their Team Spirit Award recognition!  We are proud of each of you.

And finally, our annual Business Affairs Forum is on Thursday the 25th starting at 9:30 a.m. in the Main Building ground floor auditorium.  Guest speakers; more giveaways than last year; the new Business Affairs ‘Welcome!’ video; an entertaining and fun series of pictures beginning at 9 a.m.; and perhaps a couple of other surprises await you – so please come and help fill the auditorium.  Need transportation? Read on!

Remember: A person’s greatest emotional need is to feel appreciated.  Fill a need today. Kerry   

Calendar Events

May 11-13

Mother's Day
May 14

VPBA Forum
May 25
9:30 - 11:00 a.m.

Memorial Day Holiday
May 29

Did you know?

Faculty, staff and students calling the UTSA Police Department regarding an emergency situation should dial 4911 when using a campus phone or 458-4911 from a non campus phone or cell phone. If calling regarding a non-emergency, students should dial 4242 when using a campus phone or 458-4242 from a non-campus phone or cell phone. 


Spotlight on...Debbie Hansen

Debbie Hansen joined the Disbursements Office on January 28, 2002.   “I like
the work that I do and consider myself fortunate to be here at UTSA. Nowhere else have I found such a pervasive spirit of friendliness, cooperation and professionalism.”

Born and raised in San Marcos, Texas, she attended Texas State University, then known as Southwest Texas State. Debbie spent several years in Houston with her husband, Charlie, before moving to San Antonio. They have been married since 1985. In 1993, they moved to Boerne, where they currently reside along with Molly, their cat.

Debbie was raised in a family that enjoyed music, singing, laughter, church, family get-togethers and each other. She says, “God has blessed my life in many ways.” Debbie’s mother had a “green thumb” and Debbie believes that her mother passed that along to her. Debbie has been blessed from both sides of her family; her Dad’s parents were Central Texas farmers. “Either way,” she says of working in her garden, “it is in my blood.”

Taking daily walks around campus for exercise and  recreation, Debbie has come to know and recognize many people.  If you ask Debbie’s co-workers about her, there's a common response that reflects on her generosity and kindness. “Debbie is the most thoughtful person we have in this office. She is also the first one willing to help if at all possible.” Debbie arrived with her "positive attitude" and in the past 4 years, she has helped in building Disbursements' reputation of being customer-oriented and giving everyone she meets her full attention. Thank you, Debbie, for your commitment to excellence in Business Affairs and the university.

Police Appreciation Week

National Police Week is May 14 - 19 honoring those law enforcement officers who, through their courageous deeds, have made the ultimate sacrifice in service to their community or have become disabled in the performance of duty, and to voice our appreciation for all those who currently serve on the front lines of the battle against crime.

Please take time to thank our UTSA police officers and attend a tour of the police department or the Flag Ceremony. We are celebrating National Police Week a week earlier, May 8-15, before the students and many faculty depart for the summer. Below are some of the Police Appreciation Week activities.

Midnight Pancake Breakfast (All Police Invited at No Cost) May 8, 10:00 pm - 12 midnight at Roadrunner Café

Summer Safety "Citations" wishing the students a safe summer with safety tips.  May 8-12, 2006

Police Department Open House - May 8 and 9 with tours at 10:00 am, 11:00 am, 2:00 pm and 3:00 pm each day -  If you wish to take a tour, Go to the PD lobby at the MS Building & wait for a tour guide at the above listed times.

Wreath and Flag Ceremony with Honor Guard and University Officials at the Flag Poles - May 15 at 3:00 pm.


HMO BLUE PARTICIPANTS face significant out-of-pocket premium changes for 06-07 fiscal year
Action is required by employees who are currently covered by
and wish to continue coverage in the HMO

Due to rising healthcare costs and available funding, there will be a significant cost increase to HMO plan premiums in all coverage categories.  Currently, there is no out of pocket cost for “employee only” coverage.  Those employees with dependent coverage will experience a greater out of pocket cost than those at the “employee only” level.  Additional information about the premium increase will be provided in the OEB June newsletter.  Due to the rising cost in HMO coverage, the 06-07 fiscal year will most likely be the last year the HMO Blue plan is offered to University employees. 

In previous years, you did not have to make a selection if you wanted to retain your existing coverage.  However, if you wish to continue with HMO Blue you must elect the coverage during the July Annual Enrollment period by using the UT Touch enrollment system, otherwise you will be defaulted in the PPO Plan. 

REMEMBER: If you do not take action to elect the HMO Blue plan for next year, you will be enrolled in the UT Select plan for the 06-07 fiscal year. 

Faculty and Staff who will be out of the office or who will not have access to their email accounts during the summer are encouraged to meet with a benefits representative prior to departure to ensure their annual enrollment changes will be recorded.  Please contact the Benefits Department at or 458-4250 for an appointment or to answer any additional questions.





VPBA Forum

May 25, 2006
9:30 - 11:00 a.m.
Main Building Auditorium 0.104

Shuttle #1 pick up:
 ITC at 8:15 a.m.
DTC at 8:30 a.m.

Shuttle #2 pick up:
University Heights at 8:50 a.m.

Inventory Department  -  Team Spirit Award winners

The UTSA Inventory Department's mission is to report and reconcile all university capital and controlled inventory. The inventory can either be bought by UTSA funds, transferred to or donated to UTSA departments. This year, the inventory staff overcame workload barriers, promoted procedural changes, maintained task consistency, embraced diversity and provided top-notch customer service.

The staff, Miriam Marin, George Estevez, Frank Bates, Olinda Ongay, and James Sumner, have worked together as a cohesive team, leaning on or lifting each other up to get the job done right.

This year, they managed an inventory training schedule that trained 159 people in four months. They coordinated state agency transfers with other UT System institutions and state agencies and ensured that property transfers of nearly $500,000 were recorded correctly. The team overcame file-transfer crossover failures, system errors and learning curves. They continually worked out the problems until the files were created, and confirmed the transfer of 100 percent of inventory records between three databases with accuracy and reconciliation.

According to their boss, inventory manager Cassandra Porter, "They've had an amazing year -- far exceeding established goals that couldn't have been achieved without a coordinated group effort. I'm very proud to have them on my team."

Business Affairs Service Awards
Congratulations to all Business Affairs employees who received service awards for 5, 10, 15, 20, 25 or 30 years. To view, click Service Awards.   Be sure to thank these employees for their service to UTSA.

Celebrating Excellence Award

May 31 ends the third quarter. This is the last month of the quarter and time for you to nominate a deserving Business Affairs employee for the Celebrating Excellence Award for their outstanding efforts demonstrating Creativity, Promoting Change and Communication in the performance of their duties. You can nominate someone using the Business Affairs website and clicking on the Celebrating Excellence logo or through your department using forms they've specially prepared for their internal programs. Either way, don't let this opportunity to recognize an outstanding employee go by!

Business Affairs Branding Initiative

The Business Affairs management team has partnered with Dr. Tom Cannon, Professor of Marketing and Tourism, to identify a “brand” for Business Affairs. 

To kick off our “branding” exercise, we asked members of the UTSA community “What is Business Affairs?” As expected, many people answered by describing one or more functions within Business Affairs, others described how they felt about the work done by Business Affairs – some were delighted and others were not.

Dr. Cannon, became our partner and our guide, leading us through our own “discovery” of the customer’s perspective of the benefits received when they interact with Business Affairs, and how we can build a Business Affairs brand that represents the promise we make, and keep, with our customers.

A brand is a promise, a promise to deliver products and service, based on stated objectives (for example “on time delivery”, Maytag’s lonely repairman, or BMW: “The Ultimate Driving Machine”.)  As consumers, we make purchase decisions every day as a result of positive and effective branding.  Our goal is to develop a Business Affairs brand that is representative of our commitment to excellence,…. every person, every day and every job.  We want our customers (internal and external) to feel confident in us and in our service and delivery commitment; to know that when they seek assistance, we deliver.

We are anxious to take the next step – to share what we have learned and to find out from YOU how we can, together, build a Business Affairs brand that we can all be proud of.  Lastly, and most importantly, we must work every day to deliver on our commitment to our customers, to live our BRAND

VPBA Breakfast

The next VPBA breakfast in the Roadrunner Café will be held June 21st.  There will not be a breakfast for July and August because the café is booked with orientation and summer camps.  Breakfasts will resume in September.

Environmental Health, Safety and Risk Management

Expanded Chemical Waste Storage Facility on West Campus:  On February 28th, Environmental Health, Safety and Risk Management (EHSRM) broke ground on its expansion of the Chemical Waste Storage Facility. The expansion includes an additional chemical storage building with complete containment, two material storage container units, a paved drive, and security fence. Brian Moroney, Director of EHSRM, says this expansion will serve UTSA's growing research faculty's needs for the next five years while ensuring the safe storage of these waste materials until taken offsite for reuse, recycling, or disposal. The $86,000 project is being overseen by Roy Garza, Project Coordinator with Facilities Services, constructed by Alpha Building Corporation, and scheduled for completion the first week of May.

Contractors with Alpha Construction install fence
posts at facility on West Campus

Roy Garza - FS (center left) and Brian Moroney - Director EHSRM (shovel) and members of Alpha construction team break ground on expanded facility

Ysabel Trinidad, Interim Vice President for Student Affairs

On April 24th, President Romo announced the appointment of Ysabel Trinidad as interim vice president for student affairs effective immediately.

Ysabel replaces Rosalie Ambrosino, who recently was named UTSA provost and vice president for academic affairs. We congratulate Ysabel and look forward to working with her in her new position.

Other Important Information

The Travel Office
has completed their move to their new location JPL 4.03.14, just down the hall from their old location and the Parking and Transportation Office has relocated to the fourth floor of the JPL building 4.03.03.



All requests to view or copy UTSA documents must be processed through the Vice President for Business Affairs Office. For more information, click:

REMINDER.....Please email us the new employees in your department, so we can add them to the
newsletter mailing.