Both houses of the Wisconsin Legislature approved the 2015-17 biennial budget (Senate Bill 21) this week, sending the bill to Governor Scott Walker for his approval. The governor has not indicated if he will use his extensive veto powers to eliminate or change any sections of the proposal, but quick action is expected as Walker has said he would like the budget completed before he formally announces his run for the presidency.
The budget cuts $250 million from the University of Wisconsin System, removes tenure protections and shared governance language from state statutes, outlines new procedures to fire tenured professors, and freezes in-state tuition for two years. Walker originally asked for a $300 million budget cut and full public authority for UW System.
PROFS lobbied vigorously against the tenure and shared governance proposals and massive budget cuts, communicating with members of the Joint Finance Committee and sharing formal statements on the budget and tenure with the entire legislature.
Yesterday, Chancellor Rebecca Blank sent two letters to Governor Walker requesting vetoes relating to tenure and shared governance and indefinite academic staff appointments:
Tenure and Shared Governance
Indefinite Academic Staff Appointments