Details of an autonomous University of Wisconsin at Madison have emerged following a controversial bid for the flagship university to split from the UW system.
The New Badger Partnership website, which has tracked the university's efforts to increase institutional flexibility -- especially regarding setting tuition -- posted a summary (PDF) of the proposed bill which would rebrand UW-Madison as a public authority, much like the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics.
According to the summary, the institution would be governed by a 21 member Board of Trustees, 11 of whom would be appointed by Gov. Scott Walker and 10 who would be elected by UW-Madison affiliates. The university chancellor would maintain a non-voting seat.
In addition, all of the institutions assets and liabilities would be transferred to the newly established authority from the UW Board of Regents. The institution would remain public and continue to receive state funding, but as a "block grant"-- which would allow the university to allocate public money as it sees fit.
The proposed bill has been denounced by many university officials who fear that the split will play out poorly. In a letter to Walker and UW-Madison Chancellor Biddy Martin, UW System President Kevin Reilly and other officials wrote that "dismantling our public university structure is a consequential public policy decision that affects every UW campus, all 72 UW-Extension county offices, and every family who dreams of seeing their child earn a UW degree."
What do you think of an independent UW-Madison? Leave your opinion in the comments section.