The Joint Special Legislative Committee on University Governance convened a hearing and work session during the Oregon Legislature’s fall interim legislative days. During the September 13 hearing, committee members heard public comment on a draft legislative concept and recommendations that would provide institutional boards for the University of Oregon and Portland State University. Committee members heard from key stakeholder groups, including students, alumni, and staff. Rudy Crew, Oregon’s Chief Education Officer, also offered the comments on the draft legislation and the role that institutional boards would play in overall education reform efforts in Oregon.
The hearing took place during a public comment period on the draft legislation that closed on September 15. President Michael Gottfredson offered written comments on the draft legislation and the committee work. In his letter to the committee, Gottfredson praised the work of the committee and its efforts to ensure that “Oregonians will have affordable access to quality higher education close to home.” Other written comments are located on the special committee’s website.
The special committee presented its draft legislation and recommendations to the Oregon House Higher Education Committee and the Oregon Senate Education and Workforce Development Committee during a joint hearing of both panels on September 15. Members of both committees offered questions and feedback to special committee members, who have until November 1 to submit final recommendations to the legislature.
Several days following the interim legislative meetings, special legislative committee co-chair State Senator Mark Hass (D-Beaverton) issued a press release stating that the special committee is on track to recommend institutional boards legislation for consideration by the full Legislature in 2013. According to Hass, the committee will vote on recommending the draft legislation at its October 4 meeting. More information about the committee and its work can be found on its website.