Monthly Archives: October 2019

UW System President Ray Cross to Retire

University of Wisconsin System President Ray Cross announced Friday he would retire after his successor is named by the UW System Board of Regents. Cross has served as president since 2014. He came to Wisconsin in 2011 when he was named chancellor University of Wisconsin Colleges and University of Wisconsin–Extension.

Additional media coverage here:

WISN’s UpFront on Campus Speech Legislation

State Representatives Dave Murphy (R-Greenville) and Greta Neubauer (D-Racine) recently appeared on WISN’s UpFront to discuss UW System campus speech rules and proposed legislation.

Murphy, chair of the Assembly Committee on Colleges and Universities, told WISN’s Adrienne Pedersen that “conservative students are telling me that they feel that their ideas and their thoughts are being oppressed. They feel like they are really a minority on campus, and they feel like they need some protections like other minorities might have.”

Neubauer pointed out that “chancellors right now have the ability to determine appropriate action if they feel someone’s free speech has been violated. We do not need to mandate that, and we do not need the Legislature pushing that idea. We should allow chancellors to maintain their discretion.”

October Board of Regents Meeting

The University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents will meet at UW-Superior Thursday and Friday, October 10 and 11. Livestream coverage of the full board portions of the meeting is available here.

Regents meet in committee Thursday morning after a tour of the Lake Superior Research Institute ballast water treatment system testing facility.

  • The Business and Finance Committee will hear a report from UW-Superior, discuss several reports relating to investments and financials, and consider eight contractual agreements at UW-Madison.
  • The Education Committee will consider three new degree programs, including a bachelor of arts and bachelor of science in data science at UW-Madison. The committee will also discuss changes to four Regent Policy Documents, including one relating to laboratory animals.
  • The Audit Committee will discuss the internal audit, compliance, and risk management.
  • The Capital Planning and Budget Committee will hear a report from UW-Superior and consider granting authority to several campuses for construction projects, including the Camp Randall renovation and Field House repair project.

The full board will meet Thursday afternoon and Friday morning. UW System President Ray Cross and UW-Superior Chancellor Renée Wachter will address the board Thursday afternoon before moving into closed session to discuss honorary degrees, two salary adjustments at UW-Madison, chancellor evaluations, and legal issues.

On Friday, the board will hear updates from Cross and UW System Board of Regents President Drew Petersen. The regents will also vote to approve an amendment to student disciplinary rules. The amendment would outline punishment for students who disrupt free speech on campus. Regents adopted a policy in 2017 but it does not take effect until UW System administrative rules are amended.

Administrative rules must be approved by Governor Evers before they are sent to the legislature. A spokeswoman for Evers recently said the governor voted against this policy when he was a member of the Board of Regents and he continues to oppose the policy.

Last month, two bills (Assembly Bill 444 and Senate Bill 403) relating to campus speech were introduced. This legislation directs the Board of Regents to create a campus speech policy that would supersede and nullify any prior Board of Regents or institution policies or rules restricting free expression. PROFS is registered against these bills. If either bill passes the legislature, it must still be signed into law by the governor before becoming law.

October Legislative Update

This legislative update was distributed at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Faculty Senate meeting yesterday. The senate meets the first Monday of every month at 3:30 pm in Room 272 Bascom Hall during the academic year, October through May, except in January.