Parking increases and pay matrix adjustment go to regents

Parking permit increases, a March 1 adjustment to the Professional and Scientific pay matrix and a request to begin planning phase two of the new Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory (VDL) are on the agenda when the state Board of Regents meets Feb. 23. The virtual event will be based at the board's Urbandale office; all public portions of the meeting will be livestreamed on the board's website. The agenda also is online.

A proposed 6% adjustment to the P&S pay matrix would align the structure with changes in the higher education jobs sector since it was adopted in September 2020. Adjustments for two pay grades in the matrix, P803 and 804, took effect Dec. 1 as part of a strategy to be more competitive in the local Ames market. If approved, the rest of the adjustments would take effect March 1. The regents' action would change the pay matrix, which sets minimum, maximum and intervals for each pay grade; salaries don't automatically move with it.

The first phase of the VDL, a $75 million project, is scheduled to open in fall 2023. It contains the laboratory's sample processing and receiving functions. The proposed $64.3 million second phase would allow all remaining testing sections of the laboratory, diagnostic research activities and administrative staff to be in one facility. The funding package for phase two is still being developed.

Parking permits

The parking division is proposing to raise parking permits about 4% for the fiscal year that begins July 1. Hourly rates at parking meters or metered lots ($1.25) would not change.

ISU lot permits

Permit type






24-hour Reserved



General staff*



Staff motorcycle









*Includes residence department and Ames Lab

Similar increases are proposed for the Memorial Union parking ramp, which is managed by the MU, not the parking division. Hourly rates at the ramp also would go up a proposed 25 cents per hour (to rates of $2.25 to $2.75 per hour), and the daily maximum would go from $17 to $20. The MU also wants to raise special fees (lost ticket, illegal exit, lost permit replacement) by $10 each.

MU ramp permits

Permit type






Fall or spring






Winter (Nov-Feb)



New centers

Iowa State will seek board permission for two new centers, the Translational AI Research and Education Center ("TrAC") in the office of the vice president for research; and the Center for Wireless, Communities and Innovation ("WiCi Center") in the College of Engineering. The latter addresses the need for leadership in rural broadband technologies and service (39% of rural U.S. lacks broadband access). The former focuses where artificial intelligence and machine learning converge, with a broad goal of solving science, engineering and societal challenges.

In other business:

  • Board staff will present the results from the board's first biennial free speech survey, conducted Nov. 9-Dec. 1, 2021, on the three university campuses. Iowa State had an employee response rate of 47.5%, and a student response rate of 10.3%, both the highest among the three schools.
  • The athletics department also will ask the board to approve a $1 million increase (to $9.1 million) to the budget for its 330-stall gameday RV parking lot east of the football stadium for fans. The increase reflects the pandemic's impact on construction materials and labor costs. The new lot and the pedestrian bridge spanning University Boulevard should be completed in time for the 2022 season.
  • The board will consider transferring, for $1, public radio station and call signs and licenses with the Federal Communications Commission, towers or tower leases and equipment used to operate the stations from the universities to Iowa Public Radio (incorporated by the board in 2006).

Iowa State will seek permission to:

  • Award an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters to Daniel Houston, a 1984 alumnus in marketing who serves as chairman, president and CEO of Des Moines-based Principal Financial Group, to recognize "one of the world’s most influential business leaders." Marketing faculty nominated Houston for the honorary degree.
  • Name the new Turkey Teaching and Research Facility for alumnus Stanley Balloun, who served as a professor in animal science and was an international expert in the science of turkey feed. A lead gift was provided by Jim and Julie Balloun of Atlanta, Georgia. Jim, also an Iowa State alumnus, is Stanley Balloun's son. The turkey facility, under construction north of the poultry farm on 520th Avenue south of Ames, should be completed this spring.
  • Demolish nine buildings on ISU's Bilsland Memorial Farm (two miles north of Madrid) that were heavily damaged in the August 2020 derecho. All functions from those buildings were relocated to other ISU farms. The land would become cropland.


Several oral reports are scheduled during the day:

  • Academic affairs committee (9 a.m. start): Winter session update,FY21 distance education
  • Campus and student affairs committee (10 a.m. start): Annual student financial aid report
  • Full board (1 p.m. start): Residence system annual report, Fall graduation and retention report