Meeting of the Winthrop University Board of Trustees Committee on Finance
Thursday, August 17, 2023 | Noon
Thompson Conference Room & Virtual | Tillman Hall Winthrop University | Rock Hill, South Carolina

Committee Members Present: Mr. Tim Sease (Committee Chair), Mr. John Brazell (Committee Vice Chair), Mr. Robbie Sisco, Mr. Joel Hamilton, Mr. Gary Williams, Mr. Glenn McCall (Ex Officio)

Committee Members Absent: Mr. Janet Smalley, Dr. Randy Imler
Other Board Members Present: Ms. Kathy Bigham, Mr. Ed Driggers, Mr. Rick Lee, Dr. David McDonald, Mr. Isaiah Venning, Dr. Ashlye Wilkerson, Gary Williams

Others Present: Dr. Edward A. Serna (President), C. Todd Hagins (Secretary to the Board and General Counsel), Justin Oates (Vice President for Finance and Business Affairs and Chief Financial Officer)

FOIA Compliance Notice
Pursuant to state law, Winthrop University published a notice to the public on its website providing the meeting notice on July 1, 2023, and posted the agenda affixed outside the Office of the President and Board of Trustees in Tillman Hall on August 15, 2023. On the day of the meeting, the Secretary to the Board caused to be affixed to the door of the meeting location the agenda for the Board and all associated committees.

Call to Order
A quorum being present Mr. Sease called the meeting to order at noon. Mr. Sease requested a call of all Committee members. The Secretary conducted a Roll Call with all members present except those provided herein.

Presentation by Justin Oates
Mr. Oates presented to the Committee the proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2023-2024. During the presentation Mr. Oates reviewed Departmental-level budgets and noted that Winthrop was pivoting from cutting to focusing on strategic growth in areas that will bring the most value to the University’s future, while continuing to focus on areas to reduce cost. Mr. Oates noted this path prevents Winthrop from continuing to cut across the board as opposed to strategic cuts balanced with funding areas of strategic opportunity.
Mr. Sisco asked Mr. Oates to explain some departments seeing increases in their budget. Mr. Oates noted some areas such as Facilities would see increases related to the Board’s priority to focus on renovating common spaces, campus grounds, and academic areas.
Mr. Oates projected Winthrop would present a balanced budget aligning the wishes of the Board and President Serna.
Committee members expressed concerns that departmental expenses were not being reduced in time and in alignment with corresponding enrollment decline. Mr. Oates answered questions from the Committee related to tuition revenue versus departmental expenses.
Mr. Oates proposed a budget that would bring the net position below $20m down to $19.58m. Mr. Sease led a discussion with Mr. Oates and other Committee members regarding holding the line at $20m net position. Mr. Oates provided an overview of numbers that reduced net position, including agreed-upon funding for President Serna’s strategic initiatives. Mr. Sease engaged with President Serna about the initiatives. President Serna noted that some money could be cut without affecting his strategic initiatives, while maintaining the $20m net position.
Mr. Sease requested consent without objection to modify the budget to be align with President Serna’s suggested compromise to allow the net position to not go below $20m. The budget was so modified after no objection.
Mr. Williams moved to adopt the Resolution for the Budget as amended. Such motion was seconded, and approved by Roll Call Vote, all members voting in the affirmative.

Mr. Sease asked for any objection to adjourning, whereupon hearing no objection, Mr. Sease announced the Committee on Finance stood adjourned at 1;07 p.m.
The Committee adjourned at 1:07 p.m.

Minutes were formally adopted on April 25, 2024, as a true and accurate record of the events of the Winthrop University Board of Trustees – Committee on Finance. Pursuant to Board By-Laws and practice such approved minutes are certified by the Secretary of the Board who is responsible for maintaining official copies of all Board-related business.