BGSU trustees oppose TEL amendment

A resolution opposing the proposed Tax Expenditure Limitation (TEL) amendment to the state constitution was passed at the May 5 meeting of the board of trustees.

The ballot proposal would limit state and local government spending by using a formula equaling the aggregate amount of inflation plus population growth, or 3.5 percent annually-whichever is greater-unless voters approve a higher amount.

The resolution stated that the board "believes the educational needs and aspirations of Ohio families for their children and the aspirations of other Ohioans to advance their skills and knowledge should not be left to the chance of a formula that makes all such needs and aspirations irrelevant."

Further, the resolution stated that the TEL formula "neglects the needs of the state to foster and assist higher education, to increase the number of graduates with baccalaureate and advanced degrees, to respond to the requirements of industry for a highly trained work force, to promote research and development, and to provide Ohio families with in-state education facilities that can compete successfully with those of any other state."

The board's resolution also charged officers of the University with disseminating educational information about the ballot issue, its possible effects on higher education, and the reasons for the board's opposition to the amendment.

The trustees are a group of 11 Ohio citizens appointed by the governor who are authorized by law to "do all things necessary for the proper maintenance and successful and continuous operation" of BGSU.

Earlier this year, the Inter-University Council of Ohio, which represents public institutions of higher education in the state, and the Cleveland State University Board of Trustees passed similar resolutions expressing grave concern over the TEL amendment's potential impact on Ohio. Trustees of other state universities are considering resolutions of opposition as well.
May 8, 2006