Attendees:

Rachel Bartek, Sarah Eno, Matthew Feickert, Harvey Newman, Briese Quinn, Salvatore Rappoccio, GianLuca Sabbi, Anthony Timmins, Michael Williams.

Agenda:

  1. Introduction
  2. Update on Annual Meeting
    • Can we confirm October 15-17 at Rice? [These dates were set, after the meeting.]
  3. Remarks on arrangements: local support, lunches, fees, banquet etc. Summer Party at CERN (TBC): June 19 or 20 During ATLAS Week (CMS Week is the following week).
  4. Sending our Community Letters (enclosed) to the Senate and House Appropriations Leaders
  5. Feedback from Appropriations Sub-Committees and Perspective (Breese Quinn)
  6. Feedback on the DC 2019 Trip: US LUA members on the trip who have not yet reported
  7. Follow-up with visits to district offices
  8. Discussion
  9. AOB

Minutes (note action items in bold):

  1. Introduction:
  • Harvey: we will start with planning for upcoming events (annual meeting and summer party at CERN) and community letters. Then the main focus for this meeting will be on the outcome of the DC trip, with feedback from participants, discussion and follow-up.
  1. Annual meeting organization:
  • Anthony:
    • Proposed dates are October 15-17, with our executive committee meeting and a social gathering the evening of the 15th, followed by full-day meetings the 16th and 17th.
    • Rice has been very supportive and offered to cover the rooms and coffee breaks – possibility to reduce the feeds from to 200$ to 150-180$ [Thanks to Paul Padley.]
  • GianLuca
    • Annual High Luminosity LHC meeting will be at Fermilab in the same week. This is the main meeting of the international collaboration, so it may impact the availability of AUP members and management to participate in the USLUA meeting. But it should still be possible to deliver the presentation on AUP status and have some participation from the accelerator side.
  • Harvey
    • Considering the various constraints on the schedule and good progress with this plan, we go forward with the proposed dates and location.
  1. Summer party
  • Proposed dates June 19 or 20 during the ATLAS week. CMS week is the following week so this period should be a good choice to maximize participation.
  1. Sending our Community Letters (enclosed) to the Senate and House Appropriations Leaders
  • Leland said time is now
  • [Prisca Cushman, DPF Exec Committee Chair signed the letters and we sent them
    out shortly after the meeting]
  1. Feedback from Appropriations Sub-Committees and Perspective (Breese)
  • Breese had a total of 42 meetings for the trip including 35 congressional offices and 7 with subcommittee staff. Broad distribution of hosts from both house and senate. Focus on chairs and members of appropriations sub-committees for DOE (energy and water) and NSF (commerce, justice and science) and also authorizations sub-committees.
  • Main comments, questions and general feedback from the meetings:
    • HEP is the “gold standard” on how to manage programs and held as an example to other fields;
    • many would like to know the split of funding between DOE and NSF, both for projects and university grants ;
    • questions about the next phase of program reviews, whether it is a review of P5, a new P5, Snowmass etc. – this is actually a recurring question since the last couple of years and we need to put together a response.
      • Sarah: there is an understanding that DOE and NSF are not in favor of this, was this communicated to the offices?
      • Breese: no, since delegation was not authorized to discuss, but yes for various reasons DOE and NSF are not in favor of starting this process in the near term. Nevertheless some answer has to be prepared.
    • A congressional budget agreement will be essential in order to move forward the process: community should help advocating for it
    • Many staff and members are very concerned about the president’s budget request of a 20% funding cut and would like to know specifically what would be the consequences. In this context, there are also more general concerns about how we do budget cycles: agencies have to plan to the president’s request and then later when appropriation cycle is done they have to adjust back to higher numbers and this causes disruptive program planning.
  • Specific points from individual committees
    • There is somewhat different point of view between the House and Senate Energy and Water appropriations sub-committees, which are by far the most important for us.
    • On the house side, (a) asked about the research fraction and whether it is sufficient. This not only from members who worry about support for work in their district, but also House EW staff insist on need to maintain 40% research level called for in P5. They are concerned about running the experiments and getting the science out, and also workforce development
    • Harvey: this point needs to be reported in full to the next HEPAP on May 30-31. Note that (a) looking at the budget planning presentation from Alan Stone at the last meeting, the research funding in dollars is lower than it was in 2010; (b) there are some questions on how research funding is defined, in particular new initiatives like quantum information science is considered core research; SBIR seems to be included as well.
    • Also on the house side, democrat staff wanted to make clear that there would not be significant increases like in the past few years, democrats have different priorities. Expect flat, possibly a cut or at most inflation adjustment
    • On the Senate side, very different picture mainly because of Senator Alexander (Chair of the Senate Energy and Water sub-committee) push for funding at the National Labs. However, he will be retiring in two years. But staff is more optimistic about funding. This was reinforced by Sen. Shelby (Chair of Appropriations committee) who said they would like to maintain strong support for science.
    • Harvey: in addition to the meeting minutes, it would be useful to prepare a brief summary of these points to bring to the HEPAP meeting.
  1. Additional feedback on the DC 2019 Trip: US LUA members on the trip
  • Matthew:
    • First time on the trip, everything went well and was generally impressed with the organization and the coordinated effort; the information packet was very useful, the offices were particularly interested in the district-by-district sheets on funding and purchases by the programs. Staffers said it was very useful information to them, and would go to congressional representative. For the future we should try to add as much information as possible at the individual district level including students, funding, PhD coming out of those regions will be useful.
  • Rachel
    • Also was on the trip for the first time. She agrees that the district sheets helped things go smoothly and feel prepared despite being a primary on the very first meetings. One particular challenge was that there was historic flooding in her home state of Nebraska, for this kind of situation it would be useful to get some advice on how to acknowledge the emergency while getting the points across.
  • Sal
    • Has been on many (8) of the previous trips. For the first time he was not able to talk with staffers in some of the offices, these were mostly new members and just trying to get up to speed. Also in some case both congressman and staffers were back in their districts since congress was not in session (Breese: when dates of the trip were decided congress was scheduled to be in session, it changed after the shutdown. Harvey: This was still the “right” week as programmatic requests from Congressional offices to the appropriations committees were due right after, or shortly after the trip)
    • Aside from that, generally positive feedback and support for the ask, different from what Breese reported (Breese: this is mainly due to different long standing positions from the two parties both support science but democrats give priority to applied science vs. fundamental science for republicans.
    • Sam agrees but thinks we can make progress working with individual offices, many if which are in strong support of HEP. This is of course particularly true in districts that receive strong funding e.g. New York and Massachusetts, Illinois etc. and this applies to both sides
    • Recommends more sustained discussions and interactions with the offices in between trips
  • Harvey
    • Generally supporting feedback from all meetings with the possible exception of Grace Meng (D-NY) who had some concerns about specific support to her district.
    • For the agency meetings: Steve Binkley (DOE SC Deputy Director) reiterated that P5 is the gold standard and the office of HEP does a great job of presenting P5 to the office of science. They discuss the concern about the research fraction and he is aware of it.
    • Meeting with OMB and OSTP representatives (a new OSTP director was recently appointed). Generally positive feedback; but support for fundamental science is now closely tied to applications and public-private partnerships, so that’s where the discussion needs to focus. OSTP asked about the next P5, similar to what was mentioned by Breese.
    • NSF meeting was held at the URA and was also very positive. One point to note is that while DOE has activities in 34% of the districts, for NSF the fraction is 86%. From that point of view there is a substantial benefit
    • At the DOE, Jim Siegrist could not attend but met with Mike Procario and Alan Stone. Alan had a specific comment that we are in 5th year of the 10 year plan and we should start the process toward some new project starts, but it takes several years for this to take place, and therefore it should start soon.
  • Sal: there has been discussion about having the next Snowmass in 2021-22, and this is related to the European strategy timeline; that report is planned to be out in May 2020.  [After the meeting: DPF Executive Committee is planning for the start of Snowmass for the Summer of 2021.]
  • Breese: the problem with this argument in congress is that it comes across as not leading, waiting for the international community to tell us what to do
  • Harvey: if we bring up new project, does it mean that we have a new top priority? This is not the message that we want to send as both HL-LHC and the neutrino program are 20+ year projects and still the highest priorities. The focus of the first P5 was on being able to converge on priorities and start new projects, but for the next one will have to be different. Need to transition the 20 year vision which was in the first P% toward a specific plan for the second 10 years.
  • Sal: would it be acceptable to state that the current plan is successful and propose a continuation without significant changes?
  • Breese: In principle yes but it has to come out from a formal and credible review process. The review should include some analysis of the results so far and how they are being used to plan the next steps, and also include a timeline and steps for coming up with the plan for the next phase. P5 implementation started one year after the report, so the new plan is needed by 2023. But the P5 review should happen before the next DC trip.
  • Gordon: there are three connected points being discussed, Snowmass, P5 and how to communicate with Congress. There is already a plan for Snowmass and P5 would build on that. Timing is tricky but the perhaps what’s important right now is to make sure that both HEPAP and DPF committees are informed about these concerns. Like for the current plan it is essential to build a community consensus and that requires both Snowmass and P5 with adequate time allocated to each.
  • Harvey: we need to bring these points to the next HEPAP meeting in May and this needs to be prepared with discussion with the various stakeholders between now and then.
  1. Follow-up with visits to district offices
  • We have a general action item as a follow up to the DC trip to ask members to contact their district offices. Most important will be to contact the Democrat members of the House Energy and Water subcommittee, as well as congressmen who have been traditionally supportive of science.
  • Another item will be to follow up on Dear Colleague letters. It seemed that response was very good, we should try to find out more details on how many signed and who signed.
  1. Discussion/AOB
  • Comments are included in each section

Attendees: Darin Acosta , Jahred Adelman, Viviana Cavaliere, Sarah Demers, Julia Gonsky, Corinne Mills, Jane Nachtman, Harvey Newman, GianLuca Sabbi, Sheldon Stone, Anthony Timmins. Partial attendance: Usha Mallik, Verena Martinez, Toyoko Orimoto, Sarah Eno.

Agenda:

  1. Introduction; Quick background on US LUA for Newcomers; Activities and Priority Items; FY19 User Group Letter to Congress requesting the Senate Mark (Harvey)
  2. July 19 Party and other Quality of Life committee Activities (Usha)
  3. Annual Meeting: organization, conference website update, agenda, next steps (Corrinne)
  4. HEP Lab Management liaison to US LUEC (Harvey)
  5. Email list transition (Gordon)
  6. US LUA Web site and content (Viviana)

Minutes (note action items in bold):

  1. Introduction: background on US LUA for Newcomers; activities and priority Items; FY19 User Group Letter to Congress requesting the Senate Mark (Harvey)
  • Brief introduction on USLUA
    • Hosted by URA which helped form the association and achieve non-profit status
    • Main activities: support the US scientists working on LHC: practical information and networking for people who are getting started
    • Liaison to the advisory committee on CERN users that handles important issues of interest such as medical insurance
    • Provide communication channels with funding agencies and Congress: community letters and DC visits
    • Priority items where the committee needs to focus in the next future include:
      • Website (update content, committee members are helping but consider hiring a webmaster like we used to have)
      • Mailing list: need to clean up and transition to Mail Chimp
      • Fundraising: looked in various directions with limited results, also for this area we might consider hiring a dedicated person
    • Strong support by Congress in recent/ongoing budget cycles is in part the result of effective communication and DC visits coordinated by the user groups
      • Latest information indicates 1.01B for HEP for FY19 on both the House and Senate side, well above P5 guidance. A community letter supporting this funding level has been prepared, and was sent to the House and Senate Appropriations leadership
  1. July 19 Party and other Quality of Life committee Activities (Usha)
  • Party is scheduled for July 19, organization is proceeding well with help from Viviana and Corrinne. [ Note from the party: Usha, who has done a great job as Quality of Life committee chair, gives notice that this will be her last year in this role, and is passing the torch].
  • There will be several speakers from the experiments and user support.
  • Also need to make sure to reach out to US community at CERN and make sure everyone is informed. Send reminders through available channels (mailing lists, social media etc.)
    • Harvey: USLUA
    • Sarah Eno: CMS
    • Sarah Demers: ATLAS
    • Sheldon Stone: LHCb
    • Anthony Timmins: ALICE
  • Other updates from the Quality of Life committee:
    • CERN user’s office is still not able to provide information on new visitors arriving from the US. Usha will collect some specific examples and then Harvey and Usha will visit the user’s office to get some clarification on this issue and discuss ways to make improvements
    • Richard Teuscher (Teuscher@cern.ch) from Univ. Toronto is our new representative in the Advisory Committee of CERN Users – ACCU. Harvey will make contact with him to discuss issues of interest for USLUA.
  1. Annual Meeting: Organization, conference website update, agenda, next steps (Corrinne)
  • The meeting will be October 24-26 at Fermilab.
  • Corinne prepared some slides on the current status and next steps which are available on the indico page of the meeting: https://indico.cern.ch/event/744391/
  • Additional details and discussion points:
    • Consider including a description of the purpose of the meeting and what people can expect to get out of it (Harvey will work on this with Corinne)
    • Plan for Wednesday is Executive Committee at 4 pm and reception at 6 pm in the Crossover (worked well last time around)
    • On the first day there will be only one talk for each experiment instead than two and 3 Lightning Round (LR) sessions instead than 4 (survey indicated a preference for fewer presentations and more time for interaction among participants)
      • Harvey asks to allow for up to 20 LR talks. Right now it’s 18 (6/hour for 3 hours) would need another 20 min.
    • Corrinne is asking for initial suggestions regarding specific speakers and chairs for discussion sessions. Some initial names were mentioned but all committee members are asked so send suggestions to Corinne to ensure a strong and well balanced pool.
    • Harvey: on Friday, consider combining lunch with cross-experiment discussion groups rather than discussion with HEPAP and Agency reps. This would allow longer time for these discussion groups (say 90 min instead than 60 min) and free up some time in the main agenda for more LR talks. No decision on this, but for the time being we do not attach a specific discussion to the Friday lunch.
    • Another suggestion from Harvey is to attach an update on the European Strategy as part of the “physics at future colliders” presentation
    • Local participation and meeting room. It is not possible to reserve 1 West as we had hoped, in part to increase local participation. Current proposal is for IARC lecture hall. The only option in Wilson Hall would be Curia 2 which holds only 50-70 people. Sheldon thinks Curia II would still be a better option and sufficient based on last year’s attendance, but we would like to increase attendance. Corinne will confirm on Curia 2 size and ask about possibly holding both rooms for some time while we make a decision.
      • There is also request that the meeting organizers make an appointment with IT one week in advance of the meeting for A/V training, this does not work well for external people. We would like to book it for Wednesday.
    • Other suggestions:
      • The career panel is usually focused on industry but could we add one to discuss careers in academia. This could be scheduled earlier in the day (as panelists could be chosen among people participating in the meeting) and could include moving from HEP to a different research field.
      • There was also a suggestion for a presentation/discussion on how funding works in the US. There is consensus on asking some of the assistant professors to talk about their experience with the funding process. This presentation could also touch on the issue of balance of research vs project funding.
      • For a CERN management presentation, Fabiola Gianotti would clearly be the best choice. Harvey will ask if she would be willing to give a remote presentation.
      • Cost was mentioned as an issue in the survey. There was some discussion regarding the fee for local vs external people. No change is foreseen at the moment.
  1. HEP Lab Management liaison to US LUEC (Harvey)
  • We have discussed in previous meetings having Lab management representative in the executive committee. This person would bring the view from the Labs and their suggestions on USLUA activities. JoAnn Hewitt of SLAC was mentioned as a possible candidate for the first term. She recently became the head of HEPAP in addition to being an associate Lab director at SLAC Harvey will follow up with JoAnn to confirm if she would be willing to serve in this role.
  1. Email list (Gordon)
  • Gordon was not able to attend the meeting. Harvey will follow up with him on the status of the email list and its transition to MailChimp.
  1. US LUA Web site and content (Viviana)
  • Viviana has started to update the web site documents but she does not have administrator rights and this limits her ability to implement changes. Gordon may be able to help with this
  • Current focus is on the relocation guide to CERN:
    • Working on updated procedures for registration, etc.
    • In some case, better to delete old information, e.g. banking
    • Harvey: a useful piece of information Credit card which do not charge international fees
    • For Visas, CERN has a good page that we can simply link to that
  • Also updating some of the older pictures with more recent ones. There is an issue with the logo picture, the one on the web site is old and for the new one Viviana has a version that shows an underline from the spell checker
    • Harvey circulated a picture after the meeting that does not show the underline
    • Also working with Yangyang and David on pictures from the DC trip and the US Science and Engineering festival.
  • Web site discussion and suggestions
    • Harvey: Add link to AIP federal budget tracker page and link to information on how to contact your congressman; increase the font size
    • Regarding the GDPR: Harvey will prepare a short statement for the web site. If/when CERN completes their GSPR policy document we can link to that too. An initial statement on CERN data privacy protection has been published at. https://home.cern/data-privacy-protection-statement But in general, it looks like implementation is going smoothly without any particular issues or disruptions.
    • It would be useful to include an article on the importance of communicating with congress and advocating for government support, we will ask Yangyang if she could help with that
    • Harvey: we could also ask people to write articles based on presentations made at the annual meeting [Note: Yangyang has agreed to prepare one such article by end August].

 

Attendees: Darin Acosta, Jahred Adelman, Yangyang Cheng, Julia Gonski, Usha Mallik, Verena Martinez, David Miller, Corinne Mills, Harvey Newman, Jane Nachtman, GianLuca Sabbi, Sheldon Stone, Gordon Watts

Agenda:

  1. 2018 HEP Trip to DC (Harvey, Yangyang, Jane)
  2. European Strategy and the High Energy LHC (Harvey)
  3. NSF Notice (Harvey)
  4. USA Science and Engineering Festival April 7-8 (Verena, Julia, Harvey)
  5. EU General Data Protection Regulation (Harvey)
  6. Finances (Gordon)
  7. Subcommittee Membership (Jahred)
  8. 2018 Annual Meeting (Corrinne)
  9. Proposal for Lab Management representation on the US LUEC (Harvey)
  10. Subcommittee Reports (Committee chairs)

Minutes (note action items in bold):

  1. 2018 HEP Trip to DC (Harvey, Yangyang, Jane)

Harvey:

  • The trip was very well organized, thanks in particular to the Fermilab user’s organization. New tools were made available to help schedule and prepare meetings. The informational material was also very good, including some VR tools in addition to one pagers etc.
  • Participation and coverage of congressional offices were good although perhaps a bit lower than in some of the previous years. 55 participants, 375 offices visited (75% of the house and 80% of the senate). Very positive reception.
  • The initial plan was to focus on FY18 HEP funding (860 M$ ask) but quickly learned that appropriators were in the final stages of negotiating FY18 budget and offices not involved in appropriations were already working on FY19. We were strongly encouraged to formulate FY19 ask and quickly converged on 910 M$
  • Afterwards we learned that FY18 budget was 908M$, well above the FY17 funding FY18 ask and close to FY19 ask. This is a remarkably good result. Next question is how it will be allocated, one would expect some increase in the research programs but initial feedback from DOE is unexpectedly not optimistic. Harvey discussed with Andy Lankford who is supportive of an increase in research funding. As a next step he will talk with Jim Siegrist to better understand the DOE perspective, and report to the committee on the results.

 

[Notes added: Discussion with Jim Siegrist and Abid Patwa did not lead to a clear view of how the research lines would benefit from the favorable top-line number. The point was made that Congress expects that the favorable top line number will lead to a significantly improved situation for research and the universities and labs.

FY19 updated Ask letter for $ 969M was assembled and sent quickly; went out April 5.]

  • Met with representatives from OMB (Tali Bar-Shalom) and OSTP (Lloyd Whitman and colleague). OSTP was particularly engaged and informed that research programs were facing cuts unless a favorable budget could be secured. They offered to help with coordination across programs however DOE OS/OHEP should have primary responsibility in this area. Harvey requested that basic research gets higher priority in OSTP memo and it appears that it was accepted, but the specific wording is still not available.

Update: The August 2017 memo specifying R&D priorities for FY 2019 is accessible here:

https://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/whitehouse.gov/files/omb/memoranda/2017/m-17-30.pdf

Excerpts follow:

  • At the meeting with NSF the focus was on diversity. Harvey invites comments from Jane who also participated in the meeting:

o   Regarding the DC trip in general, Jane found that the organization is getting more professional with better outreach materials, and a smooth meeting setup thanks to the new software

o   Feedback from meetings in congressional offices was very positive

o   On diversity, we should be aware of the NSF interest in this topic and might consider taking some initiatives in USLUA, but no specific suggestions at this time

o   Julia asks some clarification on the NSF discussion, for example, are there any new programs being created

o   Harvey: they have a new effort on preventing sexual harassment, see next agenda item for details. But the initiative is broader including rights of protected groups/classes, and outreach to different communities. One issue is that the agency making recommendations but there is little/no support to implement them.

  • Meeting at DOE HEP (Harvey):

o   Jim Siegrist was positively impressed with the informational material and suggested that it could be used in coordination with the state department to promote our field in the international context

o   On the FY18 budget, DOE is not ready to move forward with funding decisions. This might have an impact on programs already under financial strain due to the CR

  • Additional comments on trip:

o   Yangyang notes that many of the people who were on the trip for the first time did an excellent job. Perhaps we should give more opportunities to junior participants to advocate, for example by being assigned as a primary. In some case, they might have special connections to some of the offices (e.g. home district, etc.). We also need to be careful of the image we project when we send two people, and one of them, who might be younger or a minority, appears to be relegated to a secondary role.

o   Harvey: this depends on how various factors are accounted for in the scheduling software. A related consideration is that we were not able to cover some important offices, e.g. Kamala Harris (CA), it might help to allow more people to be primaries.

 

  1. European Strategy and the High Energy LHC

Harvey reports on recent news from a conversation with Nigel Lockyer

  • The European strategy is currently being formulated with lots of community input. Among the main initiatives is the High Energy LHC and this should be discussed also in the US community
  • Primary focus should be on physics opportunities rather than funding or schedule. A white paper is being discussed among the experiments.
  • In parallel there are discussions underway on what could be a suitable US contribution. From a financial standpoint a figure of 250 M$ over 10 years has been considered. From a technical standpoint high field magnets might be the focus of the US contribution since they are critical for the machine and the US has special expertise in this area, following the LARP R&D program. Note that LARP had a broad R&D portfolio including accelerator physics, instrumentation and components such as SC magnets and cavities, plus the Toohig fellowship. This has been greatly reduced to make room for the construction of hardware deliverables for HL-LHC and LARP is being terminated.
  1. NSF Notice

Harvey:

  • Request for public comment (by May 4) on a new reporting requirement for sexual harassment, other forms of harassment, or sexual assault. It would affect all PIs and co-PIs on NSF grants
  • Several emails were circulated and supplementary Information can be found at the following link:

https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2018/03/05/2018-04374/reporting-requirements-regarding-findings-of-sexual-harassment-other-forms-of-harassment-or-sexual

  1. USA Science and Engineering Festival April 7-8

Verena who is leading the effort for US LUA reports on the USLUA contribution and organization

  • USLUA will support two groups one from Johns Hopkins and one from Fermilab, each has 20×10 boot which is fairly large
  • Main contacts are Andrei Gritsan for Johns Hopkins and Spencer Passero (Head of Office of Education and Public Outreach) for Fermilab
  • There appears to be a large imbalance in staffing between the two, about 10 people for Johns Hopkins but only 2 from Fermilab so we might concentrate on the latter
  • In terms of displays the plan includes:

o   ATLAS VR (David Miller). Fully interactive, can walk through the detector or the cavern, remove parts etc. Very successful but long lines to handle

o   Setups playing videos on CMS and LHC data from Verena

o   FNAL will have a liquid nitrogen show and because of this they will drive a van which can be used by other people who need to ship stuff

o   Life size posters of LHC, people can take selfies

  • Main issue is manpower. At the moment 6 people signed up from LHC area. This is not enough considering the number of displays, the need to guide and prepare people waiting in line especially for the VR, and the long hours 9 am to 6 pm. We should try to recruit additional people who are based in that area
  • There is also interest in setting up virtual visits but the main concern is about internet connection. Fiber is too expensive so we will need to use the available wifi or cell. Need to check/confirm quality of connection after we get there.

o   Julia reports that on the ATLAS side there are 6-7 people who have signed up to cover 2 hours (6 to 8 CERN time)

o   No feedback yet from the CMS side

  • Sound can also be an issue, lots of background noise. Verena will try to get splitter and multiple headphones
  1. EU General Data Protection Regulation

Harvey:

  • GDPR is a major expansion of EU regulations aiming at protection of personal data and preventing misuse. Examples are requiring explicit consent to use of data, reporting of any breach within 72 hrs. to people affected, etc. Any institution with connections with the EU (e.g. staff/students who are EU nationals) will be affected
  • We were first alerted to this by Joel Butler and Joe Incandela (DPF chair) and have been gathering information on how US universities and labs are reacting
  • Sheldon asks if CERN is included given that main site is CH, but it would be hard to claim an exception given the site geography and large number of EU population
  • Gordon mentions that many US institutions are moving forward to implement these requirements, including UW, and some larger meetings across universities have taken place so there are opportunities for coordinated efforts.
  • Harvey has found a good source of information at https://er.educause.edu/
  1. Finances

Gordon:

  • About 18k$ currently in the account
  • Large variations in month to month spending, high expenses in connection with events like DC trip, S&E festival, annual meeting, low expenses in between:

o   Dec-Feb <500/month

o   March 5500$, November 3500$

  • In total 20 k$ spend over the last year vs 15 k$ income. Ok for now but need to correct this trend or situation will become critical in the next year or two. Need to think if we should focus on small or large contributions

o   Harvey: it would be useful to list the expenses not related to lobbying e.g. S&E festival, for these it might be easier to get support from the Labs

o   Sheldon suggests that when Harvey talks to Jim Siegrist he might ask about any outreach funding we can get for some of the activities, e.g. annual meeting

o   Harvey will follow up on this with Siegrist, but need to keep well separated from any lobbying activity [Update: Siegrist suggested we talk to NSF. Harvey will talk to Randy Ruchti.]

  • Future expenses:

o   Website hosting no longer free, expect 25$/month. We could try to be hosted by a lab but from past discussions we prefer to avoid any direct connection

o   For the mailing list, Gordon has used MailChimp for ICHEP with good results, thinks we could use it for USLUA

  • It’s free below a certain number of monthly emails but if we go over even just for one month we have to pay from that point on. Anyways fee is not high perhaps 20$/month
  • It has nice features e.g. bounces are automatically removed from the list
  • However it does not allow to send to the list from the mail application, need to go through the web site which makes it a bit more involved
  1. Subcommittee Membership

Jahred:

  • Still missing some subcommittee chairs, need some volunteers among people who are not chairing already
  • Current status:

o   Outreach not covered

o   Finance: Gordon

o   Communications: Yangyang

o   Web not covered

Harvey:

  • We need to improve the web site and update content. Perhaps this is an area where Labs could contribute by assigning staff or paying for contract staff to work on this
  • Committee members should agree on who will be the chair. Will give some time then will start asking directly

Darin offers to work on updating the newcomers guide

Update: committee list as of 4/7/18:

  1. 2018 Annual Meeting

Corinne:

  • Regarding location, Jahred was going to talk to Argonne but otherwise it would be at FNAL
  • We will discuss more in detail at the next meeting

 

  1. Proposal for Lab Management representation on the US LUEC (Harvey)

 

  • Harvey will write and circulate a proposal

 

  1. Subcommittee Reports (Committee chairs – if time permits)

 

  • Due to lack of time, will discuss at the next meeting

 

  1. AOB

 

  • Usha was finally able to talk to people in CERN user’s office after the recent management changes
  • Harvey will be at CERN in April, starting around the 15-16 and will arrange a meeting with Eckhard Elsen on this topic

 

Next meeting will be in about 3 weeks.

Attendees: Darin Acosta, Jahred Adelman, Viviana Cavaliere, Yangyang Cheng, Usha Malik, Corinne Mills, Harvey Newman, Jane Nachtman, Toyoko Orimoto, GianLuca Sabbi, Gordon Watts

 

Agenda:

  1. Preparations for the DC trip (Harvey, Yangyang)
  2. Discussion on how to strengthen/formalize our support from the Labs (Harvey)
  3. usparticlephysics.org and materials for the DC Trip folder (Jahred, Viviana)
  4. Preparations for the USA Science and Engineering Festival (Verena, Corrinne, Harvey)
  5. Virtual Visits and Invitations for in-person; congressional visits to CERN (Harvey, Julia)
  6. Committee Assignments (Jahred)
  7. Goals and plans for each committee in 2018 (committee chairs)
  8. Budget status (Gordon)
  9. AOB

Minutes (note action items in bold):

  1. Preparations for the DC trip (Harvey, Yangyang)
    1. Dates are March 6-8, 1-2 weeks earlier than usual. Need to accelerate/complete planning in some areas e.g. handouts (more details under agenda item 3) and meeting scheduling. Participants meet at URA on March 6 for a last briefing and to get folders before starting their congressional office visits. The following visits to executive offices will also be taking place:
      • Thursday March 8 around 11:00 AM – Noon (Time TBC): OMB with Dr. Avital (Tali) Bar-Shalom (Examiner for the DOE Office of Science) Lloyd Whitman and OSTP staff
      • Thursday March 8 at 2:00 PM: DOE Office of Science HQ, Dr. Steve Binkley
      • Thursday March 8 at 4:30 PM: meeting at NSF with Drs. Denise Caldwell (PHY), Saul Gonzalez (EPP), Mark Coles, (EPP), Professor Randy Ruchti (EPP), and EPP staff.
      • Friday, March 9 at 10 AM: DOE Germantown with Dr. Jim Siegrist and Office of HEP Staff
    2. USLUA participants: currently 16 people, an updated list is provided in Appendix to the minutes. This number is a bit lower compared to those of previous years (around 20). There might be conflicts with the academic schedules due to the earlier timing of the trip.
    3. Organization of congressional visits and visits to appropriation committees: primaries are currently being selected based on the connection files. Breese Quinn is arranging meetings with representatives from the 8 major committees involved in authorizing appropriations for DOE NSF and the labs.
      Note Added (HN): Breese Quinn has been in touch with Committee staff; they are in “Lockdown” until March 23, meaning that they are focusing on finalizing the FY18 budget.
    4. Budget outlook and request.
      • A short (“ask”) statement summarizing the funding request for DOE HEP had been agreed upon prior to the 2017 DC trip. Then in May and October 2017 joint letters by APS DPF, FNAL UEC, US LUA, and SLUO were sent to the chairs of the energy and water appropriation committees in both the house and senate. The letters indicated specific funding requests adjusted to reflect the evolution of the budget process, and emphasized a proper balance between projects and research at the universities and labs.
      • The FY18 budget is still not finalized. Current references are 825 M$ in the house bill and 860 M$ in the senate bill. The 860 M$ figure was emphasized in the October 2017 letter. The FY19 president budget request has just been released. DOE HEP is down significantly at 770 M$.
      • On the FY 2018 Ask (update by HN): The Ask for FY 2018 is now finalized, requesting $ 860M for FY18 for the DOE Office of Science and $ 8B for NSF which is the FY18 figure supported by the Coalition for NSF Funding (http://cnsf.us/). FY 2019 funding is not part of the Ask itself, but if asked about it we know that CNSF is asking $ 8.45B (+5.6 % above the FY 2018 amount) in a public letter, and we know unofficially that $ 910M is being discussed for DOE Office of High Energy Physics. We will likely produce a letter concerning FY19 funding once FY18 funding is final.
      • For the NSF side heir policy is to advocate for a total budget rather than for specific areas or projects, and this reflected in our Ask.
  1. Discussion of how to strengthen/formalize our support from the Labs.
    1. There has been some email discussion on designating a seat in the executive committee with a two year term for a laboratory directorate member who will act as our point of contact, make sure the lab managements are informed of important items, and provide feedback
      • Names proposed include JoAnne Hewett (SLAC, Director of Particle Physics Division, and Associate Lab Director); Joe Lykken (FNAL, Deputy Director and Chief Research Officer with direct oversight of US LHC programs);  Natalie Roe (LBNL, Director of Physics Division), Berndt Mueller (BNL, Associate Director for HEP and Nuclear Physics), David Lissauer (BNL, Deputy Associate Lab Director for High Energy Physics), Marcel Demarteau (Argonne, High Energy Physics Division Director)
        Note Added (HN): the proposal for lab management participation in the US LUEC is has been discussed with JoAnne Hewett, as follows –
             We would like to ensure that each year we have a very active participant/advisor who will be engaged with our US LUEC committee, guide us, help us strengthen our efforts and/or fill in areas where our efforts could be stronger, and get the word out to increase the engagement of the US LHC community.
           The idea is to have a subcommittee (which we have the right to form under our articles and bylaws) of ex officio members, where each year the subcommittee would designate one member to be most actively engaged.
           Given the level of responsibility and “busy-ness” of the members of this subcommittee, we would also request that if the  designated active member could not make it to a given meeting or participate in an important event, then she/he would reach out to have one of the other members of the subcommittee participate. The number of US LUEC meetings with active participation of a member of this subcommittee was discussed, and four per year seems the right number.  Of course we would invite and welcome all the members of the subcommittee to attend on each occasion if they chose; and we might have specific issues of interest to them at some of our meetings.

        Steps forward:

        Once we have comments and suggestions from US LUEC members, then we would find a good way to introduce the idea to the other designated members of the proposed subcommittee, after which we could have a conference call with them including Q&A. Then if all went well, we could launch the subcommittee at a future US LUEC meeting; preferably this Spring.

           Harvey

    2. Corinne asks to clarify the goals from both the USLUA and Directorate standpoint
      1. HN: in the past where have been instances where the user organizations were left out of relevant decisions or plans. Monthly meetings with the directorates were proposed to help circulate information and provide feedback, but recently they have always been canceled. So we are looking for possible alternatives
    3. HN will formulate a statement to solicit Lab’s feedback on this proposal
  2. usparticlephysics.org and materials for the DC Trip folder (Jahred, Viviana)
    1. Harvey: material being assembled for the DC trip is good but US LHC one-pagers are missing and would be very useful. They can be printed at the Fedex next to URA, with help from URA staff.
    2. Jahred: using identical material from previous trips is not advisable
    3. Viviana will get in touch with Sarah Charlie at CERN to see if there is any recent material that we can use
    4. Harvey will send one of the recent USLUA one pagers to Viviana for reference
  3. Preparations for the USA Science and Engineering Festival (Verena, Corrinne, HN)
    1. The event is scheduled for April 7-8. We have received a positive response from Andrei Gritsan (John Hopkins) to share their space
    2. Ideally we would like 6-8 participants in order to staff the display and also allow to look around and get a better sense of the event and how to improve in future years
    3. Verena has been very active in last year’s event and we will ask her to coordinate the preparations, the goal is to be on track in 3 weeks
    4. We have been authorized to use the VR display by Sarah Charlie at CERN, but need to learn how to run it. Yangyang will follow up with Sarah on this
  1. Virtual Visits and Invitations for in-person visits (Julia, Verena)
    1. Will come back to this topic at the next meeting since Julia/Verena could not participate today
  1. Committee Assignments (Jahred)
    1. Jahred will send the current status in an email after the meeting (in appendix)
    2. Gordon is willing to continue as treasurer
    3. We are still missing chairs for outreach, communications, and web
  1. Status and goals/plans for each committee
    1. Quality of life (Usha):
      • The CERN user office is undergoing substantial changes under new leadership. We need clarifications but emails are not effective
      • Gordon will be at CERN for 2 weeks and offers to help. Usha will send contact information and arrange a skype call to provide more details on current issues and US user’s requests
      • Harvey asks if there have been any relocation/integration issues with new users visiting CERN. Usha has not heard anything for the last several months
      • Harvey suggests exploring if some of the young people who are spending longer periods at CERN might be willing to help in areas such as virtual/in person visits. Also check if any of them are planning a trip back to the US around the time of the science and engineering festival and they are willing to help, in this case we might partially support their travel
    2. Government relations (Yangyang)
      • Main focus is on DC trip preparations
      • Harvey: try to arrange follow up conversations (after the CD trip) in order to maintain connections. Back in 2016 we also had a plan to encourage and facilitate visits to local congressmen from members of the community
      • Yangyang will provide guidelines based on previous activities in these areas to be used as reference for future involvement
    3. Elections (Jahred)
      • Election cycle was just completed, nothing to report at his time
    4. Annual meeting (Harvey, Yangyang)
      • Harvey: we need to start thinking about location and dates. Notes that the last meeting was held at FNAL but participation was not as strong as one might have expected
      • Corinne will work on a revised agenda based on answers to the survey. Showing that we are responsive to the community input should help get stronger attendance
      • Jahred will check on the possibility to have the meeting at ANL which has similar advantages to FNAL in terms of central location and lower cost, while maintaining the tradition to host the meeting at a different lab every second year
      • Other suggestions are welcome and we need more discussion on how to get the local community more engaged
  1. Budget (Gordon)
    1. Financial status will be addressed in detail at the next meeting
    2. Yangyang reports we had good success in getting support for young people traveling to DC from their local research groups. Requests for USLUA support are at the level of 50% for 4-5 people. She also mentions that some of the LR winners are approaching the end of their appointments and are actively looking for jobs. In some case they were not able to join the DC trip due to conflicts with job interviews.
    3. Harvey indicates that we should be able to support additional people if we can find suitable candidates
  2. AOB
    1. Harvey reminds that we need to make more progress on web content. David Miller is now an observer and offered to help
    2. Next meeting will be shortly after the DC trip and focus on its outcome

Appendix B: current status of USLUA sub-committees

By USLUEC members:

  • Darin Acosta – Quality of life, Communications, and Web presence
  • Jahred Adelman – Government relations, Rules + Elections (Chair)
  • Usha Mallik – quality of life (chair), rules + election, government relations
  • Toyoko Orimoto – Quality of Life, Outreach, Communications, and Web Presence
  • Sheldon Stone – Vice Chair + Rules and elections
  • Gianluca Sabbi – Secretary + Government relations + Outreach
  • Anthony Timmins – Quality of Life, Annual meeting, Government relations
  • Harvey Newman – chair, government relations, outreach, finance + fundraising, rules + elections, annual meeting
  • Corrinne Mills – quality of life, government relations, annual meeting
  • Yangyang Chang – government relations (chair), communications
  • Gordon T. Watts – finance + fundraising, web, communications + treasurer
  • Viviana Cavaliere – quality of life, web, government relations
  • Verena I. Martinez Outschoorn – outreach, quality of life, annual meeting
  • Jane Nachtman: Outreach, Web

By committee:

  • Quality of life: Usha (chair), Corrinne, Viviana, Darin, Toyoko, Anthony, Verena
  • Government relations: Yangyang (chair), Jahred, Usha, Gianluca, Corrinne, Viviana, Harvey, Anthony
  • Annual meeting: Harvey (chair), Anthony, Corrinne, Verena
  • Elections: Jahred (chair), Harvey, Sheldon, Usha
  • Outreach: Gianluca + Harvey + Toyoko, Jane, Verena NO CHAIR
  • Finance + fundraising: Gordon + Harvey + NO CHAIR
  • Communications: Yangyang, Gordon, Darin + Toyoko NO CHAIR
  • Web: Gordon, Darin, Viviana, Jane, Toyoko NO CHAIR

Welcome all

Selection of officers

  • Newman: Chair, vice-chair: Sheldon
  • People have a few days to send on the mailing list if they wish to have an election for Chair
  • Secretary: Deals with URA and a few other responsibilities.
    • Gianluca is willing to continue. If there are others, they should say something via email.
  • Let Jared know if you want to take over any of the elected positions (chair, secretary, etc.)

Committees

  • Quality of Life: Usha is willing to continue, but we are searching for a co-chair.
  • Gov’t Relations:
    • Need a chair rather than lots of co-chairs. YangYang, who has relevant background and participated in the last two DC trips is willing to take on this task.
    • Already: need to go after our lightning round winners to get them to go on this trip
    • Jessica has this info, and that must be followed up with.
    • New version of the materials that we take with us. Cooke (DOE) has coordinated an effort to update the brochure and similar documents. Need to make sure there is input from us.
    • We need to look at the 2 pager that shows what the P5 report says and our progress on that
    • The two pager should be consistent with the P5 report which indicates LHC as the highest near-term priority, while providing balance with neutrino program and US based experiments
    • The Ask
      • A short statement summarizing the funding request we are making
      • This will be formulated in the next two or three weeks
      • We must watch this closely
  • Outreach: No current chair.
  • Web Presence: Gordon: current chair, Darien and David and Toyoko
    • We are losing Dorian, for our technical support
  • Financial and fund raising: We need a chair to help with this
    • Fund raising: hardest bit is going and asking for money – and this is what limits our activities
  • Communications: Darin Acosta
  • Annual Meeting: Newman is chair
    • We are going to need more people to help as many of the current ones have left the committee
  • Rules & Elections: Jahred is chair.

US Particle Physics Effort

  • Jahred usually represents us, and Viviana was able to take over this time (her report):
  • New layout of the us particle physics web site
  • New STEM brochure – do we have specific ideas for covers and other things – they want to know by Jan 15.
  • How do you connect particle physics to other hot topics (like quantum information, etc.)?
  • There is a second one that is more focused on connections with everyday life.
  • These will likely be part of the material that will be taken on the DC trip

DC Trip planning

  • Each year Fermi UEC, SLAC Users, sometimes DPF, and us pool together to visit congress
  • We target about 20 participants from USLUA
  • Visit as many congressional offices as possible – we get close to 350 in total.
  • Main focus is on congressional office visits but also includes visits to the Executive Offices – OSTP (Office of Science and Technology Policy), DOE Office of Science. A visit with the Secretary of Energy was requested but not granted so far.
  • Breese Quinn – has become a real resource what with connections with staffers on almost all the important committees. He usually has about 40 meetings (!!).
  • We will travel on March 6/Tuesday. Briefing (at URA) early Wednesday – get latest updates, assemble folders with materials that we have, and distribute them. Weds and Thurs to visit offices (and a few on Friday).
  • Thursday and Friday – report to NSF and DOE how the week went. DOE is on Friday this year.  A pain to get out there, also, allow about 30 minutes for security.
  • Each person (about 20) should report things from their POV

USA Science and Engineering Festival

  • Huge event, every two years. 350K visitors last time. We had a booth. Julia Thom was on the committee – it was a heroic effort to get everything down there and setup.
  • It’s too late to mount such an effort for this year’s festival but we might be able to coordinate with the John Hopkins display, just received positive response from Andrei Gritsan
  • Verena has already started reaching out to Fermi to understand how to connect to people
  • Spencer Pasero is the new Manager of Fermilab’s Office of Education and Public Outreach, replacing Marge Bardeen
  • Verena has tried to contact Spencer but no response so far, so given the time constraints perhaps most of the work might be done with John Hopkins
  • Paperwork requirements for use of hazardous substances and issues of insurance might drive us towards screens… VR tools like the ATLASrift were a huge success in the past, and remote connections to experiments, etc., can be setup easily. Julia Gonski can make some of the connections

Web Site Content

  • David Miller has been rather active, and we’ve asked him to be a continuing observer
  • Desired improvements:
    • Need to update how to contact congress
    • Issue pages (taxes, medical insurance, etc.)
    • Topical things that have come up: credit cards (good/bad/fees?)
    • The value depends on having updated and valuable information
  • From Usha:
    • Security rules are changing (stricter, of course)
    • Might be better to supply links to other sites with the up to date information.
    • Sara Charlie has been helpful (US/LHC Communications person)

Feedback from Annual Meeting (Fermilab)

  • Attendance was not great considering the location at Fermilab
  • Corinne did a survey – see email that has been circulated
    • The most valuable aspect is the opportunity to network and interact across experiment boundaries and career stages, with funding agencies, and with those from our field now in industry (career stages, experiments, funding agencies, etc.)
    • We should offer more opportunities for that, less for full talks.
    • Career panel got very positive feedback from both senior and junior people
    • Corinne will come up with a revised agenda to take a stab at this, and circulate it for discussion.
  • We should settle on a location as quick as possible. The survey showed a strong support for having the meeting at Fermilab, citing easy of travel and lower cost. However, we also need to provide balance e.g.  was really easy. Should we use it again?
  • Significant issues with remote connections, for the LR presentations. Need better videoconferencing support and testing connections ahead of the sessions

Next time:

  • Go over finances and fund raising

USLUEC meeting minutes from 12 September

Minutes of meeting of US LHC Users Organization Executive Committee of September 12, 2007

=========================================

Attendees: Mike Albrow, Michael Barnett, Bob Clare, Sridhara Dasu, Joey Huston, Peter Jacobs, Greg Landsberg, Peter Limon, Tony Liss, and Jimmy Proudfoot.

In absentia: Dan Green and Harvey Newman.

Meeting was scheduled for 1:30pm EDT on September 12, 2007. After unsuccessful attempts to connect via VRVS, it has been decided to switch to a conference phone call and the meeting has finally started at 1:45pm.

The following topics have been discussed:

LUO EC Funding:
——————-

Since LUO EC doesn’t have any official source of funding (unlike Fermilab and SLAC counterparts), it has been discussed how to raise funding through the funding agencies. It has been agreed that the main issue is funding for Washington DC trip, which can not be supported from federal grants. It has been decided to approach DPF to attempt raise such funds.

Users Meeting:
—————–

It has been agreed that an important task for the LUO EC is to organize and sponsor annual LHC Users Meeting, similar in scope to the Fermilab Users Meeting. This meeting will provide a forum for the US community involved in the LHC to discuss their results, communicate with the funding agencies, and promote young scientists. From Greg Landsberg’s experience in organizing the Fermilab Users Meeting, the cost for such an enterprise is $15K. It has been decided that the funding agencies (DOE, NSF) should be approached directly to raise funds for the annual meeting. It is expected that a hosting lab/university will provide some cost sharing.

Outreach:
———–

LHC has been getting a lot of mostly favorable press lately, so the outreach program of the LUO EC should build on this success and help exposing US scientists’ involvement in the LHC.

Governance:
————–

The main topic on the meeting agenda was an election of the LUO EC chair for the next year. According to the LUO governance rules, the chair and the secretary are to be elected by the EC members. In the absence of the chair and secretary, Greg Landsberg has agreed to be a temporary secretary for the first meeting. The following qualifications for the chair have been mentioned as important: previous experience with similar users organizations, direct access to funding agencies. After polling meeting attendees and, later, two members who were not able to attend the meeting in person, the following three candidates have agreed to stand for the election:

Michael Barnett

Greg Landsberg

Tony Liss

It has been agreed that the candidates will provide brief statements to the committee about their qualifications and vision of the LUO EC role. After this the committee will vote to elect the new chair. Votes will be collected by Jen Nahn in confidentiality and the results of the election announced to the committee. In case of a tie, a second round will take place among the two top candidates. It is expected that the new chair will be elected and announced to LUO during the week of September 16. It has been decided that the newly appointed chair proposes candidate(s) for the secretary position, and the committee elects one.

NOTE: As a result, Michael Barnett has been elected as the chair of LUO EC on September 19.

Other Matters:
—————-

There was a brief discussion on other matters, such as annual Washington trip, possible Quality of Life subcommittee, etc. It has been decided that more detailed discussion will take place after the election of the chair.

Next meeting:
—————

It has been decided that the next LUO meeting will take place in approximately two weeks, following the election of the chair. It has been later scheduled for Friday, September 28.

The meeting adjourned at 2:27pm.

USLUEC meeting minutes from 28 Sept 2007

Minutes of meeting of US LHC Users Organization Executive Committee of September 28, 2007

=====================================

Attended by:

Michael Barnett, Mike Albrow, Peter Jacobs, Peter Limon, Greg Landsberg, Jimmy Proudfoot, Joey Huston, Harvey Newman, Bob Clare, Sridhara Dasu, Dan Green (Tony Liss absent).

Sridhara Dasu was elected Secretary by acclamation.

A committee of Newman (chair), Clare and (third person??) will decide on the technical means of the committee’s future meetings, evaluating means such as EVO versus phone calls with slides on Indico.  Indico may be used independent of this choice.  Ability to use phone to connect is required.

The initial email newsletter will be sent to the US membership of the four LHC experiments plus the accelerator community (from a list to be made by Limon). Future newsletters and most communication between the Executive Committee and Users be limited to those who have registered as members of the USLUO. Emails may on occasion also be sent to the full US LHC User community, as warranted. Newsletters will also be posted on the USLUO website.

This first newsletter will describe who we are, what we do, and ask for suggestions for what we should do.  We will urge people to register on the website.  Among topics for the newsletter (possible areas of action for USLUO) are CERN facilities, contacts with Washington policy makers, the first annual meeting, simplifying life for CERN visitors, as well as long-term stays, an outreach committee, etc.

Landsberg and ??? volunteered to start writing a first draft of the newsletter and send the draft to Barnett and Dasu.

Proudfoot, Albrow? and ?? volunteered to look into the timing of the first annual meeting of USLUO to occur at Fermilab.  DOE and NSF will be solicited to contribute something like $2000 for the expenses of the meeting.

Dates discussed ranged from April-August 2008.

Two meetings will be held in the first half of October to get some immediate feedback from LHC physicists and engineers.  The first will be held at CERN probably on October 9 or 10 at lunch time.  This is ATLAS week but all Americans at CERN will be invited.  Non-Americans are welcome to attend if they wish.  Jeff Spalding will be contacted by Barnett to seek participation by CMS people.

Liss and Barnett will seek a day/time that minimizes conflicts in the ATLAS week activities.

The second meeting will be at Fermilab during the LPC workshop (LHC Physics Center) October 11-13.  Again all LHC people will be invited to attend.  Green will look for a convenient day/time for this meeting. [Now announced to the US-CMS community – Oct 11, 5pm, Wilson Hall, 1-West, 16:40-18:00, Co-chaired by Dasu and Proudfoot.]

The USLUO website should be kept up-to-date.  There should be a link to the new US-LHC website.  There should be links to the CERN users group and others users groups in the US.  Barnett will make contact with the CERN users group to have ongoing communication.  A committee of Peter Jacobs (?) agreed to look into the updates of the website. (Note: Peter Jacobs, Tony Liss and Sridhara Dasu have in practice become the committee by discussing and contributing to the website.)

News of the new USLUO should be placed in Fermilab Today, Interactions, Symmetry, and other labs newsletters as well as the LHC experiments’ newsletters.

USLUEC will meet approximately once a month.  Barnett will seek to find a day that is best for everyone.  If there is no day/time without an ongoing conflict, the day of the week will be alternated.

Photos of the USLUEC members will be collected and put together on the USLUO website.  Landsberg? volunteered to take charge of this.

USLUEC meeting minutes from 16 November 2007.

Meeting 16 November 2007

Attendees: Albrow, Barnett, Clare, Dasu, Huston, Green, Landsberg, Limon, Liss, Newman, Proudfoot, Jacobs

Joey Huston was confirmed as our chair of DC and local visits to policymakers.

The continuing resolutions and the lack of a budget provide an immediate concern for LHC users like all others in our field.  The solutions that may occur range from a long-term continuing resolution to a 3% across-the-board cut, to cuts to specific budget items.  Some solutions are much more to our liking, and would be impacted by visits to policymakers while they are at home during the holidays.  NUFO is organizing this currently (NUFO= National Users Facilities Organization).

Email exchange using gmail accounts for lobbying issues.  We can collect the gmail account names of all the USLUO staff and make a gmail group. There was talk about setting up gmail server with all USLUO membership.

Fermilab USLUO meeting summary.  20-30 participants (mostly senior people, some postdocs and few students).  People liked the idea of LHC users meeting.  Fermilab/Argnonne hosting the first meeting was well received.  We discussed funding for the meeting.  Asking NSF/DOE and possibly the projects was agreed as a reasonable way to proceed.  How would young people stationed at CERN be involved in this meeting.

Perhaps this could be attached to an LHC meeting at Fermilab (what date?).  Time is of essence.  (See action items) There was a discussion of lab vs university representation.  The consensus was that the issue is not lab vs university within LHC program.  We need to advocate for LHC vs other HEP program interests of the labs.  We need some advocacy at HEPAP etc.  We need to work with lab LUOs regarding visits to Washington.  There was lot of discussion about how to get funds for Washington trip — no easy answer yet.  Large amount of time was spent on support of US visitors (long and short term) to CERN.  This was also a major topic of discussion at CERN USLUO meeting.

There are currently staff in both ATLAS and CMS to assist people coming to CERN.  However, the existing help is often not sufficient.

There was discussion of using existing staff or adding new staff to help and/or provide advice to people coming to CERN for long-term stays with visas, housing, medical care, drivers licenses, buying a car, shipping, etc.  There was discussion about trying to combine ATLAS and CMS services into an LHC wide support staff. There was discussion about whether the help people need to be located at CERN or not. Some thought that the helper staff need not be in CERN, for instance to get better overlap of time with those planning long term moves to CERN, whereas others thought that the helper person needs to be at CERN.

There is a desire to collate information about the variety of forms/amounts of compensation for long-term visitors to CERN.  This would be put on the USLUO website to give people insight to the options.  There will not be any recommendations.  Way too difficult to decide a common procedure.  Argonne decided with HR to do it case-by-case.  There was also discussion about compensation for cost-of-living due to the falling dollar.

There was discussion of making the best use of the USLUO website including by linking to important resources (we don’t wish to duplicate).  Link to user experiences (blogs), existing stuff from CMS, ATLAS and beyond.  Links to English community in Geneva.

Funding for DC visit program (especially to cover travel costs of younger folks): Could inquire with URA, DPF, local universities, etc.

The trip is expected to be sometime around 2nd week of March.  There will be a January meeting (perhaps first week) to organize these DC visits (and to create a one-pager).

The next USLUEC meeting will be organized soon for early December.

ACTION ITEMS:

Joey Huston to make contact with SLAC and Fermilab Users Organizations as well as NUFO.

Tony Liss will collate information and experiences about coming to CERN to be posted on (or linked from) the USLUO website.  Some information has come from Fred Olness and Joe Incandela.

Dan Green will collect information from ATLAS and CMS about the forms of and amounts of compensation for long-term visitors to CERN.  The webmaster will post this information.

A plea was made to visit congressmen locally during the Holiday season breaks. This is to mitigate potential losses in the conference committees.  Argue for support for physical sciences in general, specially mentioning support for physical sciences locally at the universities.

Addendum (P. Jacobs):

Please add to the minutes the item I raised again yesterday, namely fixing the date for the User’s Meeting soon. My recollection is that someone (Greg?) agreed on the phone conference to circulate candidate dates but I haven’t seen that. My email yesterday (sent after a brief discussion with Michael Barnett at lunch in the LBNL cafeteria) was an attempt to re-start that discussion.

USLUEC meeting minutes 17 January 2008

Participants: Barnett, Clare, Dasu, Jacobs, Albrow, Liss, Huston, Proudfoot

(There might be some participants missing  – it was difficult to follow on the telephone – we should probably have a roll call part way through the meeting, as there is too much confusion at the start.)

The discussion was primarily about the funding situation.  We discussed the Omnibus disaster and the community reaction.  In particular we talked about the supplement and potential for that succeeding.  APS will be lobbying for the supplement.  It was mentioned that letter from Intel chairman Craig Barrett should be used in support of support for physical sciences.  We also discussed Orbach’s interview with Science magazine.

We also discussed the Washington visit and its importance.  As for funding of people going to Washington, we decided to try with our own institutions first.  Barnett will ask APS/DPF if they would be willing to support some of our USLUO-EC visiting Washington.

Clare, Jacobs and I reported about the Washington visit preparation meeting at SLAC on January 9th.  We relayed the concerns expressed by the lab directors, and the negligible hope they see in getting a supplement passed.  SLAC sees that this budget correction may be more permanent than a one shot.  Therefore, the lab is preparing for reducing HEP staff level to prepare for future.  FNAL on the other hand is going for furlough scheme, hoping for mid-course correction either with a supplement or with early passage of next year’s budgets at higher America Competes Act / American Competitiveness Initiative levels.  The agreement between SLAC-SLUO, FNAL-UEC and USLUO at the SLAC meeting is to make the primary request be, early passage of the DOE Office of Science and NSF appropriations bills at the level envisioned in the America Competes Act (i.e., doubling of the physical sciences budget in 7 to 10 years).  April Burke (FRA lobbyist) and Stanford lobbyist both thought that this years Omnibus process was difficult to understand.  They did not think that we will be able to find out whether the reduction in funding for HEP this year was a consequence of general reduction or was somehow targeted by some one in Congress.  There is no point in dwelling on that — we need to move on to future budgets.  The SLAC meeting went over the one-pager, particle physics in pictures booklet and also logistics of the visit.

Those who are able to go to Washington should quickly find out about their funding needs, and make arrangements for travel. Joey Huston will be coordinating the visit with UEC/SLUO people.

USLUEC meeting minutes from 12 May 2008.

Minutes of the USLUO Executive Committee
Meeting on 12 May 2008

Present: Albrow, Barnett, Clare, Dasu,
Green, Landsberg, Liss, Newman

I. Annual meeting

We decided on the LHC Users Meeting day, Friday Oct 24, 2008.

Dan will check with Fermilab about availability
of room and make arrangements.

Speakers:

  1. Foster. Kovar. Probably not Orbach as he
    is not going to be there for long. 
    We should invite all.  Probably
    not ask them all to talk.  Perhaps, a panel discussion.  Saul Gonzalez should also be included.  Similarly NSF people.
  2. Someone to help with lobbying.  Steve Pearson, Mike Lubell –  APS lobbying people.
  3. CERN
    users organization representative.
  4. Status on each of the experiment —
    expectations from LHC data.  Theory talk?
  5. Graduate student / postdoc on their work
    on LHC and their life at CERN.  (Identify people who can serve on Washington trips next
    year).
  6. SLHC should be a topic.

Agenda committee: Mike B, Greg L, Sridhara
D

Local committee: Dan Green with other
locals.  Will work with local members of the committee. Some talks in the morning FNAL time can be
live-fed to CERN.

II. 
Contents of First Message to Members etc.

  1. Announce meeting
  2. Point to Website
  3. Introduction and our Role
  4. Please Join USLUO
  5. DC trip plans

III. 
Website update

Peter Jacobs worked with Jen Nahn to put
together the information.

See Peter’s email for details.

We should make CERN
Guide more prominent.  Perhaps, call it “Guide to Living @ CERN”. 
Michael B is debugging this as a user of that website.

IV. Mailing to LHC users

USLUO Meeting announcement & Welcome
people to register for USLUO

membership (at www.usluo.org) and the
meeting itself

Email to
USCMS/USATLAS/USAlice/USLHCB/USLHCAccel

Dasu: How do we get hold of theorists
interested in USLHC program?

Perhaps, we can send the message through
DPF.

Michael B: Please check.

V. Washington visit

Communication about Washington visit should be better.  Many emails were missed. There should be a single
person sending information to all. We will try to do a better job next
time.

Graduate student and postdoc participation
in Washington
visit is important. 
We need to identify people and find funds for them.

Funding for Washington trip:  Collect voluntary contributions from the membership. 
Legal issues in setting up a non-profit which can lobby the congress may be too complicated.  Michael will check if APS will be willing to collect contributions on our
behalf.  APS/DPF already gave us ~$5000 this year, mostly supporting
senior people.

VI. Elections to the Executive Committee
for next year

Nominating committee: Bob, Tony.

Since there is no requirement in the
constitution that people cannot run again, we can allow for those with
1-year expiring terms to run for exec committee again.  The election should be conducted in the Summer and new members will join as of the
Oct 24 meeting.