November 24, 1999 A Laboratory Newspaper at Cleveland State University Vol. 1, No. 10

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CSU trustees contemplate suit against Peoplesoft

The Cleveland State University Board of Trustees has decided to demand immediate assistance from the PeopleSoft company.

The board made the decision in a special executive session that was held in between committee meetings on Tuesday, Nov. 16.

Before the Finance and Operation Facilities Committee meeting was about to begin, Chairman Bill Patient called for a vote to hold an executive session.

The vote was passed, and the executive board met behind closed doors for just over an hour.

At the meeting’s close, Patient summarized the executive session.

Patient said that the board decided to “demand that PeopleSoft immediately respond to our demands for aid and assistance on our terms.”

The chairman said that if PeopleSoft is not willing to provide immediate assistance that the board will seek to bring in outside help at PeopleSoft’s expense.

In a Wednesday, Nov.17 article, the Plain Dealer reported that the trustees are ready to sue PeopleSoft if that does not happen.

Patient said that during the meeting the board heard opinions from several experts including Joe Nolan, vice president for Human Resources Development and Labor Relations.

Nolan has also been appointed special deputy to President Claire Van Ummersen in order to be the single individual who will oversee and provide leadership in solving the financial aid problems.

The Nov. 17 Plain Dealer article also indicated that an audit of CSU showed that $1.6 million in tuition was uncollected as of June 30. That figure is about three times what it wasa year ago, according to figures.

The audit also reported that PeopleSoft software did not allow university workers to chart how old accounts are.

Patient said that the result of the discussion, including the opinions of the experts was, that the university is facing serious problems with both financial aid and the PeopleSoft system.

Patient added that the decision is not an attack on PeopleSoft, but only an effort to solve and important problem. He emphasized that many parts of PeopleSoft are working, and that the board appreciates the work that has been done to allow that to happen.

Joe Valencic, director of public relations and publications at CSU, said that CSU leaders will meet with the chief executive officer of PeopleSoft within the next few weeks to discuss the situation.

Valencic also said that PeopleSoft executives would be on campus in the next week or so.

Liz Dietz, vice president and general manager of PeopleSoft’s Learning Solutions Products Divison, said Friday, Nov. 19 that PeopleSoft and Cleveland State University are continuing their dialogue, and the company is working cooperatively with the university to assist in its implementation.

PeopleSoft had no other comment on the issue.

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The Cleveland Stater is a laboratory newspaper put out by students enrolled in classes in the Department of Communication at Cleveland State University.
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