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Limit needed on former pols on U board?

Posted by: Jenna Ross Updated: February 23, 2011 - 10:45 AM

Three former legislators are now members of the University of Minnesota's 12-person governing board, a fact that has some people worried.

A "set limit on the number of former elected officials who can contend for regents' seats in a given year is in order," the Star Tribune's editorial board argues.

Such a move would "ensure that politicians do not come to dominate the governance of this important state institution," it says. Not that the new regents, elected Monday, aren't qualified, the board says. They are.

It continues:

"The new regents can function both as internal watchdogs and ambassadors on the university's behalf to their fellow Republicans.

But selecting regents on the basis of their partisan pedigree isn't good for the university in the long run, especially if one party's loyalists are allowed to dominate the board.

The former legislators will be well positioned to help bridge a credibility gap that has opened between GOP lawmakers and the state's educational flagship. GOP legislators are quick to accuse university administrators of overspending and inattention to faculty productivity."

What do you say? Are you happy to see these watchdogs on the board? Concerned about party loyalists exerting their influence?

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