Bill to add political appointees to Rutgers board approved by Senate committee

By Kelly Heyboer/ The Star-Ledger

TRENTON — A controversial bill to add more political appointees to Rutgers University’s board of governors advanced in the state Senate today over the strong objections of university officials and the threat of a lawsuit.

The Senate Higher Education Committee voted 3-2 to approve the legislation proposed by state Senate President Stephen Sweeney. The bill calls for expanding the Rutgers board of governors from 15 to 19 members by adding four new political appointees.

Sweeney, who sat in on the hearing, said the larger board would help the 65,000-student state university run better. The four new seats would all be filled by board members with medical backgrounds because Rutgers added several medical schools when it took over most of the former University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey last year.

Sweeney (D-Gloucester) cited several recent sports-related scandals at Rutgers as evidence the school needs a better governance system.


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