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Petition for the U
From eNews, November 13, 2003
The University of Minnesota's Legislative Network launched an online petition campaign (you can sign the petition online) last week to ask Governor Tim Pawlenty to invest in the University. The campaign will help to demonstrate how important the University is to the state, says Mike Dean, Legislative Network coordinator. The University educates students, trains Minnesota's health care professionals, attracts businesses and employers to the state, develops cures and conducts research that improves our quality of life. The University of Minnesota is critical to the state's long-term success, and without adequate funding every family in the state will be affected. The campaign will help to demonstrate how important the University is to the state. "The goal of the campaign is to build a grassroots movement in support of the University," says Dean. "We need to show state leaders that there is a great deal of support among citizens for investing in the University this year." Last year, the state cut the University's base budget by $185 million for the current biennium. This reduction was the largest in U history and resulted in double-digit tuition increases, about 500 layoffs, and a one-year salary freeze for employees. The Legislative Network is a group of volunteers who share a commitment to higher education and the University of Minnesota. Over the years, it has kept alumni, students, faculty, staff, and community members informed of important University initiatives at the legislature. To learn more about the campaign or the Legislative Network, see http://www.supporttheu.umn.edu.