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U faces most challenging legislative session seen 40 years

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Outgoing University president, Robert Bruininks, states the challenges facing the University of Minnesota in the upcoming budget deliberations at our state capitol.

For the full State of the University address:

From President Bruininks:
My presidency began with substantial state budget cuts, and as my term comes to a close, we face the most challenging legislative session I've seen in my four decades in Minnesota. On Tuesday, May 3, I testified before the legislature's higher education budget conference committee, perhaps for the last time as president of this great University. I thanked the legislature for the many things we've accomplished with state support over the past several years, reminded the committee members that we've already been cut deeply twice in the past decade, and again urged them to consider something less than the severe budget reductions and additional regulations currently under consideration for the University of Minnesota.

Legislative outlook
Ordinarily at this point in the budget process -- with both a House and Senate bill on the table and a conference committee working -- we can see the likely outcomes and work toward our preferred end. This time, however, neither bill is acceptable:

  • Both cut the University too deeply (especially given previous reductions).
  • Both restrict our ability to set our own priorities to address these deep cuts. 
  • And both contain language that will damage our ability to attract and retain researchers and external funding. 

The proposed deep reductions roll state funding back to 1998 levels -- when the price of oil was at an all-time low and our freshmen were entering kindergarten -- and will erode our ability to deliver on our unique mission of world-class educational opportunities and innovation through research and discovery.  Read more .....

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