Three weeks ago, S&W contributor Joe Salmons shared his conviction, apparently based on his conversations with key lawmakers, that Public Authority was already dead.
Despite that spreading belief, which was also shared by Paul Fanlund of the Capital Times and others, lobbying for the NBP continued unabated, with one observer likening the Public Authority to Monty Python’s dead parrot.
Subsequently, the “compromise” proposal was floated that UW-Madison remain within the System but get its own Board of Trustees, an idea that was sharply criticized by almost everyone who knew anything about it, including former UW-Madison adminstrator Harry Peterson.
A report this afternoon by the Cap Times’ Todd Finkelmeyer seems to make the deaths of both the Public Authority and the two-boards proposal official:
With that news, the closing comments from Joe Salmon’s May 5 post seem worth reposting:
Whether you are profoundly disturbed or greatly relieved by this, we need to acknowledge that this is where things stand. And we need to think about what we’ll do when it’s officially dead and buried. I’d suggest things like these:
- Heal the divisions on campus. We have allowed ourselves to be terribly divided and cannot afford it at this critical moment. Let’s rally around our shared commitment to top-quality, affordable, accessible public higher education and move forward.
- Work to make amends with System, not just to get back the extra $30 million cut that Madison would take with public authority, but just to live within System after what’s happened.
- Work for changes that are most valuable to us and consistent with top-quality, affordable and accessible public higher education. Some of the ‘flexibilities’ that drove the New Badger Partnership are possible with or without changes to state law.