Student Senate opposes Madison breakaway

Student Senate opposes Madison breakaway

Story by Eric Larson

Student Senate voted Monday to submit a resolution to Governor Scott Walker regarding their unanimous disapproval of UW- Madison’s proposed split from the UW structure. The four-page document, entitled “In Opposition to the Breakaway of UW-Madison from the rest of the UW System,” was passed by a 27-0 vote.

“Time is definitely of the essence,” said Mark Morgan, director of the Academic Affairs Commission. “I have not heard a single good argument as to why Madison should break away; definitively, we need to act as quickly as possible.”

Aside from Walker, the resolution will also be passed on to all UW and interim Chancellors, the UW Board of Regents, the United Council, and all state representatives.

Senators at the meeting seemed mutual in their opposition of the break, voicing that, aside from the need to act quickly, the proposed action would have severe ramifications for both Madison and the remaining UW students.

“This would really do damage to the prestige (of Eau Claire),” said Ben Ponkratz, Director of the Environmental Endeavors Commission, during the discussion Monday. “There’s no reason anybody outside of Madison would approve of this.”

Morgan said the split would open up “Pandora’s box” to the state of Wisconsin, creating a “bureaucratic nightmare” for the UW System as a whole.

“This system merged together 40 years ago, and splitting it apart right now would really just doom one side as inferior, and the other … well, as Madison,” he said. “As far as ramifications for Madison goes, a break would require the system to rewrite all of their statutes, policies, etc… (Madison) would lose a lot in student authority. It’s bad for both.”

Morgan added Eau Claire is the only school in the UW System so far to submit a resolution to the governor’s proposal.