Student Regents doubt split

By Claudia Curry

Two student Regents agree that the proposal to separate NIU from the Board of Regents is not likely to pass as a bill in the state legislature.

NIU Student Regent Nick Valadez said he can see merits in the proposal made by Sen. Patrick Welch, D-Peru, to establish a separate governing board for NIU, but he is doubtful that a bill would pass.

Valadez said, “This is a continuing issue. It has been brought up to the state legislature before, and the bill has gone nowhere.”

Some of Welch’s concerns and reasons on which he has based his proposal need to be addressed, Valadez said. “Some of the reasons are legitimate, but I do not think the prospects of this bill passing are that good.”

Valadez said the proposal for a new governing board for NIU has had a lot of support on the NIU campus for a long period of time.

Brian Hopkins, Sangamon State University student Regent, said, “I don’t think the bill would pass. The only real way to cure the problem with the present board is not to add another layer of bureaucratic waste. We should be looking at ways to streamline the system instead of adding to it.”

Jon Dalton, NIU vice president for student affairs, said he did not care to comment on the proposal. “I follow the concerns expressed, but being a university administrator, I really don’t want to take a position on that issue at this time.”

Ken Beasley, assistant to NIU President John LaTourette, said there have been similar bills submitted periodically to the state legislature in the past, and like the past ones, “I will follow this bill with interest. However, I really don’t want to have an opinion on supporting the bill or not.”